Long Beach Public Library Foundation

Welcoming Julia Huang to the Board of Directors

Julia Y.C. Huang is the Founder and CEO of Intertrend, a multicultural creative agency at the intersection of emerging trends and the interaction between brands and consumers. Intertrend is known in the industry to create deeply resonant and exceptional consumer experiences for leading brands in automotive, financial services, retail, entertainment, pharmaceutical and telecom.

Taiwanese American-born, raised and educated in Japan and Taiwan, Huang went to grad school to study communications at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After working in New York City and Los Angeles in product development and then in Mergers & Acquisitions, a chance opportunity led Huang to the field of communications and the founding of Intertrend in 1991.

As the CEO of Intertrend, Huang is responsible for managing two award-winning companies headquartered in Long Beach, California: Intertrend and Imprint, an incubator for new businesses. Known for her strong belief that diversity drives creativity, she is a constant contributor to industry thought-leadership content, events, and academia. She was named by Avenue Magazine as one of the 500 most influential Asian Americans and in 2014, Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Conference selected Julia as one of the Top Ten Entrepreneurs in the U.S. Most recently, Julia was named the City National Bank Entrepreneur of the Year bestowed upon her by the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. Over the years, Intertrend is consistently selected as the 100 Top Female-Owned Businesses by the Los Angeles Business Journal.

Intertrend has won numerous industry awards including the American Advertising Award; the ANA Multicultural Excellence Award; the Gold Award for Creative Campaign of the Year from the Asian American Advertising Federation (3AF); and the Marketer of the Year Award from 3AF. In addition, Intertrend won the People’s Choice for Exhibition of the Year at the Frame Magazine Awards and the Bronze Cube for Spatial Design at the ADC 99th Annual Awards, both for The Art of Bloom exhibition.

Huang is an active member of the Long Beach and greater Los Angeles communities. In addition to serving on the Library Foundation Board of Directors, she serves on the board for KCRW/National Public Radio as well as volunteering her time with the Long Beach Economic Development Partnership and supporting Long Beach Walls (formerly Pow!Wow! Long Beach).

Having been raised in different cultural environments, Huang stresses the importance of community and civic engagement. She has received many accolades for her philanthropic activities supporting arts and culture, both locally and globally.

Welcoming Colleen Bentley to the Board of Directors

Colleen Bentley joins the Long Beach Public Library Foundation Board of Directors after many years of volunteering her time and expertise to support the Library Foundation’s advocacy work as a member of the Public Affairs Committee. In addition to her work with the Library Foundation, she currently serves on the Long Beach Transit Board of Directors, CSULB Alumni Council, Long Beach Community Improvement League Board of Directors, Leadership Long Beach Honorary Board of Governors, and previously with the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) AND Public Information Officers Advisory Committee.

Colleen worked at the California State University Chancellor’s Office for 25 years, where she served as Public Affairs Director and Special Projects Director. Her work included working with the Chancellor, Board of Trustees, and the 23 campus presidents on media relations, communication issues, and video/web projects. Prior to her role with the CSU Chancellor’s Office, Colleen was the Associate Director of Public Information for the University of California, Irvine, and also worked as a reporter for the San Pedro News Pilot and the Las Vegas Sun. She earned her bachelor’s degree from California State University, Long Beach, and completed her graduate work at University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Welcoming Diane Anglin to the Board of Directors

Diane Anglin is a Senior Advisor at Carta Advisors, LLC – Clark Construction Group and previously served as Marketing Director of Clark Construction Group. She is an experienced executive with demonstrated expertise in strategy and team collaborations, who fosters an environment of creativity and exceptional teamwork to problem-solve, and fill communication gaps.

A Long Beach resident for more than two decades, Diane and her family enjoy the historic neighborhoods throughout the city and seeing the growth success of small, and diverse businesses since moving here. Raising two kids, Miles and Evan, the family spends a lot of time outside usually surfing, camping, or hiking. Often traveling to remote places such as Thailand, Costa Rica, and Nepal, to explore and celebrate other cultures. The youngest of 13 siblings she is originally from Maine. Having climbed a number of mountain peaks, several with her children including nearby Mt. Baldy, Diane is a recent author of “Balancing on the Knife Edge” – a mountaineering adventure memoir reflecting both on a harrowing trek and the teachings of her father guiding the way. In Long Beach, Diane has had a personal focus on partnering with local organizations to support underserved children and the homeless in our community. 

