WHO ARE THE FRIENDS?
The Friends of the Torrance Library (FOTL) is an independent, nonprofit organization whose mission is to raise funds for the library's adult and children's programs and new library services. We were organized in 1967 as a 501(c)(3) corporation.
Through membership dues, contributions, and book sales, the Friends have donated over $2 million to the library. We operate with minimal overhead. All the work is done by volunteers; we have no paid staff. All funds raised go directly to support the library.
Board of Directors
Gayle is the president of the Friends. She retired from the aerospace industry, having worked as a secretary and in finance. A love of reading led her to volunteer with the Friends, and she likes giving our donated books a new home.
Marcie is vice president of the Friends and chair of Lobby Sales; the large display on the first floor of the Katy Geissert Civic Center Library. During her 40 years in Los Angeles public schools, Marcie taught English and served as a high school counselor and administrator. Originally from Indiana, she moved to California for graduate school at Berkeley and fell in love with our beautiful state. Marcie loves being surrounded by books and people who love them.
Cynthia is the Friends Secretary. She is a native Californian, born in Long Beach and attended local public schools and UCLA. Retired after 26 years with LAUSD working in Adult Education. An avid reader and a member of 2 book clubs led her to volunteer with the Friends. Being retired allows Cynthia to work with FOTL and enjoy time with family, especially grandchildren.
Connie is the Treasurer of the Friends of the Library in Torrance. Her love of reading brought her to the FOTL for the opportunity to work with books and the other volunteers. She is a native Californian born in Torrance. Now retired, Connie previously worked in accounting and payroll.
Nancy is the Membership chairperson for FOTL and a member of the Internet committee. She a resident of the Beach Cities for over 30 years and attended El Camino College and Loyola Marymount University majoring in History and Art History. In a more than 20 year career she was a project manager for several major telecommunications companies in the Torrance area. Her appreciation of the materials and programs offered by the public libraries during the COVID-19 epidemic inspired Nancy to volunteer with FOTL. Now retired, Nancy enjoys her time reconnecting with hobbies, friends, and make new friendships.
Ron serves as Historian of the Friends. He previously served as Treasurer for FOTL and co-chair of the Internet Committee. For over 30 years, he was an optical engineer at commercial and aerospace companies. He joined the Friends to give back to the community some of what he has received. He is an avid reader of mystery and suspense novels.
Kris as book chair helps to coordinate the Friends book sales. She also helps with Lobby Sales. Kris graduated from Loyola Marymount and worked for 20 years as a systems programmer. She graduated from L.A. Culinary Institute and changed careers. Now retired after almost 20 years as pastry chef for King’s Hawaiian Bakery, she enjoys meeting and working with the very generous Friends volunteers. Kris’s favorite section of the library is cookbooks.
Tony is our representative to the library commission and is also the Publicity chairperson. He is an active member of the South Bay community. He is a Real Estate Agent by day and a passionate chef by night. He has two young kids in elementary school. The library is his family's go-to place for all the new story books and the kids love reading, too. Tony loves the COOKING section at the library which is where he got his mad cooking skills. He volunteers in the City of Torrance as a Planning Commissioner and UCI Alumni Association member. He believes firmly "you make a living by what you get, you make a life by what you give."
Previous Board Members
Burt is immediate past president of the Friends. After a 35-year career as a research and development engineer/scientist in the aerospace field, he retired to spend the next 20 years with the Friends. He has enjoyed seeing the book world adapt to new technologies, and books become far more available in digital format. Additionally, he co-chaired the Internet sales activities for the organization.
Geneva is no longer the Publicity chairperson but is still active with the Publicity committee. She solicited articles for the newsletter and does the editing and mailing. She also sent requests to local newspapers and city sites to publicize sales dates. Previously, she worked on many different aspects of the airline reservation system computers. Geneva reads ebooks, but finds that reading actual books is a better experience.
Teresa has served in various capacities since the establishment of the Friends in 1967. Over the years, her positions have included president, secretary, membership chair and publicity chair. "It's always stimulating to work with books and readers."
Pauline began volunteering with the Friends in 2012. Bright, funny and full of energy she served simultaneously as the Vice President, Secretary and Book Sale Chair.