Marguerite Voorhies has worked at Volunteer State Community College since the day it started, July 1, 1971 as Cataloging Librarian.
Vol State, called the historic Cordell Hull Hotel home in 1971.
Voorhies could recall when the current campus opened in Feb. 1972. The Library staff was responsible for moving the collection of books belonging to the School into the Ramer Administration Building using the “Book Truck.”
Of course, as Voorhies said, “Then, we had less books.” The Vol State Library again moved when Thigpen Library opened in 1994.
“Everybody in the beginning that I was so close to, because we were over there in the administration building, retired. I just refuse to retire, as long as I have my health and half a brain!” said Voorhies.
When she was just out of college, Voorhies started at the Blue Grass Regional Library in Columbia, TN. They had a book mobile, and “we would take the book mobile to post offices, really anywhere that would take us, banks, or whatever, and leave books for people,” said Voorhies. She spent two years working at Columbia State Community College before coming to Vol State.
Voorhies’ favorite thing about working at Vol State is “working with the students, and the Vol State family.”
“[The biggest change] is the growth of the student body and college personnel. We only had a few students then,” said Voorhies.
Donna Warden, who has worked in purchasing and acquisitions at the Vol State Library for 40 years, said her favorite memory of Voorhies was filming a skit for a Media Information Resources course.
The MIR course was a required course for all incoming freshman. In this particular video, Voorhies was dressed like a biker chick, and kept saying “Honda” instead of “Harley.”
“We kept telling her, no, Harley people don’t like Honda!”
“She is such a sweet and caring lady…she has a good heart,” said Warden.
Julie Brown, who is the Technical Services Librarian at Vol State, has been Voorhies’ supervisor since Jan. 2010.
“[Voorhies] continues to be a dedicated professional. I can only hope to be as active and sharp as her when I’m her age. She comes in to work every day…she really enjoys what she does,” said Brown.
Voorhies lives in Gallatin during the week, and commutes to and from Columbia on the weekends. She has a sister and three grand-nephews there that she “loves dearly.”
“What has stayed the same [in 44 years at Vol State] is the idea that the student comes first,” said Voorhies.