New WKU Store Director will start in June

Bria Granville

After several months of searching, the WKU Store is finally getting a new director. 

After its previous store director left in February of 2014, the position was given to Tristy Hillestad, who served as interim director. Assistant Vice President of Auxiliary Services Gary Meszaros said the store hoped to keep Hillestad long term, but she decided to leave in September of the same year. 

Since then, Meszaros stepped in as the interim director. 

“It’s difficult in the fact that I’ve been in the Auxiliary Services area for over 30 years, but I never ran a bookstore until this year,” he said.

The search for a new director was ongoing until recently. 

“We went through several different candidates,” Meszaros said. “Some withdrew, and some turned it down.” 

As of June 1, however, Ann Floresca of Mission Viejo, California will be taking over as store director. 

“It’s a big move for me because I’m from southern California, but everybody was so welcoming,” Floresca said. “I’m not very familiar with the area, apart from the three days I spent there, so really I’m looking forward to the people and the position I’ll be working with.” 

Meszaros says that because of Floresca’s experience as a trainer for Follett, a privately owned book company, she will make a qualified director. 

“Her experience and professionalism will allow us to keep moving forward and growing the store,” Meszaros said. 

Follett provides educational services to schools K-12, districts and colleges. According to the Follett website, the company is higher education’s largest retailer, operating in more than 940 local campus stores and over 1,300 virtual stores across the continent. 

Meszaros said he hopes Floresca will bring the expertise she learned from working at a private company to working with the WKU bookstore.

“We’re looking forward to her getting her feet on the ground and her reaching out to the community, and we want people to get to know her and work with her,” he said. “She may have a different opinion, a different view of how to run this store. I’m looking forward to seeing what she comes up with.”