Volunteer Spotlight: Colleen Miles

A life-long resident of the Bridgeville-side of South Fayette Township, Colleen Miles spent her childhood at Bridgeville Public Library. Her love for libraries eventually led to a library career, where Ms. Miles has worked for the last twenty years and serves as Head of Youth Services, at the Upper St. Clair Township Library.

Having volunteered to serve on the Library’s Board of Trustees for eight years, Ms. Miles recently transitioned to an advisory board position for the Friends of the Library.

We sat down with her recently to learn more about her volunteer experiences.

Can you share a little background information about yourself?

I enjoy swimming, reading, and gardening. I have never met a hobby or craft that I didn’t want to try!

How did you first get involved with the library board and Friends?

I got involved after a chance meeting with a resident who was formerly on the board. She encouraged me to sit in on meetings, and after a few months, I applied to be on the board. I served for about eight years before transitioning to an advisory board position for the Friends of the Library.

Why are you supporting the library?

My childhood was spent at BPL, and I wanted to support the library so that others may grow up with a similar fondness for the place and hopefully become lifelong library users and readers. My hope is that maybe one day they’ll be inspired to help out their community’s library.

What is your favorite thing about the library?

Apart from BPL’s beautiful and bright interior, I love the library because anyone working there can answer any question that you have and help you with anything that you need.

Any favorite events or memories?

When I was a high school student, I volunteered nearly every Sunday during the school year when the library was in the Caboose. My favorite memories from that period are working with Elaine Downing and I think it is why I am a librarian today. Something that sticks with me is that in the Caboose, the library’s collection of the Boxcar Children books was housed in a caboose. I always thought that was so cool.

Any accomplishments that you’re most proud of?

Working hard with the other board members to develop a strategic plan to keep the library going during some lean years.

Where do you hope to see the library in ten years?

At 505 McMillen, but with solar panels on the roof, public art displayed on the property, and lots of patrons enjoying robust programs.

What is your favorite book?

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

Any final words?

If you love BPL, consider donating your time to either the board or the Friends. Many hands make light work, and together we can make BPL shine!