Board of Directors
All members of the Board have lived on the Peninsula or environs for many years and have deep professional and volunteer associations in the community.
Helen Dennis, Director
Helen Dennis is a nationally recognized leader on issues of aging, employment and retirement. She has been the recipient of numerous awards for her teaching at the Davis School at USC’s Andrus Gerontology Center and for her contributions to the field of aging, the community and literary arts. As editor and author and columnist, she is a frequent speaker and weekly columnist on Successful Aging for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group reaching 1.3 million readers and has assisted over 10,000 employees to prepare for the non-financial aspects of their retirement.In her volunteer life, Helen has served as president of five nonprofit organizations and continues to serve on several boards. Fully engaged in the field of aging, she was a delegate to the 2005 White House Conference on Aging and has extensive experience with the media.
Sherry May, Ph.D., Director
Sherry May is a long time resident in Palos Verdes and has deep professional and volunteer ties to southern California. Dr. May chaired the Palos Verdes Peninsula branch of the American Association of University Women in 2012-2014 and, among other awards, received the Helen Thomas Award from the YWCA of Greater Los Angeles for her volunteer work. May taught in the Religious Studies Department at California State University Northridge for many years before going to USC. At USC she had responsibilities for alumni relations, was Dean of the College of Continuing Education and Vice Provost, Continuing Studies. After retiring she consulted with non-profit and educational institutions in areas of policy development and project implementation. Clients included California State University Northridge/Partnerships Empowering Youth To Serve, University of Southern California's Center for Religion and Civic Culture, YWCA of Greater Los Angeles, Adolescent Pregnancy Child-Watch, Girls Inc, First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, and The Children's Defense Fund.
Britt Vanden Eykel-Huff, Ph.D., Director
Britt Huff is the Executive Director of H.E.L.P. (Healthcare and Elder Law Programs Corporation) and a member of the City Council of Rolling Hills Estates on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. She is active in the South Bay community, including local government and schools, as well as other non-profit organizations. Her service includes the L.A. BioMed Foundation Board, the Peninsula Education Foundation Board, the Peninsula Chapter of National Charity League, and the South Bay Estate Planning Council. She also served as President of the Palos Verdes Peninsula Council of PTA’s. She is a member of the Torrance and Palos Verdes Chambers of Commerce, and served on the Planning Commission of the City of Rolling Hills Estates for five years; and as Chair in 2012. She also has many years of government management experience in Washington, D.C., Boston, and Los Angeles, as well as small business marketing, public relations and nonprofit management and consulting.
Ann Shaw, Chief Financial Officer
Ann Shaw has served in a wide-ranging assortment of professional and volunteer positions.She has served as president of Peninsula Seniors since 2009 and has been a board member since 1999. She was a member of the Rancho Palos Verdes city council from 1977 to 1983 and served as mayor from 1979-1980. Prior to that, she was a member of the Save Our Coastline organization from 1968-1973. Prior to her entry into politics, she worked in cryptanalysis and computer programming for the National Security Agency, in banking and financial planning (she is a certified financial planner). She is active in the League of Women Voters, the American Association of University Women, and serves as an AARP TaxAide Coordinator.
Susan Hamilton-Wallace, Director
Susan Hamilton-Wallace, a long-time Palos Verdes resident, has served in a wide variety of leadership and volunteer roles in the community. In addition to serving as an administrator of the Peninsula Dial-A-Ride she also has worked with the Liaison Citizens Training Program in Los Angeles and as a community trainer for the Coro Foundation in Los Angeles. She has helped in the development of docent programs at Banning Museum in Wilmington and Cabrillo Marine Museum in San Pedro. She also was administrator of the Program in Business Ethics at the University of Southern California. She is a member of the Los Angeles Junior League, the American Association of University Women, the Palos Verdes Art Center and the National Charity League. Additionally, she is a licensed Real Estate Independent Contractor.
Fran Wielin, Chair
Fran Wielin has lived in Rolling Hills Estates with her husband Sid since 1972. She was born in Southern California and has lived here all of her life, including attending Occidental College. She retired as a hospital Medical Technologist, became a volunteer with the Friends of the Library, and served nine years as a Trustee of the Palos Verdes Library District. She has volunteered with the Palos Verdes Land Conservancy and as President and Newsletter Editor of PVP American Association of University Women. She is President and Calendar Editor for the Palos Verdes Peninsula Coordinating Council.
