2006-11-16 / Community

Community mourns loss of Pat Soteras

By John Loesing newstip@theacorn.com

GOODBYE FRIEND-Patricia Soteras, executive director of the Agoura/Oak Park/ Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, shown here  with Chamber President  Louis  Masry,  said  she  loved  the Chamber almost as much as her pet Chihuahua, Tico. GOODBYE FRIEND-Patricia Soteras, executive director of the Agoura/Oak Park/ Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, shown here with Chamber President Louis Masry, said she loved the Chamber almost as much as her pet Chihuahua, Tico. Patricia Soteras, executive director of the Agoura/Oak Park/ Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, died of a heart attack in her home Oct. 26. She was 75.

Soteras was born in Parkersburg, W.Va,. but moved to Hollywood at age 5 and became a child actress. As the young Patsy Lee Parsons, Soteras starred in almost a dozen movies, including "Yankee Doodle Dandy" with the great James Cagney. Soteras was married to Solon Soteras, a banker and community leader, and had three children, Alexander, Nickoletta and Anthony.

Alex Soteras is a former Chamber of Commerce president, and both he and his mother are credited with giving the once struggling organization new enthusiasm and direction.

"As our executive director, Pat played a major part in bringing our Chamber back from having little money in the bank and 150 members to our current status of approximately 1,200 members," said Louis Masry, Chamber president.

Pat Soteras as 'Patsy Parsons' Pat Soteras as 'Patsy Parsons' Soteras donated her time and helped nurture Chamber membership from Thousand Oaks to Calabasas.

"She was very dedicated to the small business owners in the Chamber," said Jess Ruf, owner of Do-it Center. "She'll be sorely missed by all of us."

Soteras said she loved the Chamber almost as much as Tico, her pet Chihuahua whom she often was seen carrying around town.

Pat Soteras raised her family at Trancas Beach in Malibu. She wrote a column for the Malibu Times titled "Wild Wild West Malibu" and worked at Pepperdine University for 10 years in the school's finance department.

She said her children were always her No. 1 priority.

Soteras also was an active member of the Conejo Optimist Club and the Westlake and Conejo Valley Republican women's clubs.

In lieu of flowers, the Chamber has established a scholarship that will benefit students who want to go to college and study business and public relations. Contributions may be mailed to the Patricia Soteras Scholarship Fund, 30101 Agoura Court, No. 207, Agoura Hills, CA 91301.

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