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Calvin knows the San Diego Public Library helped make him the person he is today. That impact was so meaningful he made the ultimate gesture by naming the San Diego Public Library Foundation as a beneficiary of his retirement plan and hopes to inspire others to support the Library Foundation.

When asked about his generous decision, Calvin said, “I wish to do this because I want to remember the San Diego Public Library as a place where as a child I spent many hours reading, using and borrowing books, particularly at the Valencia Park branch and at the old downtown main library.” With support from the Library Foundation, the Valencia Park Library can help meet the demands of their growing communities. Thanks to gifts like Calvin’s, the Foundation’s work can continue to support San Diego’s Public Libraries.

Calvin was born in San Francisco and moved to San Diego in 1955 when he was just 6 years old. He spent his formative childhood years growing up in Valencia Park and attended Valencia Park Elementary and then O’Farrell Junior High. His family then moved to Clairemont Mesa where he started high school at Madison High, class of ’67. “My family did not have the extra money to buy books for my sister and me,” Calvin said, “For us to have the Library nearby was absolute heaven.”

When Calvin first arrived in San Diego, he did not speak English. Calvin credits his wonderful teachers at Valencia Park and borrowing books to read from the little library in Valencia Park as what helped him assimilate and as the catalyst for a passion for lifelong learning. “In the age of the internet and the ability to quickly download information, I think the Library is a safe space for exploring ideas, exchanging information and learning about others, in addition to borrowing books.”

Calvin is now a retired architect and interior designer with a BA in Environmental Design from UC Berkeley and an MA in Architecture and Urban Planning from UCLA. Following stints at various architecture firms and a real estate development company, he started his own design firm in 1984 in San Francisco.

Calvin recognizes the profound difference the Library makes in people’s lives and his planned gift reflects that. Thank you, Calvin.