THE BOOKMARK About Libraries and Friends

by Jill Forman

Upcoming Event – Zoom program on Law and Race, in association the Glendale Public Library – Feb 4 at 6:30-8:00. Information at, under Events tab

Reading Challenge – “WinterRead.” Log books read and activities, write reviews, earn badges…who knows, maybe there will be prizes! Sign up at Vencolibrary/

Change in Hours – Walk-up hours have been cut back at some libraries. Selected library workers are currently functioning as Disaster Workers for the County, reassigned to the Fairgrounds for help with the vaccine administration program. The hours at all branches have been updated on the VCLSA website.

Online Bookstore News – ONLINE BOOKSTORE for Valentine’s Day!

VFOL Online Bookstore has just added a large donation of puzzles and novels to our offerings. If you are searching for a romantic read for Valentine’s Day or to give as a gift, we have you covered. Check out our great gift ideas for unique finds.

Friends of the Library say a huge thank you to Kathy Thomsen. Kathy joined the Friends in 2009, in response to the threatened closure of Wright Library (branch on the campus of Ventura College, closed in December 2009.) Kathy says that, even though Wright was not saved, “It was one of the best experiences of my life…the biggest outpouring of community support I’ve ever seen. Citizens who loved libraries and whose voices hadn’t been heard.” After Wright closed, Ventura had only one larger library, Foster (downtown) and a smaller branch on the Avenue.

Kathy was inspired by her participation and became President of the Friends in 2010. We used to tease her that she was “President for Life,” but she stepped down in 2018 and took on the very difficult job of Treasurer. She is moving to Tucson, but has continued to serve in that position, attending meetings via Zoom and sending out financial reports to the Board using email.

Kathy says, “The best thing for the city is to have as many libraries, and types of libraries, as possible. This can be accomplished with community partnerships between public and private entities; that is the way of the future to make citizens’ lives better in so many ways.”

Mary Olsen, current Friends President, says “Kathy Thomson has been a passionate advocate for libraries.  She never misses an opportunity to remind everyone she encounters about the great value of libraries.  During her term as president, she tirelessly promoted the restoration of library service to the east side of Ventura after the closure of Wright.  Under her leadership, Ventura Friends of the Library played a significant role in bringing the Hill Road Library to our community.

She also presided over bringing the Friends into the digital age, recognizing our need to expand our communications to include a website, Facebook page and e-newsletter.  She has been willing to take on any task, from organizing book sales to serving as President and Treasurer, which is required to sustain a vibrant Friends of the Library organization and access to libraries for residents of our city.”

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