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February 2018 Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Columbia • Core/Civic • Cortez Hill • East Village • Gaslamp/Horton Plaza • Little Italy • Marina







Logo Design






see Petco Solar, pg 8

see City Hall changes, pg 18

In a pose reminiscent of Charles Ebbets’ famous 1932 photo of construction workers seated on a beam high above New York City, a portion of Sullivan Solar Power’s install team takes a break atop Petco Park. (Courtesy Sullivan Solar Power)

Petco Park installs massive solar power project, besting the MLB USA Today may rate the San Diego Padres’ Petco Park as the “best park in baseball” and its state-of-the-art HD video board may be the largest screen in the National League, but now the 14-year-old baseball park can boast something even more altruistic; it is in


Ice cream that is out of this world

the process of installing the largest solar panel system in Major League Baseball (MLB). In fact, once complete, the 336,520-watt solar power system fastened to its upper deck roof and canopy will be larger than all the MLB’s seven other solar projects, combined.

By Scott Lewis

Installed by Miramarbased company Sullivan Solar Power, Padres management state the project will save the organization more than $4,117,000 in utility bills over the next 25 years. It also falls nicely in line with San Diego Mayor Kevin


Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

Chadwick out, Michell in as City Hall COO The city of San Diego’s Chief Operating Officer Scott Chadwick is leaving for the COO job with the city of Carlsbad and a chance to eventually be a city manager. San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer immediately tapped Kris Michell to be the city’s COO. In October, Faulconer had recruited Michell to be deputy COO for special projects. Michell has been an influential player in City Hall politics before, but her appointment as COO marks a major change for the role, which has generally gone to technocrats rather than political operators. Carlsbad posted the news about Chadwick on its website on Jan. 21 “Not only does he bring a wealth of experience, he is committed to investing in city

Film profiles first socialist

Anything to pay the rent

Mardi Gras 2018 Page 3

Bike-share program rolls into a new era Credit card company sponsors DecoBike, plans expansion


By Dave Fidlin

A different kind of protest

Index Opinion








Contact us Editorial/Letters 619-961-1960



San Diego Community News Network

A logo long associated with a credit card giant will begin appearing on bikes placed in San Diego’s multiple rental docks starting in February. But executives within DecoBike, operator of the city’s bike-share program, and Discover, the new title sponsor, said the arrangement and reworking of the program’s formal name to Discover Bike is more than just a simple cosmetic change. In the months ahead, the two entities have promised a number of added features, including a new mobile app and software updates with promises of improved bike and equipment tracking capabilities. Neither DecoBike nor Discover has divulged what the increased investment will cost.

The city of San Diego has an exclusive bike-sharing agreement in place with DecoBike that stretches into 2023, so while its name is disappearing from the rented bikes, DecoBike remains at the helm of day-to-day operations. In a sign of the corporate tie-in, Discover cardmembers also will be privy to a 20 pecent reduction in bike rental and membership costs if the namesake credit card is used to pay for the purchase. Though specific plans have yet to be announced, the new partnership, which was revealed Jan. 29, also comes with pledges of increasing the bike fleet 20 percent from the current layout, which was first introduced three years ago when the

see DecoBike, pg 5

Credit card company Discover is now serving as title sponsor of the DecoBike sharing program in San Diego. (Courtesy Discover)


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

San Diego krewes take a break


Locals can still celebrate Mardi Gras with a day and night alternative Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

For the last 24 years, San Diego has had one of — if not the — largest annual Mardi Gras celebrations outside of New Orleans, drawing nearly 10,000 people to the streets of the Gaslamp Quarter for a massive block party and parade on the Saturday prior to Fat Tuesday every February. This year, however, Gaslamp residents and business owners will be taking a breather, while the producer, McFarlane Promotions, Inc., puts the largescale event on a one-year hiatus. Laurel McFarlane — whose company, along with Tickled Pink Productions, has been the event’s co-producer since 2014 — said that the break will pay off significantly. “We have recently formed collaborations with some experienced groups that we feel are going to bring a great new energy to the event and make the parade and festival components really spectacular,” said McFarlane, who also acted as event coordinator during the two decades the Gaslamp Quarter Association produced Mardi Gras between 1994-2014. “To cultivate those partnerships and have time to make this event everything it should be, we felt we needed a full year to plan,” she said. “We look forward to bringing something really special back to the Gaslamp Quarter in 2019.” This is good news to Downtown, since other neighborhoods, citing growing costs, are looking instead to scale down their Mardi Gras events this year, including nearby Hillcrest, which is having a nighttime “Bus Stop Party Hop” event in lieu of their normal block party.Despite the short hiatus, there will still be much to do

I LIST HOMES FOR 1% DON`T OVERPAY TO SELL YOUR HOME! Go to my website While entertainers from last year’s San Diego Mardi Gras celebration will be taking a break this year, attendees will still have the opportunity to enjoy a carnival of a good time. (Photos courtesy McFarlane Promotions, Inc.) and celebrate in the Gaslamp Quarter this month when “Mardi Gras Beads, Bites and Booze Tour” — an alternative event, which originally had its debut in 2017 — takes place Saturday, Feb. 10, from 1–5 p.m. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 the day of event, and include up to 20 New Orleansinspired bites and 20 carnival-style booze sips from participating businesses throughout the reaches of the Gaslamp Quarter and beyond. The Field, Analog, Tin Roof, Ciro’s Pizza, El Chingon, Havana 1920, Altitude Sky Lounge, Coyote Ugly and Spike’s Seafood Grill are just a few of the restaurants that are on the tour. With 2,500 expected to attend, it is certain to be an eventful but more low-key way of honoring Fat Tuesday. An after party, dubbed Carnival of Colors and co-produced by the local “krewe" Brazilian Productions, starts at 4 p.m. and will allow revelers to continue their evening with a Carnivalstyle theme party that will feature music, dancing and entertainment. “The Carnival of Colors After Party has no end time, so attendees can keep the party going as long as they like,” McFarlane said. McFarlane also said that the inaugural

Beads, Bites and Booze Tour event was a “huge success,” and she shared with San Diego Downtown News that one attendee from last year recently gushed on her Facebook page, calling the event the “best money [she] ever spent on a ticket,” and “a must” attend. Costumes are encouraged and those who make their way through the self-guided tour will collect Mardi Gras-style beads at every stop from each of the participating venues. Those who collect a minimum of 10 sets of beads will be given a special white bead necklace, which will grant them entrance to the after party. The cost of the tour — which includes the after party for the tenacious — is half the price of a general admission ticket to the block parties of years’ past, and by participating you will also help local merchants. “Attendees [of the Beads, Bites and Booze Tour] can still enjoy the Gaslamp Quarter at night by staying for the after party or visiting another establishment, but we felt that by holding the event in the day we were supporting the local merchants and providing additional business for them,” McFarlane said. To learn more about participating restaurants and purchase tickets, visit bit. ly/2BnW6aV.


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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

The resistance, then and now Local filmmaker’s film about America’s first socialist debuts in Jewish Film Festival By Ken Williams

Long before Sen. Bernie Sanders, a democratic socialist from Vermont, electrified millions of voters during the 2016 Democratic presidential primaries, labor-union leader and reformer Eugene Victor Debs was the pioneer of liberal populism who railed against income inequality because a small number owned the bulk of the wealth in the United States. Debs ran for president in five elections, between 1900 and 1920, as the candidate of the Socialist Party of America.

“American Socialist: The Life and Times of Eugene Victor Debs,” a documentary by Mission Hills resident Yale Strom, will be shown Feb. 11 and Feb. 13 at the 28th annual San Diego Jewish Film Festival. Oscar-nominated actress Amy Madigan narrates the documentary, which Strom produced and directed. Strom’s wife, Elizabeth Schwartz, is the executive producer and his co-writer. Editor and co-producer is Luke Jungers, who was born in La Mesa and lives in the San Diego area.

‘American Socialist: The Life and Times of Eugene Victor Debs’ 28th annual San Diego Jewish Film Festival Feb. 13 at 5 p.m. Edwards Mira Mesa Stadium 18 10733 Westview Parkway 858-635-7716

Feb. 11 at 11 a.m. Edwards San Marcos Stadium 18 1180 W. San Marcos Blvd. 844-462-7342

Strom could easily be the subject of his own docudrama. The artist in residence in the Department of Jewish Studies at San Diego State University is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker for “The Last Klezmer” and “L’Chayim, Comrade Stalin!” He is considered one of the world’s leading ethnographer-artists of klezmer and Romani music and history. Strom has made 15 recordings with his ensemble, Yale Strom & Hot Pstromi, known for traditional klezmer and “new” Jewish jazz. Author of 12 books, Strom has also composed for film, television, theater, radio and symphony orchestras. Here are five questions with Strom, regarding his documentary on Debs: (Downtown News | DTN) What inspired you to do a documentary on Debs, and how challenging was it collecting all the historical photos and documents? (Yale Strom | YS) When then-Sen. Barack Obama was running for the presidency in 2007, many people who came to

Mission Hills resident Yale Strom and his wife, Elizabeth (Courtesy Yale Strom) his political campaign rallies who opposed him would hold up signs saying, “You socialist, go back to Russia,” etc., and I said to my wife: “Obama’s political policies are not even close to socialism.” So I decided to delve into the history of the man who co-founded the Socialist Party of America and also rehabilitate the word “socialist” so it is not considered an epithet (and an empty dog-whistle epithet at that). Finding all the archival photos took a lot of sleuthing, patience and luck. Some I found online, but the photos that have rarely if ever been seen by the

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1/3/18 3:46 PM

public came from various libraries of all sizes, from small towns like Girard, Kansas, to the Walter Reuther archives at Wayne State University in Detroit. (DTN) What parallels do you see between today’s political and economic landscapes and those that existed during the time when Debs was trying to foster change in America? (YS) It was because of these parallels that I felt it was finally time to make this film. When Debs was energizing the working-class people of America, 1896-1926, the United States was in the midst of massive industrial output from cars, to steel and construction materials. More Americans were working, but their salaries were not keeping up with the daily cost of living and they were not sharing in this economic boom. America had a new tier, a group small in numbers but powerful in its control of wealth. In 1912, 2 percent of the nation’s population owned 60 percent of the nation’s wealth. When [financier and banker] J. Pierpont Morgan Sr. was asked if corporate directors were at all responsible for the workers at his companies, he replied “Not at all, I should say.” We have the same income disparity today with the top 1 percent of households owning more wealth than the bottom 90 percent combined. Yes, there are more workers employed today, but more and more are barely — if at all — making a living wage. Debs was then convinced that the “trickle down” economic theory did not work. And since then, it still hasn’t worked. (DTN) One of the challenges facing Debs, the political candidate, was being able to separate American democratic socialism from the communist brand fostered by Karl Marx, and yet he was able to win over legions of voters in conservative places like Oklahoma and Texas. Do you see a revival of democratic socialism in American politics, especially among millennials? (YS) I do see a revival today among millennials. For them the word “socialism” isn’t some dirty word. The root of the word “socialism” is “social” — it comes from the Latin “socius” “comrade, friend, ally” (adjectival form: socialis) and is used to describe a bond or interaction between parties that are friendly, or at least civil; it has given rise to the word “society.” Our present economic system of unbridled capitalism, where

see Film Festival, pg 9


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


DECOBIKE city signed its initial pact with DecoBike. Vijay Konduru, vice president of media and sponsorships at Discover, said San Diego is the first — and, for the foreseeable future, only — city where the company is sponsoring a bike-share program. “Right now, we’re focused on this and look forward to engaging with San Diego residents and visitors,” Konduru said. When asked why Discover wanted to venture into this new category, Konduru said company officials view it as a natural extension of the company’s brand. “The Discover Bike program will help support local transportation, sustainability and recreation initiatives,” Konduru said. “We’re excited to engage the San Diego market in a new way.” The name change and added technological features are already taking form and Discover and DecoBike representatives said the stations will bring 200 new bikes and 20 additional docking stations. A news release announcing the changes described the additions as being targeted “in key locations in the city’s urban core.” “The specific location of bike station expansions will be determined by DecoBike, in coordination with the city,” Konduru said, adding that the Downtown area and areas along the waterfront are planned. David Silverman, vice president of operations with DecoBike San Diego, said the review process for the additional bikes is already underway. “The new sites are pending approval from the city and Port Authority,” Silverman said. “We have submitted locations … and are currently awaiting approval.” Konduru and Silverman said the timeline for the rollout of the added docking sites has intentionally remained fluid and is expected to take place in multiple phases throughout the year as 2018 progresses. “The new branding on bikes, stations and other equipment will roll out over the next few weeks,” Konduru said. Mayor Kevin Faulconer is among the city leaders to go on record in support of the increased investments into DecoBike’s sharing program. Faulconer specifically singled out environmental practices as a reason he is lauding the new partnership between DecoBike and Discover. “The actions we take today will make a difference tomorrow,” Faulconer said in a statement when the new sponsorship was announced. “Increasing commuter bicycling opportunities is an important goal of our Climate Action Plan. The concentration of bike-share locations in the urban core will play an important part in the Downtown Mobility Plan, which will enhance bicycle safety and increase ridership.” For more details, visit —Reach Dave Fidlin at

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

123 Camino De La Reina Ste. 202 East San Diego, CA 92108 (619) 519-7775 Twitter: @sddowntownnews Instagram: @sd_downtownnews

EDITOR Morgan M. Hurley (619) 961-1960



(619) 961-1958


Sara Butler, x118 Jeff Clemetson, x119 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Sen. Toni G. Atkins Diana Cavagnaro Tom Cesarini Andy Cohen Dave Fidlin Christopher Gomez Lana Harrison

Guest Editorial


Team Internet is far from done What’s next for net neutrality and how you can help By Corynne McSherry and Elliot Harmon Defying the facts, the law, and the will of millions of Americans, the Federal Communications Commission has voted to repeal net neutrality protections. It’s difficult to understate how radical the FCC’s decision was. The internet has operated under formal and informal net neutrality principles for years. For the first time, the FCC has not only abdicated its role in enforcing those principles, it has rejected them altogether. Here’s the good news: The fight is far from over and Team Internet has plenty of paths forward.

