Mike Mulford is originally from Rockford, Ill. He made his way down to Carbondale in 1986 to study Industrial Technology at Southern Illinois University (SIU), and he's been here ever since! Mulford has a total of four degrees from SIU. Three are Master's in Manufacturing Systems, Instructional Design, and Multimedia.
Mulford considers himself a professional volunteer. In addition to the Southern Illinois Radio Information Service (SIRIS), Mulford also volunteers with the Williamson County MA, WDBX 91.1FM, the Jackson County Reserve Medical Corps, the Tourism Bureau of Du Quoin, and the Carbondale Police Department.
Mulford sees volunteering as a positive way to stay active and to expand his skills. "You learn a lot. [When you volunteer] you really get a lot more than you think. A lot of people don't want to do it because they're not getting paid, but you'd be surprised at what you can learn."
Mulford has been a reader at SIRIS since 2009. He found out about reading opportunities when he volunteered to help with the SIRIS Classic Vinyl and Media Sale. "I sorted for the record sale for the last five years and somebody said, 'Oh, you've got a good voice, you might be pretty good at [reading]. Why don't you come in and we'll have you read the newspaper?' "
Mulford says the most rewarding part of volunteering with SIRIS is working with people and knowing he can make a difference. "I have tinnitus…so I know what's it's like to have a slight disability, and I know [SIRIS can help make a difference] with people."
Outside of volunteer work, Mulford likes to keep up with the latest technology. "I try to enhance my education through reading, working with computers, multimedia, and the web." Mulford is also a walker. He walks ten miles, three times a week. "I'll leave at six in the morning and come back around nine."
Mulford jokes that his bucket list is to finish everything on the bucket list. One thing he's already checked off from the list is his warbird experience. He was able to disc jockey at a warbird event and also got a chance to ride on a Boeing B-29.
Mulford's favorite newspaper to read is the Carbondale Times. He enjoys watching Nature on WSIU-TV, and occasionally listens to classical music on WSIU Radio.