People who enter the Robert Russa Moton Museum are often greeted by a familiar face.
Quadarra Walker, who has volunteered with the museum for eight years, provides assistance to patrons in the guest services department both during the museum’s daily operation and during special events. Her gentle, friendly demeanor is difficult to forget.
Walker, was recently awarded Volunteer of the Year by Moton.
“I’m very excited, and I didn’t know this was coming,” Walker said about the award.
The award came as a surprise to Walker, but to the museum’s leadership, the award was long due.
Sherre Atkins, guest services coordinator & administrative and office specialist with the Moton Museum, said Walker “is an integral member of our Volunteer Staff. She’s reliable, dependable and a joy to be around. Her commitment to Moton expands beyond working in the Guest Services Department, as she’s faithfully served as a hostess at our Annual Community Banquet for over four years now.”
Walker first heard about the museum’s volunteer opportunities from a friend she had met at her church, Apostolic Faith Church of All Nations. She said volunteering allows her to do something she enjoys.
“I like to work with people,” Walker said.
Walker said during a typical day as a volunteer she will clean, take inventory of the guests by signing them in and out, and operate the register for the bookstore.
She said the opportunity to interact with museum visitors is what she looks forward to each shift.
“My favorite aspect is helping the guests in and out of the museum, and getting to know them and communicate with them,” Walker said.
Cameron Patterson, executive director of the Moton Museum, said the museum’s volunteers have a vital role in the museum’s operations.
“I’ve always been struck by the service and dedication they provide,” Patterson said. “They have a deep care and passion for helping us to advance our mission. At the heart of our volunteer team has been Quadarra Walker.”
Patterson said Walker has been especially necessary during the past year.
“We have navigated some tough waters during the last year with the Covid pandemic, but Quadarra continued to show up and helped us successfully navigate through it all,” Patterson said. “We have come out better because of the dedication of volunteers like Quadarra. She is so deserving of this recognition.”
Walker, a Prince Edward County native, enjoys music and sings outside of her volunteer duties with her church’s praise band. She also practices karate.
Atkins said seeing Walker’s development in her role has been particularly rewarding.
“I’ve had a front row seat to observe her growth and development as a Guest Services Professional and can’t wait to see what the future holds for her,” Atkins said. “She is well deserving of this award and what qualifies her is not only her service and dedication but the fact that she probably won’t even expect to receive an award of recognition for what she does.”
To learn more about volunteer opportunities with Moton, visit motonmuseum.org.