Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library

MLK Library Docent Volunteer


Do you have a passion for literature, history and architecture? DC Public Library invites you to join a team of MLK Library Docent Volunteers who will assist members of the public in learning, understanding and enjoying the recently modernized Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library, its artwork, history and extensive services and collections.


  • At least 18 years and older
  • Must be enthusiastic, cheerful and willing to learn. Have an interest in working with diverse staff and visitors
  • Successful experience with leading tours and or speaking to groups
  • Excellent interpersonal and oral communication skills
  • Interest in literature, decorative arts and architecture a plus
  • Experience or education in teaching, history or art can be helpful, although not required
  • Willing to complete a free background check


  • Welcome and introduce visitors to DC Public Library
  • Provide standard guided tours for adults, groups and students
  • Introduce and assist with self-guided tours
  • Assist with receiving visitors
  • Represent DC Public Library in a professional and courteous manner to staff and the visiting public


  • Docents are expected to be available for one 4-hour shift each week, and a minimum commitment of one year; We are able to work around vacations and school schedules
  • Typical shift: 4 hours per shift (morning - 9am - 1pm; afternoon -  1pm - 5 pm; and evening - 5 pm - 9 pm)
  • Daily tour schedule - TBD
  • Docents are encouraged to volunteer as often as they are able
  • Attend training sessions and meetings as scheduled


  • Initial 3-4 hours of training (combination of a virtual session and in-person training - which will include shadowing a tour guide and successfully completing an observed practice tour
  • Learn the materials through training and reading, be able to present tour information clearly, and answer questions in a politically neutral manner
  • Attend scheduled meetings for in-service training and updates to the program
  • All docents will receive a copy of our Docent Handbook as well as summaries for each program and material about DC Public Library history

Benefits of being a Docent Volunteer

  • Opportunity to learn about District of Columbia history, art and architecture
  • Opportunity to meet interesting people
  • Opportunity to share passion and enthusiasm for the library
  • Chance to share and practice public speaking skills
  • Ongoing enrichment programs featuring local and national authors and annual social events.


  • Tuesday, June 22, 6:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, June 26, 1 p.m.

To register for a virtual info session, please email or call Stacey Lucas at 202-741-5990.