On October 17, one of our dedicated volunteers, Melanie Flynn, stood in front of over three hundred people to accept the Friends of Balboa Park Inspiration Award. She was one of five volunteers from all of the cultural institutions in Balboa Park to receive this honor, which recognizes volunteers who go above and beyond expectations to make a positive difference in the community, for Balboa Park visitors, and at institutions in the Park.

“She is a wonderful representative of the Museum because she genuinely cares about each and every visitor. I have never seen Melanie without a smile on her face,” wrote our Public Engagement Manager Cathy Lee in her nomination form. Education and Programs Associate Sydney Garcia added, “She is a major asset to our Museum family and treats all visitors and fellow volunteers with the utmost respect.” Lead Visitor Relations Associate Ariel Baumbaugh wrote, “Her attitude is contagious to others, making the Museum environment an even better place to work!”

As part of her acceptance, Melanie was asked to write a short piece about why she volunteers. An excerpt reads, “The view from the top [of the California Tower] is topped only by the diverse, educational exhibits in the Museum, the interesting guests that climb the Tower, and, of course, the professional, kind, and caring staff that makes up the Museum family. I certainly receive so much more than I give from volunteering.”

Congratulations Melanie and thank you for all that you do!


If you’re interested in volunteering at the Museum there are many ways to get involved. From Tower Trekking, to becoming a Museum Ambassador or Craft Corner Volunteer, there’s an opportunity waiting for you! To learn more please contact Volunteer Programs & Education Associate Sharleen Eusebio at seusebio@museumofman.org.

Photo credit: BreezyG Photography