Defending net neutrality in Congress

It’s not too late to stop the FCC’s rule change from going into effect. Poll after poll show that Americans overwhelmingly support net neutrality and Congress has already been inundated with calls for them to take action. We need to keep up the pressure, and we will. Under the Congressional Review Act (CRA), Congress

can reverse a change in a federal regulation by a simple majority vote within 60 working days after that regulation is published in the official record. In other words, Congress can vote to overturn FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s rule change and bring back the Open Internet Order. There are already members of Congress promoting compromised net neutrality bills that won’t give us all of the protections we need. Congress has a cleaner, faster path to real net neutrality: simply restore the 2015 Open Internet Order. Technically, Congress can’t invoke the CRA until the final rule change is published in the Federal Register, which will take several weeks. Between now and then, we will be watching Congress closely to see which members make public commitments to use the CRA to restore the order.

Defending net neutrality in court

While the CRA process moves forward, the FCC will be facing multiple legal challenges. Public interest groups, state

attorneys general, and members of Congress are already getting ready to go to court. The FCC is required to listen to the public in its rulemaking processes and show clear evidence for its decisions. The commission did neither in its decision to roll back the Open Internet Order. Among other things, it ignored the technical evidence EFF and others submitted showing why the 2015 order made sense given 21st-century internet realities, in favor of self-serving claims from the ISPs and organizations they support. It relied equally heavily on the absurd notion that a few large tech companies, combined with the theoretical possibility that incumbent ISPs might someday face competition, eliminated the need for regulation. And that’s just the beginning. The new order is full of holes, and judges will be able to see them.

Defending net neutrality in the states

Lawmakers and executive branch leaders in multiple states are working to fill the gap the FCC is creating and protect their constituents from unfair ISP

see Internet, pg 9

Un-neighborly things left behind

I am a Downtown resident and enjoy my many daily walks in our beautiful city. Today I came upon a young man with his golden retriever (we had a golden retriever for 16 years). He stepped out of his residence on J and Fourth streets and his dog urinated on the sidewalk. I understand that living Downtown it might be difficult for dogs to “hold it” until they get to an appropriate potty spot. I suggested that when this happens the owner might want to have a small bottle of water handy to clean up after his dog. He was very sure that he does not need to do anything like that, even if it is in a walking path. He said he carries poop bags and that now that I have the appropriate information from him, that I should have a good day. I don't believe there are any laws in place for this but I have seen this before and hope that everyone with a dog would consider helping to keep our sidewalks free of dog urine or at least clean up after your dog, whether it is urine or dog poop. I felt it was a bit inappropriate for him to turn his back on the puddle he left behind for people to walk thru. Not angry, just felt it was inconsiderate. What are your thoughts? —Barb, via email

Successes all around

[Ref: “Downtown Partnership News: New Year, new challenges, we’re ready,” Vol. 19, Issue 1, or online at] Great to hear not only the success of the several homeless projects at work that have helped Wilson and her son, but that the hep A epidemic being reduced. —Gail Harrison, via

Positive vibes in East Village

[Ref: “Art alive in the East Village,” Vol. 19, Issue 1, or online at] This effort is very positive. Thank you, San Diego needs this. —S Liston, via —Letters to the editor are encouraged. We pull them from email, Facebook, and comments left on articles on our website. If you’d wish to send a letter to the editor, email

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OPINIONS/LETTERS: San Diego Downtown News encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email either to and include your phone number and address for verification. We reserve the right to edit letters for brevity and accuracy. Letters and guest editorials do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or staff. SUBMISSIONS/NEWS TIPS: Press releases and story ideas are welcomed. Send press releases, tips, photos or story ideas to For breaking news and investigative story ideas contact the editor by phone or email. DISTRIBUTION: San Diego Downtown News is distributed free on the first Friday of every month. Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.


Falsehoods and fears Congressional Watch Andy Cohen The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has a bone to pick with Scott Peters (D-52). In a recent TV ad that has aired widely in San Diego, the group claims that Peters is out to end a program called the 340B drug pricing program. That claim, to say the least, is a lie. The 340B drug pricing program was put in place in 1992; it was expanded in 2003 and again in 2010. It is intended to provide participating hospitals and clinics with access to discounted drugs from pharmaceutical companies — 20–50 percent discounts in most cases — to help them better serve low-income communities. Those savings are supposed to be put toward expanding access to medical care. The problem is that there are no regulations in place to ensure providers are using the program as intended, and some are instead using it to pad their profit margins by using those discounts for patients with adequate health insurance, then fi ling for reimbursement for the full, non-discounted price from insurance companies. Hyperbole is a common tactic when it comes to political campaigns, but when it rises to the level of outright falsehoods to deliberately mislead voters and smear a candidate, let alone a sitting member of Congress, it becomes problematic. The AHF’s ad rises to such a level. Last year, the Trump administration announced that it was cutting $1.6 billion from the 340B program, putting a major strain on the budgets of many health care providers that serve rural and/or low-income communities. In December, Peters helped to introduce a bipartisan (three Republican co-sponsors and Peters) bill that would place a two-year moratorium on accepting new providers from joining the program until further safeguards were put in place to ensure that program funds were being used as intended. The bill would not affect providers currently enrolled in the program, and would seek to preserve the current level of funding. In short, the bill co-sponsored by Peters does not end the 340B program. Rather,

it seeks to ensure the program’s funds are being used to provide medications to low-income patients instead of padding hospital profit margins, contrary to the AHF’s assertions. “The 340B program is critical to provide low-income patients with access to the life-saving treatments they need,” Peters said in a press statement disputing the ad’s claims. “The cuts made by the Trump administration to the 340B program need to be reversed. Going forward, we also must find ways to make sure the program is viable longterm; part of that is ensuring that hospitals who participate in the program are getting these critical, discounted drugs to the people for whom they are intended. “Congress needs to ensure the funds are properly allocated, that there is no abuse and the program is being used as intended,” Peters added. “A temporary pause on 340B will not affect hospitals already in the program and will allow for greater data transparency, appropriate oversight and better care for patients.” It turns out that AHF — and its founder, Michael Weinstein — derives most of its funding from clinics and pharmacies it operates that depend largely on Medicare and Medicaid insurance payments. These are the types of providers that participate in 340B. Opposing a member of Congress is one thing. But lying about that member’s stated positions in an effort to undermine their standing is quite another, and is something we should never tolerate. The San Diego area political landscape will experience a significant shakeup come November of 2018. For several months now, there has been massive speculation about the future of Darrell Issa (R-49), the nine-term Republican Congress member who represents northern San Diego County and southern Orange County. Issa has been a stalwart of Republican partisan politics, making a national name for himself as former chair of the powerful House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, launching a number of investigations into the Obama administration that cost taxpayers tens of millions of dollars but ultimately proved fruitless. During his chairmanship, Issa became the poster

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

boy for Republican partisan excesses. Speculation as to whether he would survive the 2018 election cycle after winning re-election in 2016 by a mere 1,621 votes, while facing daily protests outside of his Vista office, became unavoidable. Prior to 2016, Issa had never faced a serious threat to his electoral prospects. That all changed, however, in the “Age of Trump,” with President Trump’s unpopularity potentially dragging down the entire Republican Party, threatening the GOP’s stranglehold on power in Washington, D.C. His expectations for victory in November seemed dimmer than ever. On Jan. 10, Issa announced he would not run for a 10th term. “Throughout my service, I worked hard and never lost sight of the people our government is supposed to serve,” Issa announced in a statement. “Yet with the support of my family, I have decided that I will not seek re-election in California’s 49th District.” A crowded field has formed to replace Issa. Already on the Democratic side, former Marine Col. and JAG attorney Doug Applegate (who nearly beat Issa in 2016); environmental lawyer Mike Levin; real estate investor Paul Kerr; and nonprofit CEO (and granddaughter of Qualcomm co-founder Irwin Jacobs) Sara Jacobs; are all jockeying for position. Now the Republican field is growing, as well, with California Assemblyman from Oceanside Rocky Chavez immediately jumping into the race; followed by California Board of Equalization member Diane Harkey; San Juan Capistrano City Councilmember Brian Maryott; patent lawyer Joshua Schoonover; and recently, San Diego County Supervisor Kristin Gaspar. The fear on both sides is that with California’s top-two primary system, the high number of candidates will dilute the vote to the point where one party will be shut out of the general election. For Democrats, this is a real concern, since Issa’s seat has been seen as a real pick-up opportunity in the quest to retake the majority in the House. For political junkies, this race will be one of the few of real intrigue this cycle — certainly the highest profile — for San Diego. Stay tuned. —Andy Cohen is a local freelance writer. Reach him at




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Positive reflections on the governor’s proposed budget Notes from Toni Toni G. Atkins California’s economy continues to be strong, and that’s reflected in the 2018-19 state budget that Governor Jerry Brown proposed on Jan. 10. The governor’s finance team estimates that the budget will benefit from a surplus of $6.1 billion this year. However, I know all too well how quickly a surplus can turn into a deficit, so we must proceed carefully. The day before the governor proposed his budget, my colleagues in the Senate’s Democratic Caucus officially selected me to be the next Senate president pro tempore. I am scheduled to be sworn into office on March 21, meaning I’ll be in position to represent the Senate in budget negotiations later in the spring before the budget is finalized in June. For now, the governor is proposing a $131.7 billion general fund budget for the fiscal year that begins on July 1. From his perspective, the top highlight is the ability to add $5 billion to the “rainy day fund” that voters created in 2014, bringing that fund to $13.5 billion and our total reserves to $15.8 billion. Adding significantly to the rainy-day fund to help protect vital state programs in the event of another economic downturn is the right course. And there’s a lot to like about the proposed budget in addition to the large amount of money we can save for later. Here are a few highlights: ● Nearly $4 billion more would be sent to our K-12 public schools to invest in our children’s education, bringing the total to $78.3 billion. Last year’s increase was $3.1 billion. ● The budget includes more than $277 million for special education, including $167 million to expand access to preschool for children with special needs and $100 million to recruit special-education teachers. ● Community colleges would receive $570 million more, including $120 million for online education — for members of our workforce seeking to improve their prospects with additional education.

