header wave graphic

North Plains Volunteer Spotlight: Cathy Phelps

cathy_phelpsAs a retired primary school teacher, Cathy Phelps not only knows first-hand the powerful impact libraries and books have on people, but she also knows the importance of reliable and committed volunteers. These things, plus wanting to get better acquainted with the community compelled her to begin volunteering with the North Plains Library 15 years ago while she was still teaching full-time for Portland Public Schools.

She has been an amazing regular volunteer since then doing a variety of much-appreciated work including unpacking books delivered by the Washington County Cooperative Library System (WCCLS) courier systems, preparing new books and getting them ready to go on the shelves, putting summer reading packets together, and a variety of special projects as needed. While she does like to travel now and again, she commits around 4 hours per week to volunteering at the library most of the year.

She remembers being inspired watching the new library building being constructed in 2006, shortly after she and her husband built a home and relocated nearby. “I went into the library and asked how I could get involved,” says Cathy, “and I’ve continued because the library is such a valuable asset to the community, the library staff are tremendous, and it’s an honor to be a part of this strong resource for the community.”

Library staff in turn have positive things to say about Cathy: 

"Through thick and thin, Cathy puts her energetic cheer to work in our library every week. She has an eye for detail and gives valuable, practical suggestions. We always enjoy hearing the latest about her alpacas!" ~ Library Director Robin Doughty

“We are so thankful to have a volunteer like Cathy who is so professional, enthusiastic and efficient in helping with a wide range of programs, projects and volunteer duties. For example, she worked with her husband, Wayne, to put together a Library Jeopardy Game for Teens complete with buzzers (yes, made from scratch!) and an amazing PowerPoint Jeopardy game of literature, local facts and North Plains history. Cathy is a true library treasure!”
~ Library Volunteer Coordinator Carol Aldrich

While the pandemic paused library operations and volunteer hours, Cathy is happy to see things opening up and appreciates that the library staff are doing everything they can to keep everyone as safe as possible. She looks forward to a positive future for the library, including continued community outreach programs and working towards a larger facility with more space to serve even more people.

You’re the best, Cathy, and we appreciate all that you do!