Thursday, January 27, 2011

Volunteer Spotlight: Bob Payne

How long have you been volunteering with the WM?
Two years

What are your primary duties?
Courthouse Docent/Tour guide

How many hours per week do you usually volunteer? 
5 to 10 per week, sometimes more, lots more.

What type of training did you have? 
I attend all training offered by the Museum. I also have formal training as a briefing officer and public speaker.

How do you feel your work helps others?  
My orientation is towards history, I enjoy learning about history and teaching others about it. Especially the interesting and amusing elements of history which are not very well known. When people hear me talk about history, they usually smile a lot and that means they retain some of what they heard.

What do you enjoy most about WM?  
You can learn a lot about the History of Williamson County at the Museum. I also like working with the people who work and volunteer there.
What's unique about WM? 
I know of no other museum that reaches out to school children as much as The Williamson Museum. Also, it is small but is located in a great building in the center of town.

Personal information about yourself:
Native Texan, born in Big Spring, and raised on the Gulf Coast. Joined the navy in 1955 and served 25 years on active duty. Stationed all over the world at some very interesting places, I was directly involved in the Cuban Missile crisis at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in 1963/64 and served with the US Marines in a combat role in Vietnam. Was responsible for building Top Secret Intelligence facilities in Florida, Hawaii, VietNam, and Guam. Was also a briefing officer in Washington, DC.

In retirement, I volunteer at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Temple, am active in the Veterans of Foreign Wars, (VFW), Habitat for Humanity, the Red Cross, and am Editor of the Naval Cryptologic Veterans Association (NCVA) newsmagazine CRYPTOLOG. I also sit on the Board of Directors of the NCVA. My hobby is golf, which I play as much as possible.

Married to Edith Payne, we have a son, Walter, who is in Real Estate in Austin and a daughter, Maria, who lives in Belton with my grandson, Robert.

Have you ever thought of volunteering at the Museum? It’s not just about giving tours. To sign up for February training, contact Celina Aguirre at or 512-943-1670.

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