Samantha Bolen is well-known to many Victorians and book-lovers as the owner and president of Bolen Books. She is the second-generation in this family business and is currently seeing the book store through a large renovation/rejuvenation along with Hillside Centre.
When not at work she enjoys spending time with her husband and family, including two grown children.
Black Press: If you weren’t in your current career, what would you be doing?
Samantha Bolen: If I wasn’t working I would volunteer with charities I believe in and that I can see are making a difference both locally and worldwide. If I was to choose another job then I like to think I would have gone into law. I believe one can leave a legacy in a meaningful way within the legal system.
BP: What have you learned as you mature that you would like to have been able to share with a “younger you?”
SB: Think before you speak. Take time to digest all the information before you act, and that being a good listener is far more important than getting the last word in.
BP: What do people look to you for guidance about?
SB: I live a pretty balanced life for the most part. Many people today can’t say that about their lives and feel that being busy equals success. So I do try to find ways to guide people to a work life balance in all their relationships.
BP: The one thing you’d like to do better?
SB: Speak another language. I have such a hard time when we travel and the minute I am home any little phrase I had picked up leaves me immediately.
BP: What does relaxation look like to you?
SB: At home it’s bed and books, books, books, books. My husband finds them stashed around the bed frame all the time. But relaxation for holidays means something else to me. My husband and I are both from the Prairies and the flatness of the land and the big sky and open spaces are so relaxing to me I can just feel the stress leave me when we get there.
BP: Most unforgettable experience?
SB: I went to the Galapagos Islands and spent time with species I will never see again. I swam with seals and penguins and the most amazing fish I had ever seen. I saw giant tortoises roaming in fields. I saw blue-footed boobies and hammerhead sharks. I climbed a volcano and walked through dark underground caves with a miner’s helmet on. It was the most amazing trip ever.