About Us

Our Mission, Our Board, Our Annual Report

The Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library, Inc, (501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation, Tax ID 23-7292743) was first formed by concerned citizens in 1950.  Today, more than 700 Friends help to maintain our library's role as a cornerstone of community life.

We use our membership fees and donations to purchase digital materials and to supplement the traditional catalog.  We also make possible dozens of programs offered to the community each year including author nights, film screenings, cultural events, and musical and theatrical performances.  In addition we are a major underwriter for the annual Summer Reading Program which serves approximately 2000 children of the community for free. In addition, we sponsor the completely self-financed Restoration Concert Series.


Friends Non-Discrimination Policy

The Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library, Inc. does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, clients, and the public.

Meet our Board of Directors


Kevin O'Neill, President

Kevin is a second-generation South Pasadena resident and father of a 7th grader at SPMS. Kevin joined the Friends of the Library last year as the Fundraising Chair and brings much warmth and energy as he continues to support the organization and the Library as President this year. 

Kim Omens, Executive Vice President

Kim grew up visiting the South Pasadena Public Library and has many happy memories of the annual summer reading program in particular.  She is excited to be able to give back to the library and the South Pasadena community through her work on the Friends board.

Melisa Wilson, CFO

Melisa has been a resident of South Pasadena since 2007 where she raised her daughter and together visited the South Pasadena Library regularly. After retiring from a 30-year career at a bank, Melisa has a wonderful opportunity to give back to her community and to the cherished library specifically in her role as the Chief Financial Officer of the Friends of the Library. 

Karen Weinstock, Endowment Financial Officer


Karen became a regular visitor to the South Pasadena Library when she moved here over 20 years ago. After serving for several years on the boards of the local PTAs, Karen found a new home on the Friends' Board as EVP of Endowments and Memorials. Not long after that she became a co-chair of the Friends' Bookstore and help to manage and oversee the many volunteers that share in the enjoyment of running the bookstore, whose sales provide much of the Friends' revenue that supports a variety of Library programs and services.

Kristen Dube, Restoration Concerts Financial Officer


As a life-long resident, Kristen’s appreciation for reading and especially for the South Pasadena Public Library began at the knee of Viola Sirolos, the much beloved children's librarian in the 1960's.  She has been proud to volunteer for the Friends bookstore and serve on the Friends board in various capacities over the past 20+ years.  Kristen currently serves as Restoration Concerts Finance Officer and looks forward to helping shape the future of this community icon.

Karen Sima, Membership Director


Karen has been a resident of South Pasadena since 1982 when she moved from Orange County upon getting married.  She is an avid reader and has especially enjoyed the wonderful collection of ebooks and audiobooks the library has to offer. Karen was the Reading Specialist for over 20 years at South Pasadena's Marengo Elementary School.  She is now retired and is enjoying volunteering for the Friends of the Library for the great city of South Pasadena.

Karen Bell, Bookstore Chair


Karen joined the Board of the Friends of the Library in 2021, after retiring from a teaching career. She wanted to give her time and energies to the South Pasadena library as a tribute to her father, who taught her to cherish reading and public libraries. Karen is co-chair of the Friends of the Library Bookstore, which raises approximately $40,000 per year for the library. 

Megan McGrail, Secretary

As an educator and mother of two avid young readers, Megan has always valued the importance of a dynamic community library.  She is a passionate advocate for high-quality literacy access for all and is eager to take on the role of Secretary this year.

Nicole Sotomayor, Communications Director

Nicole was born and raised in LA, but when she and her husband moved to South Pasadena several years ago, it truly felt like home. She is currently a member of six book clubs and loves reading at home with her husband and two cats. Passionate about both reading and supporting her local community and local businesses, Nicole looks forward to joining Friends to help spread the word about this incredible library. 

Roseanne Hui, Operations Director

Libraries have been an integral part of Roseanne's life and after returning home to South Pasadena she wanted to find ways to give back to her community. She has been proudly serving on the board of the Friends of the Library as the Communications Director and will begin her second year as the Operations Director.

Ellen Torres, Past President

As a lifelong resident of South Pasadena, the library has always been a central part of Ellen’s life.  As an active community volunteer, she is a passionate advocate for the library.  She has served on the Friends board in different capacities for the past 10 years.  Ellen has developed a strong sense of devotion to the nonprofit sector and has held leadership positions with several not-for-profit organizations. Ellen has been married for 44 years and is the proud mother to four adult children who spent many wonderful hours visiting the South Pasadena Library.


Janet Ervin, Restoration Concerts Chair