Volunteer Spotlight: Meet Jim Milne
It’s hard to believe that Jim only began volunteering with us in early February of this year – he has spent so much time with us this year that it feels like he’s always been part of the family.
Jim started out harvesting parts and recycling bikes at our Sunday drop-in sessions. Within a few months, he joined us on Tuesdays, quickly becoming certified as a Holiday Bike Drive Mechanic. As if that weren’t enough, Jim signed on as one of our very first Guest Mechanics, and he now comes in two days a week to help us with wheels and Create a Commuter bikes. Oh, and he joined our detailing crew out at Cycle Oregon.
On top of all this, Jim is just an exceptionally kind guy, and we all love spending time with him. Read on to learn more about his contributions!
How long have you been volunteering at the Community Cycling Center? How did you start?
I have been volunteering since February of 2011. I started volunteering because I had three main goals in my life: get a new career, get healthy, move out of the sticks and into Portland. I got laid off from my family’s business and went to UBI to learn bicycle mechanics. I started coming to drop-in Sundays to get familiar with the tools of the trade.
What sort of volunteer work do you do?
I take part in both the drop-in volunteer shifts (Sundays and Tuesdays). I also participate in the Guest Mechanic program, Wednesdays I help build bikes for the Create a Commuter program and on Thursdays I true wheels for the shop to sell.
Why do you volunteer here?
I love bicycles, I love working on them, and I love the programs that CCC offers for people to get bicycles. It’s a win-win for me. Also I am looking for a job as a bike mechanic and this is on the job training, especially the Guest Mechanic program.
What is your favorite Community Cycling Center program (Bike Club, Create a Commuter, Holiday Bike Drive, etc.)? Why?
That’s a hard decision to make, there are so many great programs to choose from. I would have to say that the Holiday Bike Drive edges out the others for me, though. Getting to watch those kids pick out a bike is awesome! Helping to give kids that kind of joy is a lot of fun!
What is your dream bike?
Another tough question. I don’t think I have just one dream bike but I did promise to get myself a Renovo once I had lost enough weight. I am nearly there, I have lost 125 pounds so far, but I don’t think I can afford one at this point!
What do you do when you’re not here (i.e., any hobbies or passions)?
I love to cook, and used to be a chef. I also play table top roleplaying games like Dungeons and Dragons, Villains & Vigilantes (think D&D but comic book superheroes instead). I love photography, though I don’t think I am very good at it. I refurbish bikes for myself and my wife in our garage. And my wife and I foster dogs for Multnomah County Animal Services.
If someone made a bio-pic of your life, what would it be called? Who would play you?
Escape from Suburbia: How I survived a redneck upbringing! I love my family, I truly do, but there are times when I think I may have been adopted. As for who would play me, my wife would love it if Johnathan Frakes would play me, she always thought I looked like Commander Riker from Star Trek.