Check out Beverly’s interview below!
Beverly Miles was born in Oakland. Her father was in the military and the family travelled around for much of Beverly’s youth. Through her experiences of Oakland—even when her family wasn’t living there—Beverly developed a great appreciation for the city’s rich social, cultural, and nutritional landscape. Beverly also attends church in Oakland.
Beverly describes herself as an adventurist, a writer, and a storyteller. While absolutely identifying as an African American, she sees herself as a woman of the world. When she retired from her work in higher education as an administrator, she began traveling the globe and even lived in Costa Rica for 13 years. Her experience in Costa Rica helped shape her sense of trust in people and community. She observed how people on this planet basically want the same thing: a good life. In her interview, she draws a comparison between gentrification in Oakland and the land grabs in Costa Rico, when she says that the “Gringos” were gentrifying the jungle.
When Beverly returned to the East Bay in 2000, she was shocked to see all the new bike lanes and restaurants with outdoor curb seating…and no black folks partaking. It made her wonder if the bay was a place she would be comfortable living. But ultimately, her experiences in life and abroad led her to see that Oakland is the perfect place to live. She began to see with fresh eyes that the people here are of all kind of flavors. For Beverly, you don’t have to go abroad for a taste of the world—just take a walk through Oakland.