As the director of General Programs for the Reston Community Center, Eileen Boone supervises the directors for youth, teen, adult and senior programs. When not busy at the RCC, she enjoys spending time at the Lake Anne Coffee shop in Washington Square Plaza. Also an avid reader and fan of fine dining, Eileen Boone is this week's People Profile.
Number of years in the community? I have worked for the Reston Community Center for five wonderful years. I began in February, 2001. Time certainly does fly when you are having fun!
Family: I have been married to my husband, Tony, for 4 1/2 years. He is an attorney and works in Prince William County, although we live in Centreville. We often wish we lived in Reston but Centreville is a good mid-point for us and is a convenient commute.
Education: I graduated from Longwood University in 1997 with a bachelor's of science degree in Therapeutic Recreation. Longwood was one of the first colleges in the country to offer an accredited Therapeutic Recreation program.
Current job/primary occupation? Currently I am the director of General Programs at RCC. What this essentially means is that I supervise the program directors responsible for our Youth, Teen, Adult and Senior Adult Programs. It is a challenging and rewarding position and allows me to be creative while also strengthening my leadership skills. This is a fairly new position for me — I was promoted last March after spending four, fun-filled years as the Senior Adult Program Director.
Achievements: I have presented three educational sessions at regional and state-wide professional recreation conferences in the past two years. Five years ago I would have never imagined doing such a thing. My tenure at RCC has allowed me to gain extensive professional experience, versatility, and confidence. In addition, I have maintained my national certification as a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) and am the current treasurer of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society's Therapeutic Recreation Resource Group.
Activities/interests/hobbies? I am an avid reader and recently joined a book club to vary and expand my selections. I enjoy the outdoors and particularly like to bike, play tennis (if my husband will ever agree to play with me!), go walking, and relax on a sandy beach.
Favorite local restaurant or place in the community? Jasmine Cafe located in Lake Anne Plaza is my absolute favorite restaurant in Reston. The ambiance, the food, the people — you can't ask for anything more.
What are your community concerns? I'm always concerned that we may be not reaching everyone in the community that could benefit from our programs. We have so much to offer at RCC — our programs are designed to improve and enhance the quality of life for each participant. I think our staff does an outstanding job of planning holistic program schedules to enrich the body, mind, and spirit. I would like to see more information translated into alternate languages and more outreach to encourage increased participation and patron feedback.
What brought you here? Although I am a native of Northern Virginia (born and raised in Springfield, Virginia) I moved to Richmond after college graduation. Shortly after I became engaged, I relocated here and interviewed at RCC the very next day. I didn't even know how to get to Reston — my mother had to drive me. I had worked in recreation for four years at that time and was amazed when I drove into Reston and walked into RCC. Reston is truly singular-diverse, entertaining, and full of terrific people. I can say the same about RCC! Needless to say, I was extremely happy when I was offered the position I had applied for.
What community "hidden treasure" do you think more people should know about? OK, I am definitely biased but I have to say the Reston Community Center. Second choice would be the Lake Anne Coffee Shop.
When you were younger, what did you want to be when you "grew up?" I always wanted to work with and help people and I can honestly say that I am doing that. I feel very fulfilled with my profession and proud of the various jobs I have held. These include working as an activity director in long term care; as a recreation therapist in a physical rehabilitation hospital; and, finally, working in a community setting with RCC.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Hopefully Tony and I will be proud parents by that time and that I'll still be working at RCC. It is hard for me to imagine not seeing all the dear people that comprise RCC, and Greater Reston, on a regular basis.
Personal goals? One of my goals includes higher education — I'd like to get my master's degree in Recreation Management or Public Administration. I also plan to take the examination to become a Certified Professional Recreation Professional (CPRP), which is highly regarded in the field. My very personal goals include becoming a parent, owning a single-family home, and traveling to Ireland!