Friends of VCU Libraries Board

The membership of the Friends of VCU Libraries is led by a board of volunteers. The Friends of VCU Libraries Board was founded in 1983 with the mission of strengthening VCU Libraries' resources and services to prepare VCU students for a lifetime of learning and to provide scholarly resources for faculty and staff. The board offers advice and support to the libraries' senior staff and sponsors programs and events throughout the year. To be considered as a board member, please become a member of the Friends of VCU Libraries. 

Portrait of Renate Forssmann-Falck

Renate Forssmann-Falck, M.D., is a retired clinical professor of psychiatry. She has volunteered in many capacities in the community and at Congregation Beth Ahabah.

She received her medical degree and completed a residency in medicine in Germany. After finishing a second residency in psychiatry at the Menninger Foundation in Topeka, Kansas, she settled in Richmond.


Kenneth Warren Foster (B.F.A. '01/A) is an instructional technologist and faculty developer who engages medical educators at VCU School of Medicine to re-imagine, reframe, and revitalize traditional teaching methods to be purposely innovative, inclusive, and accessible for diverse learning contexts. He supports online learning and assessment, promotes the scholarship of teaching and learning, and teaches a graduate course focused on educational technology for medical education. Ken has developed a thriving curriculum around digital storytelling and narrative medicine that promotes reflective practice for medical students and residents. A proud VCUarts alum, Kenneth additionally holds degrees from UVA (M.Ed. '04/E and Ed.D. '11/E).


Sharon Fuller (B.S., graphic design, University of Cincinnati) and her family have been involved with VCU and the RVA community since the 1970s. She worked in marketing and public relations in private and public sectors, including a stint as creative director for sales promotion for Thalhimers department store. Now with the Richmond Public Library, she handles marketing and communication. All members of her family have attended VCU. Her husband, Mark, graduated from RPI/VCU in advertising. Following his death, an endowed scholarship was established in his name at the Brandcenter. Both her daughters attended VCU.

Erin Hollaway Palmer wearing a scarf outdoors 

Erin Hollaway Palmer is an independent editor and graphic designer. The former managing editor of Parade and National Geographic Adventure magazines, she has worked on a wide variety of print and online publications over the past 17 years. Erin is a founding member of the Friends of East End Cemetery, the all-volunteer nonprofit that until 2020 led the effort to reclaim the historic African American burial ground from nature and neglect. Her East End–related research and writing are featured on the website she helped create, Erin graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in French.

Tiona Johnson 

Tiona Johnson B.S. ’13/H&S and B.S. ‘13/LS is a proud VCU alumnus from Danville, VA. She is a lifetime learner who supports informed decision-making professionally as an Environmental Planner and Cartographer. Tiona holds dual B.S. (’13 VCU) and M.S. (’16 VA Tech) degrees in Urban Planning and Natural Resources. During Tiona’s time at VCU, she held multiple student jobs related to literacy and VCU Libraries. She worked as a literacy coach for Elementary-aged children through America Reads and at Cabell library “in the stacks” and the Preservation Department. She is also a proud Old Girl of the VCU Women’s Rugby Club. Currently, she serves as a Volunteer Alumni Leader for VCU’s Atlanta chapter.

Stephanie Holt sitting in Cabell Library 

Stephanie L. Holt, B.S. '74/E is a proud VCU alumna. She began her career teaching business in Richmond Public Schools for 5 years, and spent the rest of her career working for Xerox Corporation in sales with a special focus in community involvement and retired after 32 years. She remains an active member of the VCU community, as a committee member for the VCU Monroe Scholars Book Award Committee. Stephanie has endowed a School of Education scholarship in the memory of her parents Rebecca and Norris Holt. She served on the VCU Alumni Board for 16 years and held the office of Secretary for several years. Stephanie was also a member of the School of Education Alumni Council for 25 years and served as President for 12 years. She has served 2 previous terms on the VCU Friends of the Library board, and was president of the board from 2016 - 2018. During the past two years she has been a member of the VCU Libraries Book Sale and Membership and Support Committees. Stephanie was awarded the Alumni Star Award from the VCU School of Education in 2005, and is a member of the VCU Founders Society.

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Murtaza (Murti) Khan graduated from VCU School of Business in 2017 with a B.S. in economics. While at VCU, Khan served as the president of the Muslim Student Association and as the Muslim community representative on the Interfaith Council of Campus Ministers. After graduation, he served in Governor McAuliffe’s administration as a fellow under Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore. He did market research to help the governor bring international business to Virginia. Khan is working on a technology project within the import/export supply chain trade. He serves on the Board of Directors of Bermuda Advocates for Responsible Development in Chesterfield and is also Civic Engagement Chair on the Islamic Center of Virginia’s outreach committee, where he works with the Virginia Interfaith Center and elected officials throughout Virginia.  


Ashley Kistler (M.A., VCU Art History; B.A., Dickinson College) has been an integral part of the Richmond arts community with a curatorial career spanning more than 30 years. She has served as director of VCUarts Anderson Gallery, curator of the Visual Arts Center of Richmond and associate curator of modern and contemporary art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. She has organized dozens of exhibitions featuring work by regional, national and international artists, as well as artists’ residencies and commissions, public art projects, lectures and symposia, film series and performing arts events. She has also authored and edited numerous exhibition catalogs, as well as the recent book Anderson Gallery: 45 Years of Art on the Edge.