● The budget extends for five years our California Competes Tax Credit program, which has awarded $622 million in credits to 865 companies to create 83,000 jobs, including nearly 150 San Diego County businesses. The program would be able to award $180 million in credits each year, and San Diego always does well. ● We saw again this year how devastating wildfire can be. Our ability to protect people and homes would benefit from an additional $760 million. ● Our court system would receive an increase of $150 million, which it badly needs, and $131 million would be spent improving conditions in our correctional facilities. ● The budget includes $4.6 billion for transportation infrastructure from passage of SB 1. Combined with $2.8 billion in the current budget, that’s $7.4 billion for local roads, highways and transit by June 2019. Already, more than $243 million in repair work has been approved for San Diego County alone. ● If voters pass a $4 billion parks-and-water bond in June and a $4 billion affordable-housing bond in November, we’ll have $1 billion for parks and water, and $280 million for affordable housing to allocate in the next fiscal year alone. The governor’s proposal is the first step in a six-month budget process. In the months ahead, the Senate and Assembly will hold detailed hearings covering all aspects of state revenues and expenditures, the governor will present a revised budget based on changes in economic conditions and legislative priorities, and then a final budget will be passed, reflecting negotiations between the governor and legislative leaders. Some of the final numbers will differ from the governor’s early proposal, but I am confident that this will be another in a string of annual budgets that will have positive impacts in San Diego and California. —Toni G. Atkins represents the 39th District in the California Senate. Follow her on Twitter @SenToniAtkins.v

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


PETCO SOLAR Faulconer’s commitment to the city being 100 percent clean energy driven by 2035. Faulconer, who released his Climate Action Plan in 2015, also joined two other city mayors last year to pursue a Sierra Club initiative designed to encourage other mayors around the country to adopt similar policies. “This solar project reaffirms San Diego as the leader in solar and the city’s commitment to 100 percent clean energy,” Faulconer said at the Jan. 17 press conference announcing the solar project. “We are leading by example for the country to see that solar power is the future, today. We are determined to be a leader in creating a clean energy future.” “San Diego’s citywide commitment to reduce our carbon footprint and increase our use of renewable energy is most visible right here in Downtown,” said San Diego City Councilmember Chris Ward at the press conference. “Through better transit, green buildings and now the largest solar project in Major League Baseball, the Padres are truly helping San Diego lead by example." Sullivan Solar Power started very humbly in a San Diego garage in 2004 — the same year Petco Park opened — and has since installed over 6,200 solar power systems of all sizes and shapes, both commercial and residential; has expanded to locations in Orange County

and Riverside; has grown to over $50 million in revenues; and is approaching 200 employees. “As a native San Diegan, I could not be prouder that the Padres are joining the solar energy revolution and showing the world that we no longer need dirty fossil fuels to power our needs,” offered Daniel Sullivan, founder and president of Sullivan Solar Power. “I founded Sullivan Solar Power 14 years ago to create a case study in San Diego, proving we have the technology, financing and skill to fundamentally change the way we generate electricity — this project highlights that we are leading the solar energy revolution.” The Padres started planning this project a year ago and received a number of bids from other companies vying for the project, Sullivan said, but his company’s research and preparation made it through the acquisition process. “This project is a grand slam,” he said. “It’s exciting to be a part of.” With the award announced in the spring of 2017, Sullivan said he had a signed contract in September of 2017 and construction began in December. Initial panels were laid down the same week of the press conference in January 2018. The complete installation will include the infrastructure to support 716 individual 470-watt solar modules manufactured by Sullivan partner Sunpower; it will generate 330 kilowatts of solar power and 12 million kilowatt hours over 25 years.

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David Nileit (City of San Diego)


Sullivan Solar Power install team is in the middle of a three-month install of the largest solar power system on a baseball stadium within the MLB. Photos show the team’s progression on the rooftop of Petco Park, while installing the infrastructure (top photo) and the solar modules (bottom photo). The project is scheduled to be complete before March 29, opening day for the San Diego Padres 2018 baseball season. (Courtesy Sullivan Solar Power) The project is part of a multi-year revitalization effort for the park, which also included the video board, and a 2015 initiative to replace existing high-maintenance light fixtures with 400 LED modules, making Petco Park 100-percent LED. “With Petco Park serving as the premier sports and entertainment venue in San Diego, we take pride in continuing to make it the most energy-efficient and sustainable facility possible,” said Padres Chief Operating Officer Erik Greupner in a press release. “We are pleased to partner with Sullivan Solar Power on this project, which represents a further step by the Padres to improve the energy efficiency and sustainability of Petco Park.” With dozens of local Sullivan Solar Power employees focused on the project across all departments of the company as well as their

two partners, Sunpower and SMA America, also involved, the installation is projected to be complete in advance of the Padres 2018 season’s opening day, which this year falls on March 29, against the Milwaukee Brewers. “Installing solar on the top of Petco Park is no easy feat, but we are proving that it can be done,” Sullivan said. “The Padres going solar is getting national attention. We are setting the example for the country to see that no matter how difficult the scope may be, we are determined to be a leader in creating a clean energy future.” Sullivan is passionate about eliminating the world’s dependence on fossil fuels. San Diego Downtown News profiled him in 2016 [“The passions of a solar phenom,” Vol. 17, Issue 7, or online at ], so it is no surprise that his contract with the Padres includes a provision where Sullivan’s team is able to host educational workshops throughout the Padres’ 2018 season, sharing with baseball fans in attendance the importance of going solar. “At Sullivan Solar Power, our vision is to fundamentally change the way we generate electricity,” Sullivan added. “We are proud to help the Padres reduce their carbon footprint, lessening the need to import dirty fossil fuels that pollute our air and cause conflict across the world.” To learn more about this solar project, visit —Morgan M. Hurley can be reached at morgan@sdcnn. com.v

On Feb. 1, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer announced the appointment of Chief David Nisleit – the current San Diego Police Department (SDPD) Assistant Chief – as the next Chief of Police. Assistant Chief Nisleit has worked for SDPD for three decades in various capacities. Currently, he is responsible for nine patrol commands, the Watch Commander’s Office and the Homeless Outreach Team. He has previously held leadership positions in SWAT; the Gang Unit, the Centralized Investigations unit; and the Western, Northern and MidCity Patrol divisions. “As a native San Diegan and someone who has dedicated the last 30 years of his life to this city and department, it is both a privilege and an honor to become the next San Diego Police Chief,” Nisleit said in a press release announcing his selection. “Keeping San Diego one of the safest large cities in America will be one of my top priorities.” Nisleit will replace Chief Shelley Zimmerman, who has served in the role since March 2014. After a 35-year SDPD career, Chief Zimmerman is stepping down to retire. “Assistant Chief Dave Nisleit and I have worked together for years. He is hardworking, honest, and fair. I trust him and believe that he will do an excellent job as San Diego’s next chief of police,” Assemblymember Todd Gloria said in a statement after the appointment. “I have spoken with Dave and he is committed to being a chief of police that collaborates with the community, seeks neighborhood input and builds partnerships with stakeholders.” The months-long national search to replace Chief Zimmerman began in September 2017. The selection process involved community and professional interview panels, which yielded overwhelming recommendation of Nisleit from both groups. “The interview panels saw what I already knew about Chief Nisleit: that he is a man of character who cares deeply about San Diego, our residents and our officers,” Faulconer said in the release. In addition to community policing, Faulconer also noted that Nisleit will focus his efforts on a national recruiting effort to achieve a fully-staffed department.v


FILM FESTIVAL greed is considered a virtue, is not working. We should be open to new ways of creating a better economic system for all and not just for some. (DTN) To nearly 1 million voters for president, Debs was a hero of ordinary Americans. Yet, he was ridiculed by the status quo and eventually imprisoned for his beliefs. President Woodrow Wilson called him a traitor and refused to pardon the political prisoner. What are the enduring legacies of Debs? (YS) First, Debs did not just talk the talk, but walked the walk. He was willing to go to prison (sentenced to 10 years) for his beliefs that the United States should not have entered World War I. It was a war where thousands of young men died, and industrialists around the world just got richer. He showed that democratic socialism is an alternative economic philosophy that was fairer for all. He was able to connect with races, ethnicities and religions. In fact, much of Debs’ support came from the poor, white Evangelical Christians living in areas we today consider red states like Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and Texas. Debs said, “Socialism empowers the farmer and gives him a purpose and a vision far richer and far more to be respected than the competitive lonely search for personal wealth that now is the cornerstone of our capitalistic culture.”

Eugene Victor Debs was a passionate orator Debs was deeply religious, and his worldview was based on Christian morality. It’s not these tenets, but the priorities of many Evangelical Christians, that seem to have changed. (DTN) One of the interesting points in the film was that in 1908 Debs drew 15,000 people to a rally in San Diego, which was a backwater town with a population of around 38,000. What does that say about his populism, and do you have any other stories about his visit to San Diego? (YS) Debs brought his “Red Special” 1908 presidential campaign to San Diego. This was during the free speech era of 1907-16, when there were 1,000 registered socialists in San Diego. Some of them were members of the newly formed International Workers of the World (I.W.W.), which had thousands of members and sympathizers in the Northwest and

West Coast among men and women who worked especially as longshoremen, lumbermen and farm workers. The likes of union organizer songster Joe Hill, union activist Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Debs and many others visited San Diego from 1908 to 1912. They would place the platform setup at E Street just below Broadway, where these socialists made passionate stump speeches to thousands in English and Spanish. Often the police, backed by fire hoses and vigilantes, came to break up the free speech demonstrations with hundreds of activists being beaten up, jailed or run out of town. Finally, in March 1912, the City Council banned street meetings in the Downtown area that served as the stage for political soap-boxers. Activism is alive and well in San Diego — just look at the number of people who marched last year and this year in the Women’s March. I hope anyone who feels we can be a more just and humane society sees this film before November’s elections. The San Diego Jewish Film Festival described it as essentially a course in Resistance 101, and I think that’s pretty apt. First Run Features is working on getting more screenings in San Diego. To learn more about the 28th annual San Diego Jewish Film Festival and see the full lineup, visit —Ken Williams is the former editor of Uptown News. Follow him on Twitter at @KenSanDiego.v

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018 FROM PAGE 6

INTERNET practices. Before the FCC’s vote, Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced a multi-tiered plan to preserve net neutrality for Washingtonians, including cutting down on state benefits to ISPs that don’t adhere to net neutrality principles and taking measures to bring more competition to the broadband marketplace. Just after the vote, California Senator Scott Weiner announced his plans to introduce a bill preserving net neutrality protections for Californians. And this is just the beginning.

Defending net neutrality at home

Net neutrality begins at home. One of the most important ways that we can soften the blow of losing the FCC’s net neutrality protections is to push for local policies that offer users real choices and ISPs that adhere to net neutrality principles. The majority of Americans have only one option for a broadband internet provider. If that provider decides to block or throttle its users’ traffic, users have no options. To make matters worse, those providers often have de facto monopolies thanks to local government policies. Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is

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working with policymakers and activists across the country to push for community broadband. We're working in particular with allies in San Francisco to develop a neutral infrastructure and policies for competition among providers that can serve as a model for cities across the country. If cities invest in good internet infrastructure — and allow multiple providers to access that infrastructure — then users can have recourse when a single provider acts unfairly.

It’s not over. Call Congress now.