Steve Jordan, Director
Call me Steve. I am, simply put, a Midwesterner living in Southern California. Born and raised in Galesburg, Illinois, I received my Bachelor’s degree (class of ’69) and my Medical degree (class of ’73) from the University of Iowa. I then spent one year in Minneapolis, Minnesota, completing my medical internship and meeting my future wife Margi. We returned to Iowa City for three years where I completed my residency in obstetrics and gynecology and we got married.
Margi and I have lived in Palos Verdes ever since arriving here in 1977. She worked in data processing. I practiced at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Harbor City. We both retired early and since then I have kept busy volunteering-Habitat for Humanity, South Coast Botanic Garden, Seed to Plate program at the Valmonte Elementary School working with special needs young adults and Kaiser Permanente’s hospice program. And now with The Village.
Lynn Solomita, Secretary
Lynn’s career has been in Human Resources for over 40 years. She spent almost 20 years working for the United States Air Force and NASA before dedicating herself to the field of education, working for more than 20 years at several community colleges, primarily El Camino College in Torrance and Santa Monica College. She continues to work as a consultant at various colleges in Southern California.
She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UCLA and a J.D, from the University of West Los Angeles where she was selected for Law Review. She passed the Bar Exam in 1987 but elected to stay in the community college system.
Lynn has been active in community volunteer activities including serving as chair and member of the Torrance Civil Service Commission and Secretary to the Behavioral Health Services Board of Directors. She has also been a reading volunteer/mentor at local elementary schools; a docent at the Point Vicente Interpretive Center; Neighborhood Watch Block Captain; and current President of Las Vecinas, a philanthropic club serving the South Bay. Lynn is also a longtime supporter of “Trap. Neuter, Release and Adopt” programs for feral cats, primarily in the Malaga Cove area.
She lives in Palos Verdes Estates with husband, Phil, two dogs and five cats. Her daughter, a teacher, son-in-law, a fire engineer with LA County, and her two granddaughters live in Rolling Hills Estates giving her ample time to play grandma which has become her favorite activity.
Teresa Chi-Ching Sun, Ed.D., Director
Teresa Sun is well known on the Peninsula for her volunteer work as well as her career as an educator. In addition to her service as a Palos Verdes Library District Trustee and a board member of RHE Norris Center of Performing Arts she has recently served as President of Help the Homeless Help Themselves and Past President of the China Society of Southern California. Her work with Palos Verdes Peninsula Multi-Cultural Committee has had a continuing impact on the community. In 2014 Teresa was recognized for her many contributions with the Volunteer Center as a Legend of the Year.
Dr. Sun has lectured widely on Chinese language, literature and culture at Whittier College, UC Irvine. Cal State LA and CSULB. She continues teaching after retirement in Chinese Cultural History and Arts at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at CSULB.
Carolynn Petru, Director
Carolynn Petru has lived and worked on the Palos Verdes Peninsula nearly continuously since 1966. A graduate of Palos Verdes High School, she has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Planning from UC Davis and a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from UCLA. She recently retired from the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, where she spent 29 years serving the community. For most of her career, she was the Deputy City Manager, working on special projects for the City Council and supervising several functional areas at City Hall including public safety, emergency preparedness, community outreach, human resources and information/technology. Other positions she held at one time or another included Director of Planning, City Clerk, Director of Recreation & Parks, and just prior to her retirement, Acting City Manager. She lives in Rancho Palos Verdes with her husband and best friend since high school, Andy Petru.
Colleen Cotter, Executive Director
Colleen Cotter has enjoyed living on the Peninsula for 21 years. She studied at Cal Poly, Pomona receiving her Business degree. She has management experience of working in the surgical equipment industry for 10 years as well as 7 years in the non-profit arena. Her career is coupled with strong volunteer experience including the PV Jrs., PTA, St. John Fisher, Peninsula Committee Children’s Hospital and Little Sisters of the Poor. Committed to working in the non-profit world. Colleen is studying at UCLA for her Nonprofit Management Certificate. She is excited to put her skills and her deep commitment to the community to good use with Peninsula Village helping members stay independent, safe and happy. She is married to Michael Cotter and has two children; Tim is a sophomore at Chapman University and Claire is a senior at Peninsula High School.