About Us

As part of a study to determine effective means of “continuing education”, the Ford Foundation Fund for Education in 1955 established, in Pasadena and nine other areas, centers for adult continuing education through discussion-study using lay leaders instead of professional teachers.  These centers were funded for three years and then left to their own resources.  Of the original ten, only the Pasadena Center is still operating independently.  The others were disbanded or absorbed into local universities.  So successful was the experiment that when the Fund terminated its support in 1959, the Pasadena Area Liberal Arts Center (PALAC) continued as a non-profit educational corporation 501(c)(3).  Circumstances were such that in 1971 the paid director position was eliminated and the organization continued with an all volunteer staff.

Since that time PALAC has operated on a small budget, maintained only by participant fees, memberships and donations.

PALAC is governed by a Board of Trustees.

President Coralie Whitcomb
Vice President Jane Crane
Secretary Sue Hogan
Treasurer Bob Diller

Board of Trustees:
Fran Blackwell, Bonnie Brown, Jane Crane, Bob Diller,  Sue Hogan, Donna Jaffee, Carolyn Karpin, Sue Komarek, Marylouise Lau, James Liu, Reiko Sakata, Charles Schufreider, Nancy Shannon, Coralie Whitcomb, and David Whitcomb.

Committee Chairs:
Annual Meeting – Carolyn Karpin
Governance – Bonnie Brown
Leadership – Jane Crane and David Whitcomb
Leadership Dinner – Donna Jaffee
Membership and Diversity – Donna Jaffee
Nominating – Fran Blackwell
Office Volunteers – Linda Huetinck
Programs – Audrey Vaughan
Retreat – David Whitcomb
Safaris – Marylouise Lau
Social – Nancy Shannon
Social Secretary – Carolyn Karpin
Technology – James Liu
Website – Bob Diller