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Wygenia Miles, educator, active in Episcopal Diocese

Aug. 5, 1946 – March 31, 2017

Wygenia Miles, of Buffalo, a teacher and educational administrator who was active for many years in St. Philip’s Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Western New York, died last Friday in Buffalo General Medical Center after a short illness. She was 70.

Born in Newberry, S.C., the former Wygenia Hailstock came to Buffalo with her family in 1953 and attended East High School.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in business management with a minor in economics from the University at Buffalo, a master’s degree in international business from Daemen College and a master’s degree in education from Empire State College.

Since 1994, Mrs. Miles worked at McKinley High School, where she was an administrator, a business and computer science teacher, senior class adviser and chairwoman of professional development.

Previously, she was an administrative assistant at the St. Augustine’s Center and was deputy director of the Bob Lanier Center.

She also served as director of the UB Institute for CBO (chief business officer) Education and Training.

Mrs. Miles served in numerous offices and committees at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church and in the Episcopal Diocese, since the 1980s.

Known to all as “Genia,” she was church treasurer for 30 years and chaired the rector search committee.

She served three terms in the vestry and two terms as a warden. She chaired the communications team and headed the 150th anniversary celebration in 2010-2011. She also was event chairwoman for the church’s Boys and Girls Choir.

She was president of the board of directors of St. Philip’s Community Center and was a member of the church’s endowment committee and its planning team and facilities committee.

From 1980 to 2012, she was a delegate eight times to the annual convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Western New York.

Since 2013, she had been serving her second term as a member of the Diocese Council. Since 2011, she had been serving her third term on the Episcopal Community Services Board.

She was the bishop’s representative to Episcopal Community Services from 2007 to 2010. She had been co-convener of the Diocese Communication Revitalization Committee since 2008.

She was active in Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and several other service organizations. She was a former president of the Niagara Falls Chapter of The Links Inc.

A member of Leadership Buffalo’s Class of 1992, she was secretary and chairwoman of committees for the Harriet Tubman 300.

She also was a member of the Junior Achievement Western New York School Advisory Board.

Survivors include her husband of 51 years, William A. Sr., retired assistant deputy director of the city branches for the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library; a daughter, Michelle Sessum; three sons, William A. Jr., Michael L. and Jason E.; four sisters, Shirley Hailstock, Sallie Hailstock, Loretta Hailstock and LaShondrey Hailstock Robinson; 10 grandchildren and many great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday in St. Philip’s Episcopal Church, 18 Sussex St.

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