Meet the Staff!
Published on Thursday, May 31, 2012 - 9:28am
Since her arrival at the Cleveland Park Neighborhood Library in 2001, Jackie Mikolaski's creativity, rich life experiences, and exceptional generosity have benefited customers and staff. Her heartfelt enthusiasm, love for working with children and background as an elementary and middle school teacher are evident in class visits and during her story time presentations -- on Thursdays in French! Thanks to her artistic talents, we all enjoy the beautiful, original window displays she designs every month.
Jackie has led an exciting and fascinating life, growing up in England and studying in France, earning degrees in education, fashion and architecture, and political science. As a child she loved drawing, and pursued it after finding her calling. For 17 years, she immersed herself in the world of fashion, first working for an haute couture boutique and later as a successful freelancer, creating her own designs for fashion houses all over Europe.
While taking a sabbatical from fashion and looking for new inspiration in Africa, she taught in a French-Lebanese elementary/middle school in Ivory Coast and, by serendipity, there met her husband, then a Marine Captain. They moved to Washington, D.C. and then on to the Middle East, California, and Michigan before finally moving back to our nation's capital with a young family. Wanting to give back to the community here, she began volunteering at the Cleveland Park Library in 2001. In her youth it never occurred to Jackie that she might someday work in a library, though she volunteered in libraries during high school and college. After a year, the branch manager convinced her to join the paid staff and she was hired.
Jackie enjoys a broad range of interests and activities. She has enjoyed figure skating, played polo, fenced and has even competed as an equestrienne! She has decorated her home with gorgeous tile work, works in stained glass, loves to dance, and frequently entertains guests. She's an excellent cook and conversationalist. Jackie has a close-knit family, and is proud of her outgoing son who is studying aeronautics, and her thoughtful daughter who will be entering college this fall.