Mahalo to our 2020 Volunteers!
- Pam Ito
- Susan Lessa
- Richard Lessa
Each year, Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i’s Board of Directors chooses at least one Volunteer of the Year from amongst our dedicated year-round volunteers. This award goes to those volunteers who have given their time and skills to furthering our organization over the years, daily, and exceptionally. FLH values all volunteers, without whom our organization could not thrive. Therefore we are pleased to recognize a few stand-outs each year among the hundreds that passionately strive at our warehouses and book sales.
Pamela (Pam) Ito was born and raised in Mānoa, where she still resides. Pam has been volunteering with Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i (FLH) for over 10-years. She currently volunteers in the Art section helping to frame art donations. She started volunteering with FLH when she joined her daughter, Avree, who was participating in a community service project for the University of Hawaiʻi. Prior to volunteering with FLH, Pam worked in retail and other fields. When she is not volunteering at FLH, Pam enjoys working in her yard and attending sporting events. Pam credits her life-long interest in community service to her parents, who were active community volunteers. As a teenager, Pam belonged to a YMCA club that participated in service projects, including UNICEF and Special Olympics. She was also a parent volunteer at her daughter’s schools, and a founding member of the Honokai Hale – Nanakai Gardens neighborhood watch patrol.
Susan Lessa was born in the United Kingdom and later lived in Maryland. Her husband Richard Lessa was born and raised in New Jersey. The Lessaʻs moved to Hawaiʻi in 1970 where Richard attended graduate school at the University of Hawaiʻi. They currently reside in Nuʻuanu and have lived in Hawaiʻi for almost 50 years. Susan has been an FLH volunteer for 16-years, and Richard has volunteered with FLH for the past 14-years. The Lessa’s currently volunteer in the FLH Art section framing art donations. They both were also book category pricers pre-pandemic, Richard helped to price Poetry, Philosophy, Drama, and Hobbies and Susan priced Reference and Humor. Prior to volunteering at FLH, Susan was an office manager with a small architectural firm in Honolulu and Richard was a University of Hawaiʻi English teacher. The volunteering began when Susan was urged by former librarian and FLH volunteer Nancy Nott to become an FLH volunteer after retiring. In those days, Richard joined her when he wasn’t teaching. Susan enjoys taking art classes and making Hawaiian quilts in her free time. Richard likes watercolor painting and making ʻukuleles and guitars. The Lessa’s believe that volunteering with FLH is their way of thanking the libraries for the joy they provided throughout the years.
2019 Awardees: Antoinette (Toni B.) Borreliz, Jan Bullock, Dennis Chun
2018 Awardees: Sam Dunn, Jim Murray, Lynette Wageman
2017 Awardees: Valrie Griffith, Richard (Dick) and El Burson
2016 Awardees: Ellen Schneider, Dianne Towey, Reiko Harris
2015 Awardees: Cindy Miller, Bernice Mau, Sadako Tengan, Elizabeth Powers
2014 Awardees: Cynthia Lee, Shirley Naito, Mitsue Stout
2013 Awardees: Sally Harper & Nancy Nott
2012 Awardee: Iris Wiley
2011 Awardee: Marlise Tellander
2010 Awardees: Mary Judd, Mark Luppino, and Kathy Tschappat