BOARD of DIRECTORS
Cathy Brant has just finished her third term as President but will continue as the editor of the Friends' Newsletter. She has always used the library, “first doing term papers in high school, then helping my English students do theirs. I now enjoy searching for new books to read, both in the library and online.” Cathy is a retired teacher who has taught at Palm Springs High School and College of the Desert. She is from a long-time desert family and has lived here most of her life.
"My first trip to a public library is still a
very vivid memory – my mind just exploded with words and pictures and ideas! The
public library became an important part of my life, no matter where I’ve
lived since then because it connected me to that community. When my husband and I moved from Chicago in 2015, I quickly sought out the Palm Springs Library, joined and
shortly thereafter became a volunteer for the Friends. I was delighted
to accept the invitation to join the FOPSL Board and am thrilled to be part of
an organization dedicated to life-long learning and literacy, with the hope to
preserve and further improve our wonderful community resource.
"I am also a volunteer for the Palm Springs International Film Festival and as a retired Physician/Gynecologist at the Coachella Valley Volunteers in Medicine on Fridays in Indio."
J. Joseph Dunaway
Jay Dunaway's involvement with the Library began in 2015 as a volunteer. His backgrounds in accounting, writing and (particularly) desktop publishing made him an immediate fit for PSL's Accessing the Past.org effort to digitize the Library's archives -- which now has over 3 terabytes of city history available. The satisfaction from such "hands-on history" work resulted in Jay's increased desire to serve the community he has loved for eight years and serving as Treasurer has added further satisfaction. "I've never before been committed to the place I've lived; Palm Springs changed all that and the Library's fantastic staff and crucially important mission are the primary reasons I deeply value this particular community."
Richard Ellis joined the Board thanks to his early exposure to books. “From a very young age I've found reading and libraries provided me with a great deal of enjoyment and comfort in life. I really believe the library to be a center of any community, so volunteering with the Friends just seemed a natural fit for me.” He has served as Book Sales Chair for the past four years. His past work in the retail music and book businesses made helping with our sales efforts "a logical way to help the Friends and our great Library."
Michael Hirschbein originally began volunteering at the Library by helping with the children's Summer Reading program, the DVD & CD sales and at special events. He felt that the group of wonderful, caring folks working for the Friends shared his own goals to promote reading, literacy and community involvement. When asked why he wanted to join the Board, Michael replied: "This will be my first experience on the Board and I'm also looking forward to joining the Events Committee." Michael has lived in Palm Springs since 2012, after retiring as an architect in Los Angeles; he is also on the Palm Springs Planning Commission.
Milt Levinson has been a resident of Palm Springs for 42 years. He previously has served on the Library Board as a member and President. He has also served on the Friends' Board as its President. Milt owned Ramon Pharmacy in Palm Springs and has worked as a Clinical Pharmacist for the Riverside-San Bernardino Indian Health Consortium. He believes that every child needs to have books that they can call their own and, through Rotary International, has placed dictionaries and reading materials into the local elementary schools.
"Volunteering with the Friends is a way to give back to the community. Literacy is my passion. In my travels, I've noted that the viability of a community can be determined by its Library. I am proud of ours -- the Library represents the community's soul."
Laura Miller is currently serving as a tireless Volunteer Coordinator for all of our events. "I love the Library and want to help it grow to meet the needs of our changing community. I am an active volunteer -- working at the Friends' Book Sales and on the Membership Committee, at the Mizell Senior Center and with the Neighborhood Safety and Security Committee. I have always been interested in libraries since growing up in L. A. and spending many after-school hours in one."
Nanci Morrison has taken on the job of Secretary for the Board, even as she continues to serve on both the Finance and Events Committees. She writes "I have loved books since I was a child and the book-mobile would come every two weeks. Reading is the key to knowledge and being able to read well makes everything in life easier. I would like everyone to benefit from the joys of reading and all the Library has to offer. It is such a delightful place!"
Cynthia Rojo Prieto
Cynthia Rojo Prieto has been a resident of Palm Springs since she moved here with her family in 1943. She began visiting the Welwood Library at age seven and is a regular patron of the main Library Center today. She brings a lifetime of professional Public Relations experience to our Board, including advanced degrees in education. She worked teaching in local schools, as a sales representative for the Avis/Greyline Corporation, a promotions assistant for the Palm Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau and as a City Energy Analyst. She began playing the piano at age five and her love of music has led to performing as a pianist, organist, choir leader and teacher of piano, voice and guitar. She is presently American Legion Auxiliary Secretary and Chaplain.
Chris Seidel served as President of the Friends' Board of Directors for four years and now works as a member of the Events Committee. He has an extensive business background in the management of not-for-profit organizations and has been instrumental
with the Friends in establishing a formal strategic plan, a strategic communications plan
and a web site devoted specifically to the Friends. "I am in favor of anything that can
be done to promote reading, learning and literacy; the Friends of the Palm Springs Library does just that!"
Barbara Stanford joined the Board in 2010 and has served as Membership Chair since 2011. A long-time library patron, she maintains the contact information for member mailings and renewal notifications. "The Membership Committee has been exploring methods by which the Friends can better reach our community and increase membership and we encourage you to 'Tell a Friend' about the Friends and invite him, her or them to join us in our upcoming activities."
Wanda Turman is not new to libraries; she and her three siblings were the children of a railroad man who lived all over Southern California, from the beach to the Colorado River. After college, she worked for the State of California in different capacities over twenty-five years, spending the final years with the California Department of Corrections in Blythe. She retired to Palm Springs six years ago and has kept busy volunteering for small theater groups and helping the Friends with Book Sales and Library events. "I love the library," she said. "The first thing we would do when moving to a new town was to check in at the library. Then it wasn’t a new town anymore!” She now also assists with book sorting and membership mailings.
Jacque Wachs, the Friend's newest President, has been a board member since 2014 and currently serves on the Board Development and Events Committees. "My fondest childhood memories are of going to the library each week with my mother and picking out special books. That library provided me with an opportunity to see the world through books and acted as one of the cornerstones in our small Central California town. Now, the Palm Springs Library provides a place for young and old while remaining an important part in the cultural history of the city of Palm Springs. I want to be able to help preserve our Library and the many programs and services it offers to our residents and visitors every year."
Jacque is retired from the Social Services field and is married to local CPA, Brian Wachs. "We moved to Palm Springs to be part of a community where we could volunteer our time." She is also an active member with the Rotary Club.
Kathy Weyer is a writer, having retired from many different professions including Human Resources Administration, Marriage and Family Counseling and running several non-profit agencies. Her experiences in those roles have given her fodder for writing fiction and some fact-based articles that have run in national magazines.
A native San Diegan, she recently moved to Palm Springs with her husband of 36 years, two black labs named Nick and Nora, and a black cat named Freddie, who is her office mate and is sometimes helpful, but not always, at the keyboard.
She is now our Membership liaison and you can find Kathy at www.kathyweyer.com
on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/kathyweyerauthor or here on our website at email@example.com with any questions or suggestions.