Charen became a volunteer in December of 2017, and has since been eager to lend a hand in many different aspects of the Museum. She always wears a welcoming smile and is always excited to assist wherever needed. If you happen to see Charen during your next visit to The Bryan, please be sure to thank her for her hard work and invaluable dedication to the Museum and the Volunteer Program.
We asked Charen a few questions about her time at the Museum:
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a native born Floridian but spent my formative years in Germany as a “military brat”. We were transferred to Texas in 1961 and I now consider myself a “Texan”. I retired in 2002 from Conoco after 25 years and started volunteering at Brazos Bend State Park in 2007 doing maintenance and interpretive work for 8 years as a Park Host. I also have several other local volunteer jobs in my home town of Alvin. Including church work, Meals on Wheels where I serve on the Board, and a low cost dental clinic.
What enticed you to become a volunteer at The Bryan Museum?
I like being around and talking to people and like interpretive work. I became fascinated with the museum on my first visit and saw an opportunity to learn more about Texas history while talking to people and eventually being able to impart what I learned to others, especially those not from our fabulous state.
What is your favorite part of being a Bryan Museum volunteer?
The visitors. I learn many things from them. The Galleries are just amazing to me. I see and learn something every time I go through them. History fascinates me and there is plenty of that here. I thought I was relatively well versed in Texas history but boy was I wrong!! So guess I would have to say the learning experience about my state and local area AND the visitors.
What is your favorite thing about the Museum?
As I said above, the visitors are one my favorite parts and I would have said the Statehood and Beyond Gallery was my favorite gallery when I first came here because the “cowboy way” has been a large part of my adult life, from working cattle on the Salt Grass to pulling gates in a rodeo arena; but the more I learn about the Texas Frontier Gallery the more fascinating it becomes to me. It amazes me that Mr Bryan could have amassed so many great documents as well as the rest of his collection. I’m learning things in there I NEVER knew before.