FCC may be abdicating its role in protecting the open internet, but we will not. In the courts, in the halls of Congress, in our local communities, online and in the streets, Team Internet will fight for net neutrality — and we’ll be counting on you to join us. You can start today: Call your members of Congress and urge them to use the Congressional Review Act to save the Open Internet Order. —Corynne McSherry is legal director and Elliott Harmon is an activist at Electronic Frontier Foundation, a national organization dedicate to the free and open internet, as well as championing civil liberties in the digital world. For more information, visit


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


Letting it all hang out

Theater Review Jean Lowerison San Diego Musical Theatre celebrates its 10th anniversary with a return to their debut show — “The Full Monty” — which, coincidentally, got its start in 2000 at San Diego’s Old Globe Theatre. Those steel-drivin’ strippers from Buffalo will now go through their paces through Feb. 25 in their new digs, the Horton Grand Theatre in the Gaslamp Quarter. You remember the plot, based on the 1997 film: Six steelworkers in Buffalo get laid off and find themselves home, playing househusband — and feeling like “Scrap” — while their wives go out to work. The major players are Jerry Lukowski (Steven Freitas) and Dave Bukatinsky (Danny

(l to r) Jack Eld, Jon Sangster, Danny Stiles, Steven Freitas, Richard Van Slyke and Ron Christopher Jones in a scene from “The Full Monty” (l to r) Out of work steelworkers Dave Bukantinsky (Danny Stiles) and Jerry Lukowski (Steven Freitas) plan a scheme to make some money. (Photos by Ken Jacques)

Stiles). Jerry is separated from wife Pam (Amy Perkins) and in arrears on child support payments, to the point that Pam has taken their young son Nate (Owen Schmutz) and moved in with richer boyfriend Teddy Slaughter (Alex Nemiroski), leaving her and Jerry with

Joy Yandell play’s one of the steelworker's wives.

barely a civil word to say to each other. Dave’s problem isn’t wife Georgie (Joy Yandell), but the extra pounds that have made him so self-conscious that he hasn’t even approached Georgie in months. The search for jobs proves fruitless. One day, Jerry sees a bunch of local women excitedly lining up to pay $50 to watch the Chippendales — and the thought dawns that a one-night show featuring steelworkers as strippers might save their hides, or at least pay the rent for a month or two. It’s a crazy idea, right? But hey — if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. Now to recruit dancers. Auditions (and rehearsals) are a hoot and so is Devlin as accompanist Jeanette

(l to r) Danny Stiles and Steven Freitas Burmeister, a down-to-earth theater broad who’s seen and heard it all and has a wisecrack for every occasion. The only applicant with any dance experience — Harold (Richard Van Slyke) — reluctantly agrees to take on the job of teaching the quintet how to do it, though his experience is in ballroom dance. But several of the guys are game. Elderly (by stripper standards) “Horse” (Ron Christopher Jones) proves age is no barrier to ability (though it may take a bit of a toll on agility), and gets to sing a gas of a song called “Big Black Man.” There’s also lonely Malcolm MacGregor (Jonathan Sangster), in his own words “a complete loser who still lives at home with his mother Molly” (Amy Perkins). The good news is that one night he finds friends in Dave and Jerry when they rescue him from a suicide attempt. The better news is that he auditions. Then there’s Ethan Girard (Jack Eld), who cheerfully admits he can’t sing or dance, but causes general gasping when he displays other attributes. But how to compete with those Chippendales hunks? Clearly, these local steel-drivin’ men will have to get a gimmick. How about going the full monty? That’s the slight plot. The show (nominated for 10 Tonys) works because of

“The Full Monty” Through Feb. 25 Wednesdays and Thursdays, 7:30 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sundays at 2 p.m. Horton Grand Theatre 444 Fourth Ave., Downtown. Tickets: 858-560-5740 or Terrence McNally’s charming, funny, sometimes even poignant script, David Yazbeck’s music and lyrics and the sheer humanity of these characters, just trying to get through life and pay their bills. The versatile rented set allows Director Neil Dale to keep the action going, and Kevin Anthenill, Michelle Miles and Janet Pitcher contribute fine sound, lighting and costumes. And the invisible 12-member band performs mightily, under the fine direction of Don Le Master. “The Full Monty” makes no claims of profundity, but it’s an amusing, energetic production with a message that is still relevant. —Jean Lowerison is a long-standing member of the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle and can be reached at

San Diego Downtown News | February 2018



LIT TLE ITALY’S LARGEST INDOOR MARKET IS HERE Roma Urban Market proves that exquisite things come in big packages. The 10,000-square-foot market encompasses sections brimming with hot and cold foods, plus a pizza kitchen and a marble-topped bar where beer, wine, coffee and housebaked pastries are served. It spans the ground floor of the MCS Orchard Plaza, a sleek multi-story commercial building located at 555 W. Beech St. Loaded with hundreds of unique grocery products, including dried pastas from Italy and fresh produce from local farms, Roma is also home to more than 200 hard-to-find international wines and spirits. Whether you’re looking for a prized bottle of malbec from Argentina or rare small-batch vodka from Iceland, you can find them along with many other eclectic imports in the market’s wine and liquor retail section just inside the main entrance. Roma Urban Market was founded in 1953 in Pasadena by a Sicilian immigrant who first ran a fruit and vegetable cart in New York City before moving to California. A group now carries the torch with a beefed-up inventory of groceries and prepared foods that can be carried out or enjoyed at the coffee bar — or within three different outdoor seating areas, one of which puts you in a central atrium distinguished by lush flora and a soothing water fountain. With so much in the offing, patrons can essentially drop in for coffee and a berry scone for breakfast; return during lunch for fresh pizza, made-to-order sandwiches or a customized salad from the salad bar; and then come back after work to unwind during happy hour (5–7 p.m. daily) over wine, craft beer and complimentary finger food.

Roma Urban Market is a boon for Little Italy. (Photo by SDCNN)

Undecided what to do for dinner? A stroll through the aisles leads you to grab-and-go meatballs, mac n’ cheese, meat or vegetarian arancini, and a host of other delicious meals made onsite throughout the day. You can also purchase all of the essential ingredients for making pizza at home, starting with house-made dough and tomato sauce to fresh mozzarella and various toppings. In addition, if you’re in need of necessities such as dairy products, paper goods and toiletries, you’ll find them here. Roma’s interior design is both chic and Old World, as though you are strolling down a charming European street lined with contemporary shops and eateries. Many have compared it to New York’s famous Eataly, a large marketplace noted for its gastronomic delights that has branched into multiple cities.

Healthy meals to go are made fresh daily. (Photo by Eric Enciso)

Salad and deli options abound inside the market. (Photo by Eric Enciso)

The fi ndings here at Roma are very similar as you peruse the shelves and cooler cases stocked with everything from olive oils, gourmet sauces and condiments, to housemade sausages, lasagna, artisan cheeses, breads and pastries. Over at the deli counter, foods such as assorted olives, house-made salads like herbed chicken, as well as top-quality meats are but a few of the temptations difficult to ignore amid the other culinary sights and smells coming at you from all directions. They include the fabulous lineup of house-made bakery items found at the coffee/beer/ wine bar, where luscious tiramisu, red velvet whoopie pies, bright lemon bars and plump cannoli wink at you from their glass display cases. The market keeps those with special dietary needs in mind. To-go pizzas, for example, can be made with

gluten-free crusts. Many vegetarian items are available, and a variety of organic products can be found on the grocery shelves. Just as the owners intended, the market is not only a grocery store, but a stylish bistro and food emporium that serves as a community gathering spot tailored for locals and out-of-towners alike. Located at 555 W. Beech St., Roma Urban Market is open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday through Wednesday, and until 10 p.m., Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. For more information, call 619-255-5700 or The kitchen uses fresh, locally sourced ingredivisit romaurbanmar- ents for making a variety of hearty dishes, such as lasagna. (Photo by Eric Enciso)

The market carries more than 200 different wines from vineyards throughout the world. (Photo by Eric Enciso)


Pizzas of many varieties are made to order and can be enjoyed inside the market or taken to go. (Photo by Eric Enciso)



San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


A brewpub with a full cocktail bar and restaurant has opened on Broadway. (Courtesy The Bell Marker) reserved for rotating selections of guest beers. The Bell Marker also features an ambitious cocktail program and a food menu, offering everything from ricotta fritters and mushroom pate to steamed clams, cassoulet and a variety of inventive

pizzas, such as the “salad pie” topped with marinara sauce and chopped salad. It opens daily at 5 p.m., although we’re told that lunch service will begin sometime in February. 602 Broadway, 619-756-7599,

Giacomo Puccini


MG Beyer Seafood is up and running in the East Village after operating as a food truck for the past 10 years. Known for its sprightly ceviches, smoked tuna tacos and seafood cocktails, the sit-down eatery also sells beer, which is used in a few different types of micheladas. 317 Tenth Ave., 619-236-8156.

Downtown’s modern American brewpub, The Bell Marker, opened recently in an 8,000-squarefoot space flaunting custom-built sconces, brass lighting fixtures and maple wood booths. The venture is named after the mission bell markers found along the historic El Camino Real trail. The onsite brewing operation is led by San Diego native Noah Regnery, whose beer-making skills earned him numerous awards while working at Pizza Port Brewing Company. Signature roll outs so far include a cream ale, Hefeweizen, brown ale, pale ale and an IPA, with the remainder of the tap system

The savory Cubano at Havana 1920 (Courtesy Wicked Creative)


Cold-hearted princess Turandot is desired by all men and wants none. Can a handsome stranger match her wits and melt her heart?


It’s a deal that we thought was too good to be true. On the 21st of every month, from 4 to 6 p.m., Cafe 21 — located in the Gaslamp Quarter and University Heights — sells its housemade sangrias for only 21 cents a glass. They come in a variety of flavors such as persimmon, apple cider, blueberry-guava and more. The restaurant at both locations opens at 8 a.m. daily and is lauded for its crafty cuisine, which includes dishes such as cast-iron omelets, sweet and savory crepes, hot sandwiches, flatbreads and kabobs. 802 Fifth Ave., 619-795-0721 and 2736 Adams Ave., 619-640-2121;

A craft beer gastropub serving suds from San Diego breweries, as well as “elevated bar fare,” has opened in the lobby level of the Manchester Grand Hyatt’s Seaport Tower. Known as Brew30 California Taps, the redesigned space replaces Redfield’s Sports Bar and features 30 taps, most of them dedicated to local breweries and with two reserved for barrel-aged cocktails from Cutwater Spirits. The food menu focuses on a variety of burgers, including the trendy, meatless “Impossible Burger,” which has impressed food critics throughout the U.S. with its convincing flavor and texture. 1 Market Place, 619-2321234, The hot, new Havana 1920 in the Gaslamp Quarter recently launched lunch service with a menu that captures many of its popular dinner dishes. Look for Cuban croquettes and empanadas with various fi llings; papas rellenas with ground beef and peppers; twice-fried green plantains with royale sauce; and authentic Cubano sandwiches made with roasted pork, ham, Swiss cheese, pickles and mustard. 548 Fifth Ave., 619-501-1919,

Sangrias on the cheap at a popular Gaslamp Quarter restaurant (Courtesy Cafe 21)

ravishingly seductive... unquestionably powerful…”

Husband and wife restaurateurs, James and Jenny Pyo, have soft opened Harumama in Little Italy. The couple also operates Pokewan in Carmel Valley and Blue Ocean Robata & Sushi Bar in Carlsbad. Their latest project offers playful takes on Chinese, Korean and Japanese fare, complemented by wine, sake and Asian beers. Look for unique selections of ramen as well as steamed buns crafted into cartoon-like characters of chickens and pigs. 1901 Columbia St., 619-269-7122,

—The New York Times


(619) 533-7000 Steamed “character” buns at a new, upcoming Asian restaurant (Courtesy Katalyst Public Relations)

—Frank Sabatini Jr can be reached at


Licks and screams Restaurant Review Frank Sabatini Jr. So what if it wasn’t “ice cream weather” when I took my maiden plunge into Salt & Straw, the hyped ice cream maker out of Portland, Oregon, that debuted here in December. On this nippy and breezy 60-degree afternoon, the line snaked out the door and left me standing on the sidewalk with other thin-blooded San Diegans eager to blanket our tongues in cold, creamy sweetness. I’m told that in Portland, patrons often queue up outside of Salt & Straw’s ice cream parlors under more inclement climate conditions. And now I know why. Chalk it up to the ice cream’s high butterfat content, which supposedly ranks at 17 percent, opposed to the standard 10 percent in most other brands. The second draw is the unconventional flavors. Some of them are downright freaky, such as the peanut butter stout folding in pieces of pork rinds (chicharron) that are dipped in dark chocolate. As a February-only flavor, the “bar au chocolat’s poire belle Helene” combines chocolate and cream with poached pears. Now there’s a fruit I don’t ever recall seeing blended into ice cream anywhere — not even at Hammond’s, which will give Salt & Straw some serious

competition with its three locations (Point Loma, Pacific Beach and North Park) and ice creams that are as sinfully rich in butterfat. In my two visits to Salt & Straw, chummy staffers greeted me and other customers as we neared the order counter, offering taste samples from a list of signature and seasonal flavors scribbled onto chalkboards. Dispensed in small, metal spoons, you can seemingly taste as many as you like without anybody looking down their noses at you. It’s actually vital to the decision process. The ice creams are sold in scoops, with or without a small sugar cone or a sizable

& Straw)


Salt & Straw

1670 India St. (Little Italy) 619-542-9394, Prices: Single scoops with or without a sugar cone, $3.90 and $4.90; with waffle cones, $4.90 and $5.90; pints to go, $10.50 roasted strawberry and toasted white chocolate I sampled. Though hospitably creamy, I struggled to taste the fruit and wondered what the heck toasted white chocolate is supposed to taste like.