Diane’s community involvement includes service with COA Long Beach, Boys & Girls Clubs of Long Beach, Rebuilding Together, American Heart Association, Design Build Institute of America, Western Pacific Region, and Lean Construction Institute.

Long Beach Leaders are Readers — Mayor Robert Garcia

Long Beach Leaders are Readers is our new series in which leaders in our community share recommended reads. In celebration of LGBTQIA+ Pride Month, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia has shared the following reading recommendation.

SupermanSon of KalEl (Volume 1) by Tom Taylor, art by John Timms

I’ve loved comic books ever since I was a kid and Superman has always been my favorite character. As an immigrant to this country, seeing the story of someone who was also born somewhere else — on another planet — grow up to protect people and make the world a better place was something that really spoke to me. In this new series, Superman’s son takes up his father’s mantle and I think really takes the story in an exciting, progressive direction. One of the main ways this happens is through Jon Kent coming to terms with his LGBTQ+ identity. Even as an adult now, it still feels really impactful to see this kind of representation — especially through a medium I grew up with. I am excited to recommend this comic as a part of the Leaders are Readers program, and I hope people enjoy this heroic journey and new direction for such a classic franchise.

Summer Reading Program Launches with Live Music Performances at all 12 Public Libraries

The Long Beach Public Library invites you to blaze a new trail this summer through the annual Summer Reading program! The Long Beach Public Library Foundation is proud to sponsor this year’s program thanks to generous support from the Port of Long Beach.

From Saturday, June 18 to Saturday, August 13 readers of all ages can take part in the fun with prizes, programs, and special events designed to entertain and educate. To celebrate the launch of this year’s program, all 12 public libraries will host a live music performance during the first week of the program (June 21-24), courtesy of the Music Center of Los Angeles’ Art Grown program.

Additional support for the Summer Reading program was provided by the International Paper Foundation. Click the link below to learn more and register for this program.

Celebrating Dictionary Days with Farmers & Merchants Bank and Long Beach Students

On June 1, 2022, we celebrated Dictionary Days with our friends from the Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation at Lincoln Elementary School in Long Beach. Thanks to generous support from Farmers & Merchants Bank, the Long Beach Public Library Foundation purchased a new dictionary/thesaurus for every Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) third-grade student as part of our 19th annual Dictionary Days program. 5,000 dictionary/thesauruses were recently distributed to all LBUSD elementary schools which brings the total number of dictionaries distributed to Long Beach students through this program to more than 135,000 dictionaries.

Long Beach Public Library Foundation Board President Ryan Ballard helps a student use his new dictionary/thesaurus.

Library Foundation President, Ryan Ballard, and Christine Walker-Bowman, Co-chair of the Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation, kicked things off in the school library with an introduction about why dictionary use is so important. A dictionary/thesaurus is a crucial resource for many students who are struggling to keep up following a long period of distance learning. According to a March 2022 LBUSD report, during this first in-person school year since the pandemic began, 61 percent of elementary and 66 percent of middle school students in Long Beach read below grade level. A dictionary/thesaurus will help students stay on track.

Library Foundation Executive Director Veronica Garcia Dávalos present the “Key to Literacy” to Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Co-chair Christine Walker-Bowman.

Teacher Librarian, Cynthia Melara, then led volunteers from the Library Foundation and Farmers and Merchants Bank Foundation in helping students through a dictionary scavenger hunt to identify the definition, pronunciation, part of speech, and usage label of different words. Library Foundation Executive Director/CEO, Veronica Garcia Dávalos, closed the festivities with a gift for Ms. Walker-Bowman: a “Key to Literacy” designed and 3D printed in the Billie Jean King Main Library makerspace Studio which is funded by the Library Foundation.

LBUSD has distributed all dictionary/thesauruses to this year’s third-grade class. We look forward to more years of celebrating Dictionary Days and promoting literacy in Long Beach!

Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Director Tiffany Roberts (left) and Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Co-chair Christine Walker-Bowman guide students on dictionary use.
Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Co-chair Christine Walker-Bowman, Library Foundation Board President Ryan Ballard, Teacher Librarian Cynthia Melara, Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Director Tiffany Roberts, Library Foundation Executive Director Veronica Garcia Dávalos, LBUSD Library Coordinator Crystal Miranda, and Assistant Principal Monica Manipon.
Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Coordinator Karen Cortez leads students in a dictionary scavenger hunt.
Library Foundation Deputy Executive Director of Development Erica Bradley helps a student with their Dictionary Days activity.
Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation Intern Jillian Chade helps a student use his new dictionary/thesaurus.

