Husband and wife, and longtime friends of CSUN and the Oviatt Library, Robert (Bob) Gohstand and Maureen Kelly recently made a very generous donation to the Library, with a view toward further expanding their endowment that will sustain the Reading Room located in the Library Gallery in the west wing on the second floor of the Library. The gift will provide the space with a fresh, updated, and comfortable environment; it also will help support a biennial lecture series in honor of the Gohstands. In addition, the Oviatt Library will maintain an active website to keep the Reading Room’s presence and events in the public eye.
Bob and Maureen have also created a new endowment in memory of Bob’s late wife, Faith Conragan Gohstand, which will help to purchase materials for the Oviatt Library collection in the areas of art, design and gardens. This is a fitting and poignant tribute to Faith Gohstand, who was a lifelong artist, gardener and educator. In addition to his philanthropic work, Bob is also the founder of the Old China Hands Archive housed here in the Library. This unique and valuable collection of books, photos and oral histories serves as both a repository and resource for information about non-Chinese inhabitants of China prior to 1949. Bob continues to curate exhibits, one of which, “Seamanship and Settlement: The Portuguese Maritime Tradition and Macau’s Architectural Duality,” is currently on display in the core hallways on the second, third, and fourth floors of the Library (please see our Library events page for more detailed information: http://library.csun.edu/events).
Bob’s long affiliation with CSUN extends well beyond the pillars and porticos of the Oviatt Library. He is a Professor Emeritus from the Department of Geography in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences here on campus. He has been a long time faculty representative on the Friends of the Library Board, and continues to serve there. As well, he was a member of the Faculty Senate Library Committee for twenty years, and chair of that body for ten years. Bob was also the 2006 recipient of the Emeriti Merit Award, which honors retired faculty members who continue to support the university.
We are deeply thankful to Bob and Maureen for the continued giving of their time, talents, resources, and especially their hearts. The faculty, staff, students and surrounding community are highly fortunate to have such devoted supporters. We look forward to the official re-dedication of the Robert Gohstand and Maureen Kelly Reading Room in the near future, when we will all have an opportunity to celebrate and share our deep appreciation for their many gifts. For now, we are more than honored to introduce them to you here as longtime friends of CSUN, and forever family of the Oviatt Library.