Beer from Belching Beaver Brewery is used in the peanut butter stout ice cream. (Courtesy Salt & Straw)

drool-worthy waffle cone made in-house. Numerous samples led me to a couple of determined purchases. My hands-down favorite was the “freckled woodblock chocolate,” a silly sounding name given to a recipe involving roasted cocoa beans from Portland’s Woodblock Chocolate and sea salt from the Oregon coast. A single scoop I ordered (without a cone) contained thousands of near-invisible flecks of the chocolate and salt, resulting in a dangerously addicting ice cream I’m certain most of us have never encountered. Every lick yielded a flavor rush that was both powerful and soothing at the same time. Avocado and Oaxacan chocolate fudge ice cream I can’t say (Courtesy Salt & Straw) the same for the

Roasted cocoa beans and sea salt unite in the must-try “freckled woodblock chocolate.” (Courtesy Salt

San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

My other samples included a respectable vegan creation called “mint chip whoopie pie,” which was on its way out with several other vegan selections available throughout January. If it returns — perhaps in March after the company’s online “vote back your favorite series” concludes — I’d be willing to cuddle up with a pint of it at home for further evaluation. I continued on with chocolate gooey brownie (ordinary), honey-lavender (too subtle) and another vegan flavor called candied mango (overly sweet) before happily settling for a scoop of the said peanut butter stout on a waffle cone. Good stuff, although the avocado with Oaxacan chocolate fudge was a near contender, mainly because the fudge presented a fine depth of flavor. The avocado not so much. Part of Salt & Straw’s business model is to source various ingredients from local purveyors when creating flavors specific to each location. The stout ice cream, for example, is made with Belching Beaver Brewery’s peanut butter milk stout, which is mixed with cream and steeped in the same malts the beer is brewed. I’m not sure where the chocolate-covered pork rinds

The popular Portland-based ice cream parlor joined Little Italy in December. (Photo by Erin Jackson)

originate, but they lend a mysterious, savory flavor to the profile. Starting Feb. 2 and continuing through March 1, is Salt & Straw’s “chocolatiers” series, which will source from five California-based chocolate makers, including Chuao from Encinitas. They were selected by head ice cream maker Tyler Malek, who co-founded Salt & Straw in 2011 with his cousin, Kim Malek.

Look for flavors that include tri-colored “chocolate paint,” raspberry rose, hazelnut praline, the aforementioned chocolate-pear, and more. —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career more than two decades ago as a staffer for the former San Diego Tribune. You can reach him at

“The most perfect comedy in the English language.” The Daily Telegraph

By Oscar Wilde Directed by Maria Aitken Now – March 4

By Anton Chekhov Translated by Richard Nelson, Richard Pevear, and Larissa Volokhonsky Directed by Richard Nelson February 10 – March 11

Customers choose between sugar and house-made waffle cones. (Photo by Frank Sabatini Jr.)

(619) 23-GLOBE (234-5623) Top: Helen Cespedes and Kate Abbruzzese. Above: Jay O. Sanders. Photos by Jim Cox.


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

A new look and venue for the historic Coliseum By Joan Wojcik East Village is steeped in San Diego history with its many historical buildings. One such building, named the Coliseum, was home to many famous boxing matches starring numerous boxing greats, including James J. Braddock (whose life was depicted in “Cinderella Man”), Ken Norton and Archie Moore. The Coliseum, located on the corner of F and 15th streets in East Village, closed its doors in 1974 to the Coliseum’s boxing history and ended San Diego’s once-great boxing era. The Coliseum has remained dark for many years but is once again re-opening its doors. Instead of boxing greats, the grand reopening of the Coliseum in mid-March will introduce a new entertainment venue to the neighborhood, Punch Bowl Social. Founded by Robert Thompson, Punch Bowl Social uses the concept of merging social games, great food and congeniality under one roof. Punch Bowl Socials are very popular and unique entertainment centers with locations in Denver

and 10 other cities across the country with nine slated for opening in 2018. The style and cuisine of each Punch Bowl Social reflects the culture and distinctiveness of its specific neighborhood. The San Diego Punch Bowl Social will reflect the edgy, gritty and bold atmosphere of its new neighborhood — East Village — and it will incorporate the building’s 1920s mission architecture with its rich, past boxing history. The rehabilitation of the building includes the use of exposed wood beams, rounded arches, decorative tile work, a red tile roof and white stucco walls. The details of the interior design introduce a combination of leather, rope and exposed air ducts, creating an industrial palate and resulting in a warm, masculine feel with a vintage look. Serving as the entertainment and restaurant anchor for the Makers Quarter’s development in northeast East Village, Punch Bowl Social will cater to the projected number of young professionals, married couples and families who will be living throughout the neighborhood

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and the greater Downtown area. Entertainment will include eight bowling alleys, pool tables, karaoke centers and a variety of arcade games, several bar areas, live entertainment and separate dining areas. With the added ambiance and updated atmosphere of this unique, historic landmark, the Coliseum will continue to be an important social hangout for the community of East Village. Look for the grand opening in March of 2018 for East Village’s newest social venue, Punch Bowl Social. —Joan Wojcik is the president of the East Village Residents Group. Contact Joan at eastvillageresidentsgroup@ or visit


The history of the U.S. Grant Hotel

Gaslamp Landmarks Sandee Wilhoit When Alonzo Horton arrived in San Diego in 1867, he purchased what we now know as Downtown San Diego for 27 1/2 cents an acre. He immediately set about laying out the city grid, selling lots and making improvements to what he described as “heaven on earth.” Within 20 years, the city had replaced Old Town as the commercial center and a stopping point for businessmen, tourists and shipping. One of Horton’s greatest contributions was the Horton House Hotel, San Diego’s first major hotel. This was later to become the site of the nationally designated historic U.S. Grant Hotel.

A matchbook from the famed hotel

At the turn of the 20th century, Ulysses S. Grant Jr. — or Buck Grant, as he was called — moved his family from New York to San Diego. He had suffered financial difficulties on Wall Street and felt that he needed a new start. He immediately began a series of investments — he made money, lost money and usually just broke even. However, his wife, Fannie Chaffee Grant, daughter of Jerome B. Chaffee, the first senator from Colorado, made the wise decision to buy the Horton House Hotel for $56,000. She then deeded the property to her husband. Buck Grant was adventurous, resourceful and imaginative. He believed that what San Diego needed was a truly grand hotel. Although his financial problems continued, his plan was to build such a hotel in memory of his father, Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th president of the United States. With little cash on hand, in 1906 he razed the Horton House, and began construction of his visionary project on the same site. Shortly after the first beams were put in place, San Francisco suffered a catastrophic earthquake, making the transfer and procurement of building materials almost impossible. The skeletal construction site of Buck’s visionary hotel remained sadly silent. The construction resumed in 1907 and to celebrate the resumption of the project, Grant Jr. embedded a time capsule in the arch above the main entrance. It contained personal family photos, memorabilia and a newspaper clipping about the proposed hotel. More things were added in 1910 when the hotel opened, but the capsule was then lost, only to be rediscovered in 2005 by a local resident Veva Haache. The capsule is now under a stone medallion in the elevator lobby. It must be noted that Mr. Grant lacked the funds needed to complete the hotel, so San Diego voters helped finance the

San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

A 1944 postcard from the U.S. Grant Hotel, 326 Broadway Architect, Harrison Albright; Style: Classic Revival (All images courtesy GQHF)

project with $700,000 of the required $1.5 million required for completion. One year before the hotel was to open, the Grant family suffered yet another tragedy. Fannie Chaffee Grant, who had been in ill health, passed away on Nov. 10, 1909. The daunting project was finally completed in 1910. It was a luxurious palace of 437 rooms featuring top floor arcade windows, balcony balustrades and imposing dentil cornices. Additional features were two swimming pools, a Grand Ballroom on the top floor, and a sweeping Italian marble staircase with an alabaster railing that led from the massive tiled lobby to the elegant Palm Court above. The color scheme, shades of blue, reflected the presidential blue shade and the ever-blue skies over San Diego. Opening day, Oct. 15, 1910, was a full day and night celebration of epic proportions capped by the unveiling of a new fountain in the adjacent Horton Park Plaza. The fountain, a gift from the city, was the world’s first electrically lit fountain, and was designed by prominent local architect, Irving Gill.

Although the hotel was partially refurbished in the 1980s, it declined and fell on hard times in the 1990s. It changed hands several times and was ultimately purchased by the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation in 2003. It had been saved from demolition by its inclusion on the National Historic Registry. It was then closed and after an extensive renovation, reopened in October of 2006. The Grand Ballroom was converted to two bi-level presidential suites with magnificent views of the city. The evening primrose, the tribal flower of the Sycuan and Kumeyaay nations, is featured throughout the hotel, including in the hand-milled carpet of the Grand Lobby, the ceilings of the Crystal Ballroom and the molding of the Chaffee Court. Additional features are 33,000 square feet of meeting space spread over 22 venues and a Presidential Ballroom, which was once an open-air terrace designed by Kate Sessions, the landscaper of Balboa Park. The Grant’s signature restaurant, the Grant Grill, which was not open to ladies until 1969, was also fully restored to its original elegance. As the Kumeyaay are one of four Native American tribes that are indigenous to San

Diego and can trace their roots back 10,000 years, it seems more than fitting that they now own the land that they originally controlled. Throughout the years, the U.S. Grant has hosted 14 U.S. presidents, Albert Einstein, Charles Lindbergh, the inaugural Comic-Con festival, a speakeasy during Prohibition, the annual reunion of the Great White Fleet Association, and a fancy nightclub called The Little Club. It was also the location of the first “fireside chat” delivered by President Franklin Roosevelt outside of Washington D.C., which took place from the Grant’s 11th floor radio station, now the Presidential Penthouse Suite. In addition, the Grant owns one of only two existing portraits of President Ulysses S. Grant; the other hangs in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. The U.S. Grant still proudly overlooks Horton Plaza and stands as a magnificent and stately reminder of an elegant past and one of San Diego’s most treasured landmarks. —Sandee Wilhoit is the historian for the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation. She can be reached at


1915 postcard showing U.S. Grant Hotel’s Grand Lobby



San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

Top spot to celebrate Valentine’s Day Little Italy News Christopher Gomez The holiday of love is upon us and it’s time to start making plans to celebrate with your loved one. From gift shopping to date ideas, Little Italy is a romantic, Italian neighborhood where you can cover all of your bases. Treat yourself and your significant other to unique gifts, an intimate meal, a leisurely stroll, cocktails and dessert in the cultural hub. Here are a few ways you and your sweetheart can commemorate V-Day in Little Italy: Find the perfect gift — You’ll be able to find that wonderfully thoughtful gift

at one of the great shops and boutiques that Little Italy has to offer. Check out Love & Aesthetics for fine fragrances, jewelry and apothecary; Vocabulary and Little Apple for fashionable clothing and accessories; or Adelman Fine Art for beautiful art pieces. Enjoy a delicious dinner with your Valentine — Celebrate Valentine’s Day by splitting a bottle of wine and eating a delicious meal with your special someone. Little Italy has a vast selection of atmospheric, popular restaurants, including Juniper and Ivy, Civico 1845, Enoteca Style Wine Bar, Buon Appetito, Nonna + Zucchero, and more. Don’t forget to make a reservation! Take a neighborhood stroll under the stars




— After dinner, you and your Valentine can meander the sidewalks of Little Italy hand-inhand and enjoy the picturesque views. You’ll want to stop mid-stroll and take a break at one of the charming piazzas, like the new Piazza Pescatore. Stop for a drink — If you’re not quite ready for the evening to be over, grab a cocktail in the area. If you’re craving a margarita, order a round at El Camino. If you and your Valentine are in the mood for a specialty cocktail, try Craft & Commerce or the Kettner Exchange. End the night on a sweet note — Every Valentine’s Day should feature a decadent dessert; end your special night by stopping for something sweet. Take your date and swing by one of the many dessert spots Little Bring your Valentine to Little Italy for a lil’ romance. (Photos by Luna Photo) Italy has to offer, like the brand-new Salt & Straw, Extraordinary To stay connected with the about events, visit littleitDesserts, or iDessert. Little Italy, check out what’s From Valentine’s Day prepagoing on in the neighborhood ration to romantic celebration, by following us on Instagram —Christopher Gomez has Little Italy makes for a top spot and Twitter, @LittleItalySD been Little Italy’s district manfor you and your significant and find us on Facebook / ager since 2000. Reach him at other to spend the holiday. LittleItalySD. To learn more

HELP WANTED San Diego Community News Network, (, has an opening for an advertising sales representative to join our six-newspaper publishing company to sell print advertising and our digital products. Our newspaper group includes San Diego Downtown News, San Diego Uptown News, Mission Valley News, Mission Times Courier, La Mesa Courier and Gay San Diego.

