Meet the Trustee: Elizabeth Ross

Elizabeth Ross has lived in Topeka long enough to see the library remodeled and expanded twice (1976, 2002).  Serving as a trustee since 2007, this library customer has turned into a library insider, a fact many community members know all too well.

She’s always telling people that the library is the place to go – whether it’s for homework help, assistance setting up a business or to get a good book.

Elizabeth Ross, Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library TrusteeAs a young student, Ross remembers reading almost every book in her school library. The retired educator is a lifelong reader and learner and thought involvement on the board would be a good fit. But that’s not the only reason she decided to serve.

“In 2007, there wasn’t anyone of color on the board of trustees, so I wrote a letter to the mayor requesting my appointment to the board,” she said.

Ross has been involved in decisions including changes to library technology, implementation of fees, and the creation of a teen space. She knows more exciting developments are in store for library customers.

“One of the pluses for Topeka is this library, and I know its success has to come from its leaders. I think CEO Gina Millsap is on the cutting edge on everything good about libraries,” Ross said.

Ross also serves as a board member for the Living the Dream, Inc. organization which hosts events and awards honoring Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy. She nominated the library for Vivian Scales Education Award, which it won in 2009. She also volunteers for her church and for the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority’s graduate chapter.

A public relations professional, editor and writer, Lisa shares the library story in her blog posts, in the bimonthly Library News, and media interviews. A self-described social media and news nut, Lisa harnesses that passion to raise awareness and understanding of the library's vital role in this community.