On April 6, 2016, Melissa Clifford and Eileen Telegdy were honored as the Volunteers of the Year at the annual meeting of the Oberlin Heritage Center’s (OHC) board meeting for their work on the oral history project at the local museum. According to the Oberlin Heritage Center:
“The work of the Oberlin Oral History project has spanned more than 35 years and involved the dedication of many volunteers. Two Oberlin Heritage Center volunteers in particular, Melissa Clifford and Eileen Telegdy, devoted hundreds of hours in recent years to bring OHC’s oral history collection into the modern age by digitizing the bulk of the cassette tapes on which the interviews were first recorded. Their attention to detail, patience, and perseverance allows the collection to be more accessible to the public and assures that this history is well-preserved for future generations. The Oberlin Heritage Center recognizes the team effort that volunteers make to long-term projects such as this one and salutes the dedication of Melissa Clifford and Eileen Telegdy for their extraordinary efforts in literally preserving the voices of the past.”
This is a huge honor and my husband can attest that when I learned I was named for this award in the mail, I was literally dancing around the house. I can’t really put into words what this organization means to me. When I met with Liz (OHC Executive Director) three years ago as a Graduate student looking for experience with a museum, I never intended to not be able to leave when I was finished with my degree! She brought me into this project and it is fascinating. I encourage everyone to stop by and to listen to one of the interviews. I really have to thank Liz for letting me help and my husband for his immense patience when I say I am going to the museum for an hour and don’t come back home for six. I really appreciate this honor and can’t even express what it means to me. Thank you.
– Melissa Clifford
I, like Melissa, came down thinking I would just be there for a little bit and found myself there for hours just fascinated by the stories. At one point, I remember telling Liz that I was afraid if I didn’t come back soon enough, somebody else would finish digitizing the tape I was working on and I didn’t want that because I definitely wanted to hear the end of those stories. These oral history stories are just a treasure that you all have access to and it’s been a pleasure for me to work on all of them. It was truly my pleasure.
– Eileen Telegdy
We, at Clifford Business Services, LLC (CBS) are pleased that our CEO, Melissa Clifford, was able to assist in such an important venture. We are proud Business Members of the Oberlin Heritage Center and encourage everyone to check out OHC’s website, museum and all of the fine work performed by all of the volunteers, staff and board.
For more information about the Oberlin Heritage Center, visit: http://www.oberlinheritagecenter.org/
For more information about Oral History Project, visit: http://www.oberlinheritagecenter.org/researchlearn/oral_histories