Cornelia “Çam” L. Jones, a Petersburg, Va. native educated in that city’s Public School System, was awarded the B.S. in biology by Virginia State University in 1970. Her work history began in high school as a Head Start teacher aid and was followed by a college work study job as a laboratory technician in the biology department. On graduation she began a third job at MCV/VCU that lasted just short of 40 years. In the areas of Microbiology & Immunology education, biomedical research and veterinary support, her responsibilities metamorphosed, with the field, to include vaccine development research, tissue culture, veterinary diagnostics and disease surveillance testing, biohazards containment, personnel safety training, purchase and import/export of 12 species purpose-bred, genetically defined research animals for use as models of disease at VCU. Further study at VCU has included medical mycology, photography, biochemistry, pathogenic bacteriology, hematology, jewelry making and oral history. Çam’s hobbies have always included gardening, arts & crafts, cooking and sitting/learning at the feet of great knowers and thinkers who have visited this region. On retirement, new hobbies have become genetic genealogy study and quilt making.

Suzanne Lee, B.S. ‘76/N 

Suzanne Lee, B.S. ‘76/N, is a long-time member of the Friends of the Library and a devoted Rams fan. Retired from a forty-year career in bedside nursing, teaching and administration, Suzanne’s areas of expertise include neurology nursing, gerontology and behavioral health care. Suzanne was a clinical director of nursing, and taught courses in pharmacology, trauma informed patient care, and non-violent crisis intervention. She is a contributor to the Church Hill Association Newsletter, and serves as Vice President of the Church Hill Association.

Michael Portillo

Michael Portillo (BS '22/B) is a recent graduate of VCU and a current M.A. candidate at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). As an undergraduate, Michael was a member of the Cabell Library Undergraduate Advisory Committee (CLUAC) for three consecutive years. Outside of the library, Michael held multiple leadership positions in VCU organizations including The Student Economic Association and The Global Education Office. Professionally, Michael is part of the U.S. diplomatic corps and will join the Foreign Service with the Pickering Fellowship after completing his Master's degree.

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Larry Powell is Associate Director of Alumni Outreach and Engagement for VCU Alumni.  He holds the B.S. in Mass Communications and Public Relations (1985) from The Robertson School of Media and Culture. He joined the VCU Alumni staff in 1996. Today, he manages VCU Alumni's shared interest groups and select regional chapters, coordinates athletics-related alumni engagement, coordinates the African-American Alumni Council’s scholarship and mentoring programs and serves as VCU Alumni’s primary point of contact for diversity-related activities. An avid cyclist, Powell helps coordinate cycling events on behalf of the VCU Alumni Riding Rams. He is also a huge VCU Rams basketball fan, and you can see him at most home games.


Carol Stanfield holds a B.S. in Broadcast Journalism from the VCU School of Mass Communications (1992). After several years of toil in the control rooms of broadcast news outlets in Richmond, she shifted her focus to the nascent world of internet news. She traveled the country assisting broadcast news stations in their efforts to share news online as well as on-air. After a stint managing content and websites with The Council of Better Business Bureaus (now called IABBB), she has shifted focus and works as Director of Project Management for BBB National Programs, a developer of independent third-party programs to guide, aid, and address issues of business ethics, advertising, data privacy and dispute resolution.

Anaya Surve

Anaya Surve is a pre-med Bioinformatics major from the local Richmond area. She spends most of her free time reading, listening to music/podcasts, doing yoga, and volunteering. Organizations she is involved with are ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation, CirclesRVA, and Full Circle Grief Center. Anaya was the recipient of a Rising Scholars (formerly Monroe Scholars) award and scholarship. "The rigorous curriculum I take results in me spending many late nights in the library utilizing the many resources provided. I even picked my apartment so that I could live as close to the library as possible! I am incredibly excited to be a part of the board.“

Emeritus Members

  • Ms. Margaret Alexander
  • Ms. Kathleen B. Barrett
  • Dr. Thomas H. Beatty
  • Dr. Joann N. Bodurtha
  • Ms. Kate Peeples Brown
  • Mr. Nicholas T. Cooke, III
  • Dr. Mary Corley
  • Trevor S. Cox
  • M. Imad Damaj
  • Bonnie Newman Davis
  • Mr. David Dennier
  • Mr. Walter M. Dotts, III
  • Michelle Evans-Oliver
  • Mr. Ali M. Faruk
  • Dr. Carmen F. Foster
  • Dr. David Gardner
  • Katie B. Gooch
  • Ms. Carol L. Hampton
  • Mrs. Patricia (Kelly) Kyle
  • Dr. Tehra M. James
  • Dr. Allen S. Lee
  • Dr. John S. Mahoney, Jr.
  • Ms. Elva Mapp
  • Mr. Hatley N. Mason, III
  • Ms. Janice McMurray
  • Dr. Cynthia Messmer
  • Mr. Howard Minor, Jr
  • Mr. James T. Moore, III
  • Timmy Nguyen
  • Mrs. Cathie E. Peay
  • Dr. Barbara L. Peery
  • Marni Pilafian
  • Dr. Stephen T. Sawyer
  • Mr. John Jay Schwartz
  • Dr. Art Seidenberg
  • Julia Seward
  • Mrs. Sandy Sisisky
  • Ms. Melinda Skinner
  • Ms. June Stephenson
  • Ms. Nancy C. Thomas
  • Mr. Scott E. Tilley, Jr.
  • Dr. Rizpah L. Welch
  • Ms. Cricket G. White
  • Ms. Bonnie Winston
  • Rev. Dennis A. Andersen
  • Mr. Jad J. Babik