On the Town: Local man with wide range of talents, knowledge debuts photo exhibit

Glendale resident Vahe Peroomian must certainly be considered a Renaissance man. He’s a longstanding member of the Glendale Community College board of trustees, a physics and astronomy professor at USC and now a photographer and exhibitor.

Peroomian’s love for photography was sparked by the gift of a Kodak toy camera when he was 10 years old.

For 20 years, he has developed his passion for photography into a third profession.

A photography exhibit titled “A Planet Worth Saving,” hosted by Peroomian and his wife, Carolyn, displayed the best of the photographer’s latest work.

On Nov. 10, several dozen Peroomian fans gathered at Stephanie’s Gallery in La Cañada Flintridge to sip, sup and savor landscapes from around the world taken at dawn, sunset and evening.

The exhibit marks Peroomian’s first showing in five years. This time, Peroomian has added color photographs to his repertoire.

He has also added starscapes, especially popular among the crowd. More favorites were his landscapes taken at U.S. national parks and photographs from a recent trip to Armenia.

Generously opening their wallets to support good friend Vahe and acquire a signed photograph or two were Glendale Community College Supt./President David Viar and wife, Jane.

State Sen. Anthony Portantino (D-La Cañada Flintridge) also bought an original Peroomian titled “The Waterfall at Ardvi” — part of his Armenia series.

But the best recognition of all came from Peroomian’s wife when she said, “I couldn’t be prouder of my love.”

The La Cañada Flintridge Orthopaedic Guild just celebrated 60 years of financial support for the Orthopaedic Institute for Children in Los Angeles.

A large part of the guild’s donations comes from its annual book and author luncheon held at the La Cañada Flintridge Country Club.

More than 200 members and their guests attended the Oct. 24 fundraiser luncheon.

Guild members from Glendale and La Crescenta were the movers and shakers at the event.

Glendale resident Marie Baker and Marie Gilhooley of La Crescenta headed up the silent auction. Glendale resident Arlene Massimino was event co-chair. She was gently supervised by Caryl Pettit, ways and means chairperson for the luncheon.

Marianne Jennings of Glendale was in charge of reservations, assisted by Glendale resident Marie Gilhooley and Louise Delaney from La Crescenta.

To start the morning, Marilyn Center’s “Bonus Board,” always popular, attracted first-arriving attendees. The gimmick was to buy surprise prizes in envelopes. Each prize was worth more than its published price.

La Crescenta resident Judy Zimmer plunked down $45, trusting that what was in the envelope was worth the money. Zimmer thought it was. She opened a $50 gift certificate from Bed, Bath & Beyond.

“I’m thrilled,” Zimmer said. “I’m doing my bathroom over.”

Shirley Myers, guild president, greeted her guests and described the marathon program to be held before lunch. First on the docket was Michael Sullivan, vice president and chief philanthropy officer for the Orthopaedic Institute for Children.

He introduced orthopaedic surgeon and keynote speaker Dr. Jennifer Beck, who is one of the few female orthopaedic surgeons specializing in pediatric sports medicine in California.

The audience then met a patient of Beck’s, 13-year old Elizabeth Ruiz from Mexico. For the guild’s generosity, she conveyed her gratitude in Spanish. A translator was at the ready.

Next up were three authors who spoke about their recent books that they were selling and signing. Jane Fattal and Joyce Gittlin write under the pen name J.J. Gesher. Their debut novel is “A Narrow Bridge.” Author James Stratton presented his nonfiction “Picture Business” and his latest book, also nonfiction, “100 Guilty Pleasure Movies”.

A chicken lunch with a vegetable option topped off an inspiration morning.

Proceeds from the benefit will be approximately $20,000. The funds are pledged to remodel the Orthopaedic Institute for Children urgent care center on the Los Angeles campus. The center treats about 30,000 children annually.

RUTH SOWBY RANDS may be reached at