BRANDON, VERMONT | For the past 13 years, Tina Wiles of Brandon, Vermont has been supporting, encouraging, and inspiring both girl and adult Girl Scout members in the Greater Rutland community. Her outstanding commitment to the Girl Scout Mission and her willingness to help virtually whenever and wherever needed has earned her recognition as Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains’ November Volunteer of the Month.
Wiles began her Girl Scout journey as a Brownie in Hinesburg, Vermont. She says Girl Scouting always provided her with a sense of community and belonging. “I never felt like I was in the popular crowd. Girl Scouts provided a safe place and a group that I could belong to,” she said. “I’m still friends with a lot of the girls who were in my troop. Some of the girls are also serving as Girl Scout leaders in other states, which is pretty neat.”
In 2004, Wiles began volunteering with Girl Scouts when her younger daughter, Christina, wanted to become a Daisy. “They needed a troop leader, so I stepped up. I was really excited to share the kind of Girl Scout experiences I had enjoyed.”
Over the years, Wiles has continued to step up and help whenever there was a need in her Girl Scout community. She has held many volunteer leadership roles, including serving as Volunteer Support Coordinator from 2009 to 2014. “They just needed someone to do it, so I did it,” she said. “No hesitation.”
Wiles has also served as the Community Accounting Coordinator, and for the last seven years, is a Community Product Sales Coordinator, a role vital to coordinating all aspects of GSGWM’s Fall Product and Girl Scout Cookie sales.
In addition to time spent helping GSGWM’s Girl Scout community, Wile’s troop is still going strong after its start thirteen years ago. Wiles says she’s taught the girls in her troop about the value of serving others in their community. “Helping others has always been important to me, and I’ve led my girls in this direction,” she said. “They’re always volunteering in some capacity. They see the value of doing something not for recognition, but simply because they see the need to do it.”
Some of her troop’s most notable service projects include participating in the council’s annual partnership with the U.S. Forest Service on Cape Cod during February school vacations; supporting transitional homes for the homeless; and organizing and hosting their community’s camporee.
“We’ve done a lot of things. I just let them take the lead,” Wiles explained. In addition to service projects, the troop has traveled to New York City and Boston, and attended last year’s Senior Leadership Conference in Rhode Island, now called the Global Leadership Conference. “It was very important to the girls to be involved and participate in the discussions.”
While addressing issues they care about, many of the girls in Wile’s troop have, with her guidance and support, earned the highest honors in Girl Scouting. “I’ve had many of these girls since they were five years old and to see where they are today makes me proud of the time I’ve given to them,” she said.
Wiles, who also received the Girl Scout Honor Pin in May, is very humble about her Volunteer of the Month recognition. “Of course, this is a wonderful honor, but I am a Girl Scout volunteer because I enjoy doing it. It’s all about the girls, not me. I don’t do these things to get recognition, I do it because giving to others is an important part of who I am.”
When she’s not volunteering with Girl Scouts, Wiles enjoys traveling, hiking, spending time with her family, cake decorating, and making the most of every day. A self-described “dare devil,” she also loves parasailing and zip-lining.