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


A celebration of culture, camaraderie and collaboration Little Italy Heritage Tom Cesarini Our local community has a long-standing tradition of the Italian-American influence, and Convivio has been a leader in preserving and advancing the Italian-American cultural narrative in our community. Unity of purpose, mutual respect and collaboration have long served as prime tenets of Convivio since its inception. We are privileged to work with many like-minded groups in San Diego to promote the arts and culture of our region and our recent partnership with the Little Italy Association highlights the importance of collaboration: Through the Amici House, the cottage that serves as the new Italian cultural and historical hub, Italians and Italophiles now have a central spot in which to engage in all things Italian. We wholeheartedly express our gratitude to the Little Italy Association for its vision and hard work as well as its support for this new initiative in the Little Italy neighborhood, which will serve as a vital link between the Italian contributions of the past and the ever-evolving Italian cultural influence of today.

Amici House Programs

(Launching this month!) The Italian School: Donation-based, no-fee, no-money-up-front Italian classes! Our method uses complete immersion in the Italian language through role playing and multimedia presentations. Throw away your notes and jump right in!

You will naturally develop speaking and comprehension skills in a fun and nurturing environment. Convivio Canvas: Our learn-to-paint series. Convivio Concert Series: Launching with Open-Air Arias, an opera-in-the-park exclusive. Films al Fresco: Outdoor screenings of Italian and Italian-American cinema classics.

Shoebox Nights: Heritagepreservation-throughdigitization workshops.

Convivio calendar of events

● Convivio Communitas Award for Leadership: March 21 This year’s award recipient is Ann Navarra, co-owner of Jerome’s Furniture, for her commitment to a multitude of business, academic, and civic

projects in our community. Award ceremony and roast co-sponsored by the University of San Diego. ● Italian Heritage Weekend: May 31–June 2 A celebration of Italian heritage through sport, music, education, food, and friends — all leading up to Italian Republic Day (June 2)! ● May 31: Italian American Heritage Night at Petco Park with the San Diego Padres.

● June 1: The Mario Cuomo Scholarship Dinner and Concert. ● June 2: The Concert for Shelter & Culture featuring Sal “The Voice” Valentinetti. You can find all our program information on our website at Stay connected through Facebook and Twitter @conviviosociety. —Tom Cesarini is the executive director of Convivio. Reach him at

Honoring our Italian Heritage - One Story at a Time

Are you part of an Italian-American community group looking to archive your individual and collective materials? Our preservation team can come speak to your group about how to properly preserve your historical artifacts, and they will lead a digitizing session for you as well! Enjoy a lively atmosphere while we digitize your artifacts for inclusion in the Italian Community Archives!

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

Introducing … Canvas

Downtown Partnership News Lana Harrison You might know the feeling. The one of hurrying down an urban sidewalk and suddenly finding yourself stopping, head turned in an upward gaze at a massive work of art. It can be awe-inspiring, encouraging, thought-provoking. A mural leaves an impression, a sense of place. An experience like this shapes our memories of place — the sense that lingers with us when we walk away from the mural or visit a restaurant, boutique shop or gym. What sort of impressions are we creating of Downtown San Diego?

In August of 2017, we hosted place-making expert, Fred Kent. Nearly 100 people joined us for a workshop led by Fred and his team to challenge our conceptions of how we, as a community, can utilize public spaces to best meet the needs of the community. It wasn’t about constructing another building or paving paradise to put up another parking lot. Instead, we asked how we could activate existing spaces to create an ambiance where communities can live, work, play and thrive. A blank wall can become a movie screen. An office terrace unused on the weekends can be filled with yoga mats on Saturday mornings. A mural installation can become a place where residents and visitors stop

and really take stock of the place they’re in. It’s easy to talk the talk, though. Which is why the Partnership is teaming up with Humphrey Consulting and RAD Lab (the guys who brought us Quartyard) to introduce CANVAS. It doesn’t stand for anything — there’s no cutesy acronym — a canvas is a starting place. It’s an invitation to stop and consider; to dream, to create. Thus, Canvas says something about how we view Downtown San Diego. The neighborhoods that make up Downtown are each uniquely equipped with a sense of identity and character, some more developed than others. The goal of Canvas is to improve these neighborhoods by capitalizing on the existing, latent and potential identity and character already present. Canvas seeks to turn spaces, which are easily

Upcoming Events ● ● ● ● Staff and friends enjoy the “Manis and Mimosas” event at Downtown Works in the Columbia District. (Courtesy DSDP)

Feb. 10 — City Center Sessions (workout) Feb. 23 — East Village Movie Event March 10 — Pop-Up Brunch April 21 — East Village Sessions CANVASDowntown FROM PAGE 1


forgettable, into places that are tailor-made to the needs of those who shape each neighborhood. This doesn’t mean neighborhoods have to be turned upside down. Simple changes can generate profound impacts: ● Additional light can make pedestrians feel safer as they travel (and thus more likely to do so). ● Planter boxes can make an urban jungle feel less imposing and more like home. ● Murals and painted utility boxes can turn dull slabs of concrete into opportunities for people to actually enjoy the community they are present in. A vital part of the Canvas program is space activation. Residents and visitors need a reason to stay and play — an opportunity to shape the character that is their neighborhood. Canvas kicked off 2018 by hosting a free “Manis & Mimosas” event, utilizing the premier space at Downtown Works in the Columbia District. Yes, you read that correctly — free manicures and mimosas. We also hosted a trivia and board game night at Mission Brewery in conjunction with Downtown game enthusiasts, Switchboard Games. And you’ll see more of these events throughout the year. Taste new cuisine with friends at a pop-up brunch event in Marina (we know San Diegans like to brunch), or take your kids to see their favorite movie in a cozy, outdoor, urban atmosphere. We don’t want to just talk the talk. We don’t want the dreams and ideas of the 100 community members who joined us last fall to go undeveloped. We don’t want the input of residents who have joined us at our Clean & Safe community mixers to go unheeded. Downtown is a great canvas to start with. We hope the community members, the ones who really shape the identity and character of our neighborhoods, participate with us as we continue to make San Diego America’s Finest City. Follow our Canvas Downtown Facebook page for upcoming events. We’ll see you around. —Lana Harrison is the communications coordinator for the Downtown San Diego Partnership. She can be reached at

employees and developing their talents so we can provide the very best service to our community,” said City Manager Kevin Crawford, in the prepared statement. Why it matters: This is a major change for San Diego. Chadwick had rapidly risen through the ranks of city management. He was focused on the day-to-day operations required of a large government entity and the cultivation of its top managers. He left politics to the mayor and the mayor’s chief of staff. Michell, on the other hand, has been the top political leader at City Hall. She was chief of staff to two mayors. Until now, the COO role seemed reserved for someone committed to bureaucratic management and finances. Michell is more accustomed to managing a mayor’s political priorities and striking deals to make them happen. It’s another sign that the mayor is taking a new path, even if it’s by tapping a veteran of city politics. Background: The mayor of San Diego is the chief executive who oversees almost all its employees. Since the strong mayor form of government came to be in 2006, the COO has managed daily operations while mayors and chiefs of staff have managed the politics and vision for the agency. Chadwick was head of human resources for former Mayor Jerry Sanders and then became interim COO under Mayor Bob Filner. Filner never filled the position. Former County Chief Administration Officer Walt Ekard stepped in as city COO to help and mentor Chadwick. When Filner finally resigned, City Council President Todd Gloria, who had assumed the role of interim mayor, made Chadwick permanent COO. What could happen now: The COO job is one of the few in city management that requires approval of the City Council. Michell has earned plaudits for her work on homelessness when she ran the San Diego Downtown Partnership. She was also part of the deal-making effort to put a measure on the November ballot to raise hotel taxes and pay for an expansion of the Convention Center and homeless services. However, a long career at the top of politics in a major city can leave anyone with baggage and some City Council members or labor groups may rally against her approval. Michell was chief of staff to former Mayor Jerry Sanders and before that to former Mayor Susan Golding, both Republicans. She has long been close to the heart of power in city politics. And she works closely with the current chief of staff to Mayor Faulconer, Aimee Faucett. More: I asked Chadwick if he’d share his resignation letter. He did. “While I would love to spend the rest of my career as Chief Operating Officer, I have been presented with an opportunity that comes along once in a lifetime,” he wrote to Faulconer. Chadwick offered Feb. 21 as his last day but it may come much sooner. —Scott Lewis oversees Voice of San Diego’s operations, website and daily functions as Editor in Chief. He also writes about local politics, where he frequently breaks news and goes back and forth with local political figures. Reach Scott at scott.lewis@ and follow him on Twitter at @vosdscott.v


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


Helping couples break up nicely By Delle Willett Counseling feuding divorcing couples was not Rich Gordon’s first career choice. Neither was living in California. But both turned out to be excellent choices.Born and raised in Rochester, New York, Gordon attended the University of Kansas (KU) from 1963 to 1967, where he played football with the KU Jayhawks and learned the rhythm of Midwestern pacing and values. From KU he went to Rutgers for a master’s degree in Urban Planning. While there, a respected professor recommended that Gordon go to law school, and so he returned to KU, graduating with honors. Although he had daydreamed about being a big-city lawyer, Gordon discovered he preferred being in a small community. After earning his law degree, he worked on the East Coast as a general practitioner in a small firm, doing all types of law.“Basically, I was a country lawyer and took any case that walked in the door: bankruptcies, criminal, real estate, business, and family law. I fought hard for my clients but came to hate being an advocate.

Taking sides just wasn’t in my nature,” he said. As a traditional divorce lawyer, Gordon saw the damage done by in-fighting, animosity, and pettiness; heartsick to see how it impacted children’s lives, parental relations with their kids, and even general family-of-origin dynamics. It became clear to him that battling for position, struggling for victory day in and day out, was taking a toll on him professionally and personally. It was time for a change, and mediation seemed logical, methodical, kinder and gentler. So he dove into extensive mediation training at the University of Connecticut, where he learned to work through the process efficiently and with equanimity. Gordon migrated from the East Coast in hopes of a change in 1998 with his second wife, both believing that a change of scenery would help their own failing marriage. It didn’t. But he stayed around and has been working and living Downtown for nearly a quarter of a century. A pioneer in divorce mediation in San Diego, Gordon opened A Fair Way Mediation Center 20 years ago. He helps

Divorce lawyer and Downtown resident Rich Gordon wrote a chapter in this book.

people in all kinds of marriages divorce each other with speedy and workable settlements, with no attorneys and for a lot less money. These marriages include some of the most complicated, including military, long-distance, and LGBTQ. “Divorce doesn’t have to be the legal and emotional war that society tends to make it out to be,” he said. “It’s entirely possible to have a civil and even amicable marriage dissolution through such recourses as mediation.” And there are lots of marriages that need help. Fifty percent of first marriages and 75 percent of second marriages fail. Infidelity, financial problems, child abuse, and substance or gambling addictions are some of the most common reasons why people divorce. Being a huge believer in marriage, Gordon spends the first half hour of counseling, asking his clients if they are sure about splitting. “I try to get people to reconcile rather than divorce, and it’s tough,” he said. Gordon considers himself the fulcrum in the teeter-totter, as a neutral third party, he balances the opposing sides. Instead, of telling either spouse what to do, he levels the playing field, keeps communications going, brainstorms possibilities, offers options, and guides the divorcing couple to mutually agree on outstanding issues. “I don’t make decisions for them. If they can make choices, people tend to respond to mediation more favorably than advocacy,” he said. “I love what I do because I’m more helpful than I would be as an advocate. And mediation is a lot less costly.” He knows of one couple who spent $1,000,000 on divorce lawyers with no resolution. People in mediation never step foot in the courthouse. They and their negotiations are private and confidential. They meet where they can look at each other eye to eye. And if this is a long-distance divorce, as military often are, Gordon will conduct the mediation process on Skype or Facetime. “With modern technology, we can have a three-way conversation with one spouse in Afghanistan, another in Oceanside and me in my Downtown office,” he said.

