Catherine J. Penprase has been a lifelong user and supporter of public libraries. After 20 years as a housewife, Cathy earned her MLS from USC and spent 17 years working as a librarian. Positions included San Marino Public Library, Director of a special grant project for MCLS, Director of the Commerce Library, and Adult Services Manager of the Ventura County Library. After retiring in 1990, she became very active in library organizations and as a library advocate.
With the California Library Association, she served on the Nominating Committee, the President's Award Committee, the Continuing Education Committee, the Public Relations Committee and two terms on the Legislative Committee. She is a member of the Black Gold System Advisory Committee and has served as Chair several times. She was a public representative for the Gold Coast Region of the Library of California. Locally, she has been President of the Friends of the Port Hueneme Library for many years and Legislative Chair for the San Buenaventura Friends. During her years with CPLA she served as President twice, and also as Secretary, Legislative Chair and Workshop Chair. She is now on the Advisory Committee.
Karen Dyer believes that libraries provide access to information for all people and must be preserved and expanded. The value and multiple purposes of libraries must not be underestimated.
In addition to her work as a library volunteer with her local library Friends, her 12-year stint as a member of the Alameda County Library Advisory Commission, two years on the California Library Association Assembly, two years on the Bay Area Library Information System Advisory Board, and work on various CLA committees, Karen has served on CPLA as:
President for two and three-quarters terms (assuming the duties of president in 1999 when then-president Patricia Baur left the state); Northern Regional Representative; Intellectual Freedom Committee Chairperson; workshop co-chair; website chairperson; newsletter liaison; and still serves as list owner for the CPLA listserv as well as being a member of the advisory board to the CPLA Board.
Karen also shares that although she wanted to be a librarian when she grew up, she has been an executive secretary since 1966.