Long Beach Leaders are Readers — Anil Pandya

Long Beach Leaders are Readers is our new series in which leaders in our community share recommended reads available in the Long Beach Public Library’s collection. In celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month 2022, Library Foundation Board member, Anil Pandya, has shared the following reading recommendation.

As I am currently involved in a research project for a book I wish to write, my recent readings involve economics and politics, including some biographies of writers on these subjects, and have not read anything for pleasure. However, a few months ago at the urging of my wife, I read The Lady and the Monk by Pico Iyer.

To my surprise the book turned out to be highly pleasurable. It is a brilliant and moving biographical, personal, and cultural account of a highly accomplished and well-published itinerant travel writer, of Indian origin, who meets a remarkable Japanese woman in Kyoto Japan and marries her, while on an exploration of one of the world’s most beautiful cities— Kyoto. This is a marvelous book; easy to read, beautifully written, and sensitive and nuanced. It is also funny and sad but also insightful. My reaction when I read the book, which still lingers with me is the intelligence of the writer who has been able to observe a culture so different from that of the West, and so understandable from my own Indian cultural background from an Asian perspective and yet very different! Although, published in the 1990s, it is a very contemporary work. The LA Times Book Review on the back cover reads “A beautifully written book about someone looking for ancient dreams in a strange modern place.” And the blurb at the back states that it is “… a marvelously ironic yet heartfelt book that is at once a portrait of a cross-cultural infatuation- and misunderstanding—and a delightfully fresh way of seeing both the old Japan and the very new.” True, but it is also much more than seeing Japan. I strongly recommend the book to the young, the old and also the cynical among us, that you will love the book.

A few biographical notes:
Pico Iyer lives in Japan and has a home in Santa Barbara. His mother Nandini Nanak Mehta, until recently, taught Religion at a local university; his father studied and taught Philosophy at Oxford. Pico’s name is Siddharth Pico Raghavan Iyer. His parents grew up in India, then went to England and later moved to the US. His name is a combination of the Buddha’s name, Siddharth, and the 15th century Italian philosopher Pico della Mirandola, the writer of The Oration on the Dignity of Man, which has been called the Renaissance Manifesto. European Renaissance eventually led to enlightenment in Europe as it emerged out of religious and political conflict and violent middle ages. Pico Iyer’s other books include Video Night in Kathmandu, The Global Soul among several others, and his essays have been published in Time, Harper’s BAZAAR, the New York Review of Books, and the New York Times.

Save the Date for Grape Expectations

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2022
5:00 to 9:00 PM
HOTEL MAYA

Join the Long Beach Public Library Foundation for an evening to remember with a lavish gourmet dinner, incredible wines, and exciting online and live auctions! The Grape Expectations gala is the Library Foundation’s signature fundraising event to support our work on behalf of the 12 Long Beach public libraries.


Please contact Deputy Executive Director of Development, Erica Bradley, at erica@lbplfoundation.org regarding sponsorship opportunities and to purchase tables.


Stay tuned for more details, including a sneak peek of this year’s menu and fine wine pairings.

Billie Jean King Main Library KidSpace Dedicated to John & Helen Apostle in Honor of $1 Million Gift to Children’s Programming

From left to right: Jim Sullos, Monika Lopez and Gary Van Arnam, John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation Co-trustees; Councilwoman Mary Zendejas; Ryan Ballard, Library Foundation Board President; Veronica Garcia Dávalos, Library Foundation Executive Director/CEO; Jay Swigart and Joan Solomon, John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation Co-trustees
Photo by Michael Fratino

On May 13, 2022, the Long Beach Public Library and Long Beach Public Library Foundation dedicated the children’s library at the Billie Jean King Main Library, the KidSpace, to the late John and Helen Apostle in a celebration attended by families, local leaders, and Library supporters. This honor recognizes a $1 million gift from the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation to support children’s programming. This gift was the largest pledge made to the Library Foundation as part of its New Main Campaign, which concluded in September 2020 after raising more than $3.3 million for technology, programs, and enhancements at Long Beach’s newest library. The New Main Campaign was co-chaired by Billie Jean King and Mayor Robert Garcia, with nearly 500 community members, book clubs, foundations, and local organizations contributing gifts of all sizes.

“We are proud to fund crucial programs for children who depend on the Long Beach Public Library,” said Jim Sullos, Trustee of the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation. “This important work will build a lasting legacy for John and Helen Apostle.”

