Friday morning, I had the privilege to attend the groundbreaking ceremony for what will be the new Costa Mesa library. It was great to be among friends and to celebrate a momentous occasion. It gave me time to reflect.
I started my love for libraries in grade school. Danbrook Elementary School in Anaheim found me checking out numerous books. And, the Buena Park Library would bring the library to my front door with its bookmobile.
And, there is the parent tape from my mother, "why spend your money on candy when you can buy a book, which lasts longer?" So, I started a habit of purchasing books while attending Orangeview Junior High through a service that may have been called "Scholastic Book Club." My own library was beginning.
When I moved into our first Costa Mesa home, passing by the Mesa Verde Library on a Saturday morning would find me pulling over for the outdoor Friends of the Library book sale. I am now a compulsive library used book sale attender — even when I’m traveling. If I see a used book sale sign up at a library, I pull over. The only thing that has slowed me down of late, besides this job, is the lack of space for more shelving in my home. Let’s just say, I have become a serious book collector. Especially in the areas of California and Western States Jewish History.
While serving as Vice President of the California Sesquicentennial Foundation Board, I had the privilege of working with State Librarian Kevin Starr, a California historian extraordinaire (see MOORLACH UPDATE — New Geography — September 4, 2013 september 4, 2013 john moorlach, MOORLACH UPDATE — CalWatchdog — February 23, 2010 february 24, 2010 john moorlach, MOORLACH UPDATE — Seal Beach Sun — March 8, 2013 march 8, 2013 john moorlach, and MOORLACH UPDATE — The New Yorker — August 30, 2011 august 30, 2011 john moorlach). I own most of his books and he kindly autographed them with genuine notes. It was difficult to adjourn in his memory on the Senate Floor this year.
In my early years as a County Supervisor, one of the fun grand openings was the Katie Wheeler Library in the city of Irvine. Joan Irvine Smith called me. She had just taken a tour of the facility, which replicated her childhood ranch house, and shared her impressions. She felt that she had gone back to the fourth grade, she was so giddy, excited and pleased with the final result.
Why all the rambling? Well, the Daily Pilot was kind enough to attend the event and it even took a great photo. But, I was the only one mentioned by name in the description. So, for old and new friends, here is the list from left to right.
Tom Hatch, City Manager — Tom would recruit Rick Francis away from me. Rick is now working for John Wayne Airport, so we are members of the Rick Francis Former Bosses Club (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Alumni and Recognition — June 7, 2017 june 7, 2017 john moorlach).
Raja Sethuraman, Costa Mesa Public Services Director. Raja and I spent plenty of time plenty of time together at Orange County Transportation Authority meetings over the years (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Tom Johnson — September 6, 2013 september 6, 2013 john moorlach).
Steve Johnson, principal of the Culver City-based Johnson Favaro architectural firm.
Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley, who has been carefully reviewing our efforts to assist the city during the closing of the Fairview Development Center (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Crushing Blow — July 21, 2017 july 21, 2017 john moorlach, MOORLACH UPDATE — Legislative Efforts — June 29, 2017 june 29, 2017 john moorlach and MOORLACH UPDATE — Fairview Developmental Center — February 11, 2017 february 11, 2017 john moorlach).
Helen Fried, Director of the Orange County Libraries, for whom I voted to replace her predecessor, John Adams, as the Department Head. And she has been working on Costa Mesa’s library improvement concerns for quite some time (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Libraries — March 29, 2013 march 29, 2013 john moorlach).
I’m having too much fun reminiscing. I’ll save the others for another day. Next is me, then my successor, Supervisor Michelle Steel, Costa Mesa Councilwoman Sandy Genis, Costa Mesa Councilman Jim Righeimer (who has been mentioned in more than 50 UPDATEs), Costa Mesa Assistant City Manager Tamara Letourneau, and Costa Mesa City Councilman John Stephens.
Senator John Moorlach, center, members of the Costa Mesa City Council and other dignitaries turn soil during the Lions Park Projects Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Donald Dungan Library on Friday, July 28, 2017.
Photo by DREW A. KELLEY, CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER
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