Sudoku & Crossword puzzle answers from page 21

(l to r) Georgi and Rich Gordon live a “charmed” life Downtown. (Photos courtesy Rich Gordon)

Gordon, a frequent blogger and radio interviewee, was discovered by an author doing his second volume of “Stress Free Divorce Volume 2 Conversation with Leading Divorce Professionals.” The author asked Gordon to write a chapter for the book, “Helping Couples Break Up Nicely.” The book, available on Amazon, is a compilation of several viewpoints from folks around the country who work in the field of divorce. “The whole point is to avoid advocacy — mediation and collaboration are far more civil and productive.” Gordon has seen hundreds of clients from all economic strata. “Some people love me, and I guess some people equally hate me,” he said. “Divorce, no matter how efficient and calm we try to be, is not fun. Most of our work is well received, but there are those who are too angry to work things out civilly.” For those rare cases, Gordon has a network of lawyers who are prepared to go for the jugular, if necessary. Gordon has also had his own marriage issues. His first two marriages lasted seven years each, ending in divorce. He’s been married to his third wife, Georgi Bohrod, for 11 years. “I really like my wife. I love her, and I really like her,” he said with a big smile. “Third time’s the charm.” Georgi is equally supportive of her husband and his work. “Rich helps people break up nicely,” she said. “His real talent is that he really is warm and congenial and is able to put

his clients at ease. And he has a great sense of humor.” Rich and Georgi love living Downtown for many reasons including being able to walk to work, having a variety of great restaurants and knowing many of the restaurateurs. An avid cyclist, Rich is grateful for San Diego’s numerous bike paths, and not being stuck in traffic. The couple are huge baseball fans. They are especially happy that they can leave a Padres game at the end of the seventh inning and be home at CityFront Terrace before the first pitch of the eighth inning. Proximity to the airport is a huge perk for Georgi who travels extensively on business for GBC and Associates Inc., her homebased boutique branding, marketing, and public relations firm. The Gordons are cat people. Currently, they have Fido, who is imminently calm when she sits on Georgi’s lap during her daily meditation. And Farrah who likes sitting on the balcony, gazing at the view and communicating with the visiting hummingbirds. The Gordons and their “fur babies” make the most of Downtown San Diego and its exceptional environment for living, working and playing. “When I contemplate retirement,” Rich said, “I ask myself, ‘Why?’ I’ve got it all right here, right now.” —Delle Willett has been a marketing and public relations professional for over 30 years, with an emphasis on conservation of the environment. She can be reached at dellewillett@

Journalism interns wanted San Diego Community News Network (SDCNN) is looking for interns for its editorial department. Interns will assist in writing stories and news briefs; compiling calendar items; editing content and layout; and helping out with maintaining the website and social media platforms for all six of the SDCNN publications. This is a fantastic opportunity for students interested in learning all aspects of newspaper production. Interns need to commit to a minimum of eight hours a week – schedule is flexible. This position offers a small stipend and past interns have received college credits and many have gone on to professional positions at publications or communications firms across the country. SDCNN is an equal opportunity employer. Our publications include: San Diego

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

Raising awareness to human trafficking By Dave Schwab

The fifth annual Human Trafficking Awareness Rally, held Jan. 13 at Balboa Park, dragged the ugly crime of sex trafficking out of the shadows and into the light. The rally drew a host of local, federal and state legislators, attorneys, social workers, law enforcement agents and concerned citizens, all bent on educating — and eradicating — human trafficking.Human trafficking includes everything from forcing people into prostitution, to subjecting them to slavery or involuntary servitude. The FBI has named San Diego as one of the nation’s top 13 areas with the highest rates of child sex trafficking. “Over the years we’ve tackled a lot of different issues from domestic violence to illiteracy to child obesity,” said Rachel Thompson, president of Junior League of San Diego. The Junior League is a network of female civic leaders working with community partners to address pressing social issues, and they co-sponsored the human-rights event. Thompson headed a list of speakers at the rally, which

was immediately followed by women hoisting signs with slogans such as, “Not in our city,” and “End modern-day slavery,” and marching through Balboa Park.“About five years ago, we discovered a couple of other unmet needs,” Thompson said. “One was the plight of youth transitioning out of the foster care system, who are disproportionately more likely to become victims of human trafficking. That is how we got started in this work.” Characterizing human trafficking as a “serious epidemic in our community,” Thompson added, “It was a natural fit for us [Junior League] to take this issue and bring it into the light, joining with all our community partners here today. We’re raising our voices, and marching, to spread the word about human trafficking, and making our community more aware of it.” “On Martin Luther King weekend, we are reminded of the fight for justice and equality, and how important this effort [opposing trafficking] is,” said Rep. Susan Davis, a Democrat who represents District 53. “I’m always shocked that there are between 8,000 and 11,000

victims of human trafficking right here in San Diego. What can we do, what can our workplaces do, what can people do?” Davis asked rhetorically. The Congress member cited teachers as one occupation that needs to be more aware of sex trafficking. “One of the things we focus on is empowering our teachers to learn and know the signs,” Davis said. “They might be looking at a young woman in their classroom every day. She

gets to school late every day, especially after the weekend. She looks like she’s really tired. But they are actually suffering because they’re being trafficked.” Davis concluded money is essential to fighting sex trafficking. “People need to have the resources to do something about it,” she said. San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan sent a message that “each one of us needs to care about exploited and enslaved people. … The time

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789 West Harbor Drive San Diego CA 92101 is really now to stand up and to stamp out exploitation and slavery.” Noting that human traffickers are “hiding in plain view, hiding behind phones and posing as friends,” the district attorney said there are many “diabolical methods” used by traffickers to recruit their victims. “Right now, there is someone in some hotel in San Diego being sold like they were a piece of pizza,” Stephan said. “There’s a woman trying to put food on the table as a janitor who is being sexually abused; but she’s afraid to tell someone because she doesn’t have all the right immigration papers. There are boys being abused on camera and sold to pornographers. As long as those exist — our fight must continue.” Assemblymember Brian Maienschein, who was also on hand, shared that he is a single parent with two daughters ages 13 and 15. “I tucked them in last night and one of them had a stuffed animal she was sleeping with in bed,” he said. “Girls of that age are being trafficked. It’s an American tragedy, and it has to stop.” Maienschein has sponsored AB 1791, which strengthens penalties for human trafficking crimes involving minors. Jamie Quient, president of Free to Thrive — an organization that empowers survivors of human trafficking by providing them with legal services and connecting them to other supportive services — talked about clearing victims’ arrest records. “Survivors of trafficking shouldn’t forever be degraded by being labeled as criminals,” Quient said, who also described the victims of trafficking as “the most driven people I’ve ever met.” Quient said that when she asks most reclaimed trafficking victims what they’d most like to do, they say they wish to use their personal experience to help other victims. Ex-Marine Joseph Travers, executive director of Saved in America — a nonprofit involving insured private investigators who locate missing and runaway children — said the objective of combating sex trafficking is to catch violators, and their potential victims, early.“We’re trying to prevent runaways from getting caught in sex trafficking, and we’ve rescued 57 of them since 2014,” Travers said. “Out of the 57 rescues, 40 percent of them were actually involved in trafficking in one form or another.” Travers talked about one trafficking victim, Brittany, who didn’t make it out. “A gang member pimp befriended her and took her across state lines where he raped and murdered her,” Travers said. “What we want to do here today, with you and I as partners, is to make sure that never happens again.” If you see something, say something. To get involved with the nonprofits mentioned in this story, visit, or —Reach Dave Schwab at



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Downtown News




‘The Color of Light’

Based on Henri Matisse’s spiritual romance with a young nun, this new play tells the fascinating story behind the creation of his final masterpiece, “Chapelle du Rosaire de Vence.” “The Color of Light” follows the relationship after the brilliant artist, an atheist, recovers from cancer and is cared for by Sister Jacques Marie. Vantage Theatre's production combines an art experience with theater, with a pre-show art exhibit and talk about Matisse, art, color and form, and the religious life. See it live at San Diego’s Tenth Avenue Arts Center, 930 10th Ave. Shows start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15, available at bit. ly/2Cc3VSe.




Chinese New Year Festival

Celebrate the Year of the Dog at this fun weekend-long event, honoring the Chinese New Year. Hosted by The House of China and the House of Pacific Relations International Cottages. Highlights of the event include a lion dance, kung-fu demonstrations, a dragon dance, red envelope, dumplings, bao, a fashion show, and Chinese ethnic performances. Free. 11 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday, 11 a.m.– 4 p.m. House of China, 668 Pan American Road, Balboa Park.

‘The Color of Light’

Based on Henri Matisse’s spiritual romance with a young nun, this new play tells the fascinating story behind the creation of his final

masterpiece, “Chapelle du Ro- Fueled by such unforgetta- scene in 1967 as the queen of saire de Vence.” “The Color ble songs as “Me and Bobby rock and roll. Experience a of Light” follows the relation- McGee,” “Piece of My Heart,” tribute to the must-see headship after the brilliant artist, “Mercedes Benz,” “Cry Baby,” liner in the hit musical that an atheist, recovers from can- and “Summertime,” this sen- includes a live on-stage band, cer and is cared for by Sister sational show is a musical A Night with Janis Joplin. Jacques Marie. Vantage The- journey celebrating Joplin Fueled by such unforgettaatre's production combines an and her biggest musical in- ble songs as “Me and Bobby art experience with theater, fluences — icons like Aretha McGee,” “Piece of My Heart,” with a pre-show art exhibit Franklin, Etta James, Odet- “Mercedes Benz,” “Cry Baby,” and talk about Matisse, art, ta, Nina Simone, and Bes- and “Summertime,” this sencolor and form, and the reli- sie Smith, who inspired one sational show is a musical gious life. See it live at San of rock and roll’s greatest journey celebrating Joplin Diego’s Tenth Avenue Arts legends. and her biggest musical inCenter, 930 10th Ave. 8 p.m. Historic Balboa The- fluences — icons like Aretha Shows start at 8 p.m. Tick- atre, 868 Fourth Ave., Down- Franklin, Etta James, Odetets are $15, available at bit. town. ta, Nina Simone, and Besly/2Cc3VSe. sie Smith, who inspired one of rock and roll’s greatest THURSDAY legends. SUNDAY 8 p.m. Historic Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown.



Super Sunday Party

Watch the Super Bowl with your friends at the Super Sunday Party @ The LOT in Liberty Station. Lots of food and drinks, including an all-youcan-eat tailgate party (buffet open 2–5 p.m.). Big screens and even bigger screens available for your viewing pleasure. Seating available in restaurant, bar, patios or even the auditoriums. Inside seating is on a fi rst-come, fi rst-served basis. Buffet does not include drinks. The LOT, 2620 Truxtun Road, Liberty Station. bit. ly/2EbetCM



A Night with Janis Joplin


San Diego is invited to share an evening celebrating the woman with the unmistakable voice and raw emotion who exploded onto the music scene in 1967 as the queen of rock and roll. Experience a tribute to the must-see headliner in the hit musical that includes a live on-stage band, A Night with Janis Joplin.




Art Soup at Bread & Salt

Hosted by the San Diego Diplomacy Council and sponsored by U.S. Department of State, Alta Brewing Company, and Tonight In San Diego production company, this event adds Slovenian photography, a dash of Tanzanian guitar, a splash of Indian drama, a pinch of Algerian rap, and a handful of local performers for a night of global artistry. This troupe of artists will be traveling through San Diego on their multi-city tour “Promoting Social Change through the Arts.” Local performers will also take the stage. Founded by Chris Rubio, a veteran performer and former rehearsal director of the off-Broadway production “Stomp,” Crew Percussion is a high energy motivational group that utilizes everyday objects to make percussive sounds, sharing their energy and positive message with over a thousand schools in San Diego. At the end of the show, #OsloSardineBar will be open for business. Full event times are 5–8 p.m.; from 5–6 p.m., Alta Brewing will be offering $1 off all beer and $1.50 tacos from Tacos by Adriana and event doors open at 6 p.m. $10 donation. For more information, contact Natalie@sandiegodiplomacy. org. Bread & Salt, 1955 Julian Ave., Sherman Heights.

