WeHaKee Featured Alumna: Elizabeth Miller
At WeHaKee Camp for Girls, we are so proud of the fact that our campers and staff come from all over the world to create a community together in Winter, WI. We are even prouder and always impressed by what those WeHaKee women do in their own communities, and how their time at camp brings a little bit of WeHaKee wisdom out into the rest of the world!
A couple of times a month, we would like to feature a WeHaKee Alumna so you can share in the pride and joy of your camp community!
Our Featured WeHaKee Woman is Elizabeth Knowles Miller.
You may recognize Elizabeth from her work in co-creating and promoting the WeHaKee Legacy Project! Our new picnic tables and benches are due in part to her enthusiasm for the project as well as some new skills taught by fellow WeHaKee women! She brought the WeHaKee experience to her husband and sons through Family Camp, and is always ready to connect with any friend of WeHaKee. A true champion of the WeHaKee life, she’s a great person to ask about camp!
In Elizabeth’s own words, more about camp and how it impacts her life today…
I was a camper 1974-79; counselor 1983-85, family camp 2017-2019; advisory board member 2014-2021- my dad was a camp doctor for three summers when I was a camper and at one point my entire family (mom, two brothers and three sisters) spent time together at camp!
I’m originally from the Twin Cities and currently live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with my husband, Mark, and sons Luke (18) and Joshua (12), and our golden doodle, Minnie! After 11 years teaching first and second graders, I decided to stay home when my oldest was born. Being a full-time mom- aka, CFO (chief family organizer) of the Miller clan- has been both incredibly rewarding and challenging. It has allowed me a lot of flexibility to stay connected to teaching as a parent volunteer at my boys’ schools, our church and most recently, as an advisory board member for camp. I’m currently working at our local Jewish Community Center as a lifeguard. I also swim and compete with the U.S. Masters Swimming organization. Swimming is one of my passions and WeHaKee definitely played a role in nurturing it! When I’m not swimming or volunteering, I can be seen “ubering” my youngest around town to his various activities.
Camp WeHaKee introduced me to campers and counselors from all over the world. Its diversity had a profound impact on every part of my life. It’s where my desire to travel and to become a fluent Spanish speaker began. I majored in Spanish at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, MN and studied in Spain for a year during that time. Before returning to school to earn a masters degree in education at the University of Minnesota, I traveled quite a bit.
In between studies, I volunteered in an indigenous village in San Lucas, Toliman in Guatemala and during that year was able to travel to Mexico to attend Tete’s wedding, a friend I had met at camp. Later, I worked as a trip director and traveled to many countries including Taiwan, Bahamas, Bermuda, France and Germany. I also led high school groups on tours in Mexico. Twenty-five years ago, my husband and I honeymooned in Costa Rica. Once COVID becomes more manageable, I hope to continue traveling with my family. The world is a beautiful place and I love exploring it as much as possible!
Some of my favorite memories of WeHaKee include time spent with my cousin and her friends from Chicago. I also loved singing around the camp fire, learning how to speak Spanish from Mexican friends, participating in camp Olympics, praying in the chapel, council fires, cabin nights and of course, singing before and after meals in the dining hall with SMK! Did I mention trading post, swimming across the lake, learning to play guitar, and being a counselor with my high school and college friends? So many incredible memories.
Recent memories of camp include time with my family at family camp and reconnecting with alumnae over the past year through our Legacy Project.
My favorite activities were any of the water activities, although I did take gymnastics, archery and learned how to ride a horse, too!
Camp WeHaKee will open your world to more possibilities than you can imagine; you will grow more confident, learn new skills, make friends that will last a lifetime and learn that you can pretty much accomplish anything you set your mind to!
We are lucky to have Elizabeth as a part of our community! Connect with Elizabeth and alumnae like her in our WeHaKee Alumnae Facebook group.