Nevada Historical Society honors volunteers Lowndes, Coleman

RENO, Nevada – Nevada authors and dedicated volunteers David Lowndes and Carol Coleman were recognized with the Marjorie Fordham Award at the Nevada Historical Society Docent Council’s awards luncheon on Wednesday, April 4.

David Lowndes, left, and Carol Coleman, center, pose with Nevada Historical Society Docents Council President Betsy Morse after receiving the Marjorie Foirdham Award during the council's annual awards luncheon on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at Baldini's in Sparks. Guy Clifton/Travel Nevada
David Lowndes, left, and Carol Coleman, center, pose with Nevada Historical Society Docents Council President Betsy Morse after receiving the Marjorie Foirdham Award during the council’s annual awards luncheon on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at Baldini’s in Sparks. Guy Clifton/Travel Nevada
Lowndes has volunteered with the photography department, manuscripts and the library in addition to pitching in wherever needed. In the past three years, he dedicated nearly 4,000 hours of volunteer time to NHS. He also authored the book, “Images of America: Reno’s Heyday, 1931-1991,” the proceeds from which go back to NHS. Coleman is also a longtime volunteer with more than 3,500 hours of volunteer time to her credit and is a past president of the Docent Council. She authored the book, “Images of America: Early Reno,” the proceeds of which go to NHS. The Marjorie Fordham Award is the Docent Council’s highest honor. Fordham was an active volunteer from 1984 to 1988 who became known for her knowledge of Nevada history, her dedication and enthusiasm for the programs and operation at NHS. She died in 1998. Two docents – Art Di Salvo and Linda Burke – were recognized for 20 of service with the Docent Council. A number of docents were also recognized for their volunteer hours, being awarded accessories to their ID badges, called danglers, to recognize their milestones. They included:

  • 250 hours: Laura Chenet-Leonard, Gloria Hanson, Irene Ko, Gayle Calhoun, Annette Cate and Monique Kimball.
  • 500 hours: Bob Harmon, Russell Umbraco, Kitty Umbraco and Lorraine Petersen.
  • 750 hours: Joyce Cox and Annie Bickley.
  • 1500 hours: Elda Elias
  • 3,000 hours: John Gomes
  • 3,500 hours: Carol Coleman and Frank Wheeler
  • 5,500 hours: David Lowndes
  • 6,500 hours: Arline Laferry

The Docent Council is an educational organization that supports the mission and activities of the Nevada Historical Society. Members do everything from working in the NHS store to conducting tours of the museum galleries to aiding researchers in the library to helping NHS staff on numerous projects. They also host a monthly historical lecture. In 2016, docents volunteered 8,931 hours to the Nevada Historical Society. “We simply couldn’t operate without them,” said NHS Director Catherine Magee. “They have so much knowledge, so much enthusiasm about Nevada history, it’s inspiring to be around them.” If you are interested in learning more about becoming a volunteer with the Docent Council, there are training classes in the spring and fall of each year. The spring event is May 19 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and the fall event is Sept. 12 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. For more information, contact the Nevada Historical Society at 775-688-1190.