People Who Shaped the Valley Struck a Chord With Readers

The Valley 200, a daily feature highlighting famous or notorious people who have left their mark on the San Fernando Valley, attracted the biggest reader response in the history of the Times Valley Edition.

The series ends today with a reprinting of all the names. (B2)

More than 500 readers wrote, called or e-mailed about the series, which strove to demonstrate the wide variety of people who are part of the Valley’s history.

The feature began Feb. 20 under the guidance of Assistant City Editor Julie Green and was produced by 61 writers. It has been part of the edition’s commemoration of the bicentennial anniversary of the founding of the San Fernando Mission. Most subjects were selected by Times Valley Edition editors and writers; several were nominated by readers.


Among the Valley 200 were some of the area’s most famous residents: Bob Hope, Lucille Ball and William Mulholland. It featured educators--Yvonne Chan, who founded the Valley’s first charter school, and Gabriel Injejikian, founder of the first Armenian day school in the United States.

Authors Edgar Rice Burroughs and F. Scott Fitzgerald were among the portraits. Sports legends John Elway and John Wooden and studio founders Walt Disney and Mack Sennett were also included.

Eleanor Keaton recommended that her husband, Buster, be included, not so much for his comedic film career, but because he had served two terms as the honorary mayor of Woodland Hills.

Most readers seemed to like the variety, with a few exceptions. One chastised: “Charles Manson!?! Give me a break!!!!”

Generally, though, the Valley 200 seemed to strike a chord with Times readers, who nominated candidates on a daily basis.