Jim Sullos, Co-trustee of the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation
Photo by Michael Fratino

“The Billie Jean King Main Library is an incredible space and a center for education and community development in Downtown Long Beach,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “I want to thank the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation for their generous support of these programs and resources for children and families in our community.”

The Apostle Foundation’s $1 million gift is being contributed over ten years. Half of the funds will be used to establish the John and Helen Apostle Endowed Fund for Children, to help these programs serve children for generations to come. The funds received have enabled the Library to hire three bilingual Library staff who design and implement children’s programs in Spanish and English, such as Dive into Reading/Sumérgete a Leer, Circle of Stories/Círculo de Cuentos, and Cuentos y Cantos. The Billie Jean King Main Library is the hub of the Long Beach Public Library system, and with this new support, these programs can be replicated at all 11 neighborhood libraries.

Photo by Michael Fratino

“The generous gift from the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation is one of the largest gifts the Library Foundation has ever received,” said Veronica Garcia Dávalos, Executive Director/CEO of the Library Foundation. “It comes when Long Beach youth need support to improve their reading capabilities and succeed in school. We are proud to honor John and Helen Apostle with this beautiful display in the Billie Jean King Main Library.”

According to a March 2022 report from the Long Beach Unified School District, during the first in-person school year since the pandemic began, 61 percent of elementary and 66 percent of middle school students in Long Beach read below grade level. According to a 2021 report released by the City Auditor, the Library should provide more materials and programs in languages other than English. Due to its limited budget, 95 percent of physical Library materials and 97 percent of programs are in English, even though 30 percent of residents in several Long Beach neighborhoods have limited English proficiency. It is crucial that the Library receive the funding necessary to provide more resources in Spanish, Khmer, Tagalog, and other languages spoken in Long Beach homes. This $1 million gift from the John Apostle and Helen Apostle Foundation has already made a significant impact in supporting important multilingual Library programming for youth in Long Beach.

Councilwoman Zendejas addresses the crowd at the dedication.
Photo by Michael Fratino

“The Library’s children’s programming is needed now more than ever,” said Ryan Ballard, Long Beach Public Library Foundation Board President. “The impact of the Apostle Foundation’s gift will surely be felt throughout our communities, and we hope will inspire greater generosity in others as we seek to improve the outcomes for all Long Beach youth. We simply couldn’t be more excited and grateful!”

John and Helen Apostle were Long Beach-based entrepreneurs who were actively involved in local civic and philanthropic endeavors. The Apostles, former owners of the Golden Sails Inn in Long Beach, were longtime supporters of the City’s libraries. They placed their estate in their charitable foundation to benefit the community, needy children, and the elderly.

The KidSpace dedicated to John and Helen Apostle with a plaque and a new art wall featuring dolphins leaping through waves is the ocean-themed children’s section of the Billie Jean King Main Library. It contains a collection of approximately 45,000 books and materials for youth ages zero to 12, computers with tools and software just for children, interactive educational stations, study tables and lounge chairs for reading and learning, a Studio Jr offering makerspace STEAM workshops, and the Rotary Storytime Theater. All KidSpace resources are available whenever the Billie Jean Main Library is open. Visit the Library’s website at longbeach.gov/library for open hours and the Library’s program and events calendar.

All LBUSD 3rd Grade Students to Receive a New Dictionary/Thesaurus Thanks to Dictionary Days Sponsored by Farmers & Merchants Bank Foundation

Thanks to generous support from Farmers & Merchants Bank, the Long Beach Public Library Foundation was able to purchase a new dictionary/thesaurus for every Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) third-grade student.

The 2021/2022 school year marks the Dictionary Days program’s 19th year since it was founded in 2003 by the Library Foundation and the Earl B. and Loraine H. Miller Foundation. Since that year, more than 135,000 new dictionaries have been distributed to Long Beach third-grade students.

Third grade is an important year for students because it marks their transition from learning to read to reading to learn. According to the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, students who do not read proficiently by the fourth grade are four times more likely to leave high school without a diploma. Third grade is an important year for students because it marks their transition from learning to read to reading to learn.

A dictionary/thesaurus is a crucial resource for many students who are struggling to keep up in school following a long period of distance learning. According to a March 2022 LBUSD report, during this first in-person school year since the pandemic began, 61 percent of elementary and 66 percent of middle school students in Long Beach read below grade level. Additionally, 8 percent of elementary and 35 percent of middle school students read at three or more grade levels behind their current grade. A dictionary/thesaurus will help students stay on track.

LBUSD will distribute the dictionary/thesauruses to all third-grade students at their schools in the coming weeks.