A Night with Janis Joplin

San Diego is invited to share an evening celebrating the woman with the unmistakable voice and raw emotion who exploded onto the music



most romantic and love-filled works of art, available exclusively on Feb 14. Following the tour, visit the May S. Marcy Sculpture Court and Garden at Panama 66 and enjoy a gourmet picnic basket for two. Relax in the sculpture garden under the California Tower and amongst the museum’s sculptures, a truly romantic setting on such a romantic day. Tours offered in half-hour time slots from 5:30–8 p.m. Choose your preferred tour time and the picnic will be enjoyed after your tour time. Tour times and picnic basket options available at link provided. Price per couple: $125 non-members, $110 for members. 5:30–9 p.m. San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park. bit. ly/2n5VyBt






Salsa Under the Stars

Dance the night away with Manny Cepeda and his orchestra in our beautiful outdoor courtyard from 6–9 p.m. No partner or experience necessary for this free event. 6–9 p.m. The Headquarters Seaport, 789 W. Harbor Drive, Marina District, Downtown.



Outdoor Movie — ‘Bonnie and Clyde’

Bring your valentine for an outdoor screening of “Bonnie and Clyde” in the Headquarters’ outdoor courtyard. The former San Diego Police headquarters makes the perfect venue to watch this 1967 love and crime classic featuring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway. Free admission, all you need to bring is blankets and chairs, a few friends or that special someone. 6–9 p.m. The Headquarters Seaport, 789 W. Harbor Drive, Marina District, Downtown.

Valentine’s Day romantic tour and garden picnic

Embrace romance with an after-hours, love-themed art tour of the Museum of Art’s

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Be Bold! Pop Up Art Show

Bold Women. Bold Color. Bold Art. Join the Adelman sisters as they celebrate a stunning, bold collection from four San Diego artists, including Ellen Dieter, Misun Holdorf, Katya Saab, and Monique Straub. RSVP at 7–9 p.m. Adelman Fine Art, 1980 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy. bit. ly/2Frk9bz

American foods like baking powder biscuits, cakes, cookies, and quick breads. It also spawned a series of vicious trade wars that continued for nearly a century and involved the USDA’s Poison Squad, the U.S. Supreme Court and the legislature of almost every state and territory. And baking powder fortunes left legacies in some most unusual places. A tasting of historic 18th-century gingerbread made with heirloom flour will follow the presentation. Free and open to the public. 10:30 a.m. Neil Morgan Auditorium, Downtown Central Library, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. bit. ly/2DAl88N



Baja Wine Tour

Join Baja Wine Tour for a Cause for their first organized day trip to the wineries of Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico. They partner with community organizations to help further their causes. $120 includes round-trip transportation from San Diego, a traditional Mexican breakfast buffet at a Hacienda, three winery stops with tastings, one sampling of artisan cheese/ bread/jams/dressings, and a lobster dinner in Puerto Nuevo before returning home across the border. Valid passports required for everyone aboard the charter bus in accordance with Mexico and U.S. travel laws. Plan ahead and ensure you have all travel documents. 6 a.m.–9 p.m. Meet up at 6 a.m. at the Park and Ride located under the Interstate 805 freeway near the state Route 54 interchange. Bus departs at 6:30 a.m. sharp. To RSVP and pay for your seat, visit PresDayWknd.

Presentation – ‘The Baking Powder Wars’

Culinary Historians of San Diego will present “Battle Royal: The Baking Powder Wars 1856-1950,” featuring noted culinary historian Linda Civitello. Author of “Baking Powder Wars: The Cutthroat Food Fight That Revolutionized Cooking,” Civitello will describe how baking powder, an American invention, revolutionized baking and created uniquely


2nd annual Women in Leadership reception

Presented by the Women’s Museum of California and hosted by Mister A’s Restaurant, enjoy tray-passed hors d’oeuvres, and refreshments while hearing various powerful speakers and Sen. Toni G. Atkins honor Adama Iwu, who exposed a culture of inequality at the California state Capitol and one of Time Magazine’s “Silence Breakers.” Valet parking $12; street parking availanle. 6–9 p.m. Mister A’s is located on 12th floor, 2550 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Tickets bit. ly/2n80DKj

ABBA Mania

The world’s No. 1 touring ABBA production, featuring a special concert presentation, which celebrates the music of ABBA in a respectful and enjoyable way, reviving special memories of when ABBA ruled the airwaves. ABBA Mania brings ABBA fans old and new a night to party, reminisce, or simply be entertained by great music. Join in and enjoy all of your favorites including: “Mamma Mia,” “Voulez Vous,” “Dancing Queen,” “Winner Takes It All,” “Super Trouper,” and many more. Dig out those platforms, dust down those flares and thank ABBA for the music. 7:30 p.m. Historic Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. bit. ly/2DVvmnn




San Diego County Young Democrats Mixer

Join the SDCYD for a night of tacos and drinks with food by the folks at Salud San Diego and drink service provided by Snake Oil Cocktail Company. The first 100 people with California Young Democrats Convention Credentials will get a free drink token. Full program to come. For sponsorship opportunities visit 8–10 p.m. Sparks Gallery, 530 Sixth Ave., Downtown. bit. ly/2n6xhfv v


San Diego Downtown News | February 2018


Fashion Files Diana Cavagnaro The Wedding Pairing collection

Debi Lilly is a celebrity floral designer and event planner, who was in town to launch her 2018 spring/summer collection Jan. 10 and 11. This Wedding Pairing collection is available exclusively at Vons and Albertsons. The collection is more affordable and uses the latest designs. They have a florist on hand to help you with your special occasions. Lilly works designing one year in advance and six months ahead of time for production. I asked Lilly how she came up with all her ideas. She said she gets her inspiration by keeping up with the latest fashions and designs and was leaving for Paris the next day for one the biggest design shows in the world, named Maison & Objet. They have trends on home décor, interior design, architecture and lifestyle culture. Another inspiration, Lilly said, is the influence of the Pantone color of the year. Last year, the Pantone color was “greenery,” symbolizing a reconnection with nature. This year, the greenery has spilled over and you can still see traces used in the color schemes. The 2018 Pantone color is “ultra violet,” directing us to be inventive and imaginative. There is already a burst of lavender colors in the use of floral arrangements. Lilly said that there are two other trends right now; one is to get married on 8-1818 (Aug. 18, 2018); the other trend is hygge, which is the Scandinavian word for cozy. It is a white clean look with grey and beige colors. They also use succulents and houseplants with mixed metals and rose golds. Originally from the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago, Lilly was a party and event planner before working with Oprah, Martha Stewart and Lady Gaga. Currently she is working and designing for Vons and Albertsons. They have over 500 products such as candles, décor and gifts.

Models shown wearing current trends in bridal wear at the bridal bizaar (Photos by Diana Cavagnaro) way for brides to see what styles they liked for their wedding. The show began with music from Classic Brass. Models came down the runway in the latest styles and trends including bridesmaid’s dresses, flower girl, ring bearer and men’s fashions. Some of the trends in bridal fashion were very sheer fabrics, off-the-shoulder or strapless gowns, and colors of canary yellow, burgundy, and shades of blue. These colors were not only seen with the bridesmaid’s dresses but also with tuxedos and bowties for the men. After the fashion show, the audience went wild when models tossed rice sachets to them worth thousands of dollars in prizes. If you are planning an upcoming wedding, the next Spring Bridal Bazaar will be on Sunday, April 29 at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. For more information, visit

(left) An example of “greenery,” Pantone's 2017 color of the year; (center) Debi Lilly; and ultra violet, 2018 color of the year (right) (Courtesy Debi Lilly)

Upcoming events

●● Feb. 2–3 | Trunk

Show and Demonstration — Presented by Master Dyer & Weaver, Porfirio Gutierrez from 10 a.m.–5 p.m. at the Mingei International Museum in Balboa Park. For more information, visit ●● Feb. 9 | Valentine’s Fashion Show — McKensie Rae with exclusive brand Mac Duggal. The event is located at 643 G St., Downtown, and begins at 6:30 p.m. Free gift bags

fashion show is presented by Soroptimist International of San Diego. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sheraton Harbor Island Hotel Bay Tower. For more information, visit —Diana Cavagnaro is an internationally renowned couture milliner based in the Historic Gaslamp Quarter. Learn more about our hat designer, teacher and blogger at



February is the month where love is in the air, but it doesn’t just have to be about Valentine’s Day flowers and candy. This month, whether you’re focused on keeping that New Year’s resolution or preparing for spring cleaning, don’t overlook the technology in your home. From personalized apps and free on demand through Contour, or free nationwide hotspots available through Cox High Speed Internet, give yourself and your family the gift of health, time and savings. Netflix Integration. Now you can access your Netflix account from your Contour TV service without the fuss of switching inputs or signing in to your account. Contour now includes a Netflix app, so just say “Netflix” into your Contour remote and you’ll be able to access the available movie and show titles. If you’re already a Netflix subscriber, get started now—there are no additional charges.

Bridal Bazaar

The Bridal Bazaar returned to the San Diego Convention Center on Jan. 14, giving a one-stop shopping day for all the prospective brides and grooms. Vendors were there to help them with their special occasion. Need more ideas or options? This is where you can find it. There were photographers, videographers, florists, musicians, caterers, honeymoon planners, and of course the very important bridal gowns and tuxedos. There were many booths with beautiful wedding gowns such as Kenneth Barlis, The Bustle, and Bridal and Tuxedo Galleria. More fashions could be seen during the three fashion shows presented by Gretchen Productions. She combined dance, theater and fashion for this entertaining runway show. It was a great

for the first 20 guests. RSVP at ●● March 3–June 26 | Fashion Redux — Ninety years of fashion exhibitions at the San Diego History Center in Balboa Park. Showcases local students from San Diego Mesa College with a fashion show on April 26 and lecture by Susan Lazear. For more information, visit ●● March 10 | ‘Open Hearts, Helping Hands’ — This awards luncheon and

Music Choice. No need to download songs or search through playlists. Choose from 100 Music Choice stations on Contour for the perfect soundtrack to your day.

Personalized Weather, News and Traffic Apps. Before heading out for that commute to work, check traffic, local weather, and more with the click of a button on the Contour remote control. Apps are launched on the TV screen without interrupting your current show. On Demand Entertainment. Access more than 70,000 movies, TV shows and children’s programming instantly on Contour, as well as a free on demand category. Plus, take advantage of on-screen Rotten Tomatoes and Flixster ratings to help you decide what to watch. Simply say “On Demand” into your new Contour remote and your options will pop up on screen. And if your New Year’s resolution is to get fit in 2018, try the yoga, Pilates and other exercise videos in the free on demand library.

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San Diego Downtown News | February 2018

Congratulations TOP AGENTS 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18.

Gregg Neuman Chad Dannecker Francine Finn Michael Lange Michael Ciampa Denny Oh Gerry Burchard Franchesca Meram Michael Chious John Husar Ryan Ponce Alan Hamrick Deborah Herscovitz David Stone Jamie Pullman John Reeves Jason Cassity Rebecca Roman

Total Sales by Real Estate Agent in 2017

in 92101

120 39 21 21 20 18 13 13 13 12 12 11 11 9 9 8 8 8

19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36.

Michael Althof David Spiewak Melissa Goldstein Tucci Todd DeBoer Ann LeBaron Pablo Martinez Robert Whalen Nicole Malek Mark Mills Kayoko Yoshioka Claudette Cooper Richard Combs Daniel Beer Pete Thistle Robert Weichelt Lisa Padilla Jeffrey Sill Parashos Hedda

(Incl. buyer sales and listings sold, January 1 - December 31, 2017)

8 7 7 7 7 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 5

37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54.

Prem Advani Joe Marcotte Jorge Castellon Bryant Katzen Brian Alvarado Cameron Abbott Tyler Martin Jamie Hopkins Lon Woodard Dennis Kuhn Trudy Stambook Keke Jones Janna Hernholm Gonzalo Vidano Laura Ochoa Cindy Aronstam Lewis Breeze Matthew Forness

REAL Marketing, Inc. Congratulates the Top Downtown San Diego Real Estate Agents in 2017! REAL Marketing Inc. has helped real estate agents build their market share and client retention for more than 26 years across North America, specializing in increasing market share and improving customer

5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4

55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. 61. 62. 63. 64. 65. 66. 67. 68. 69. 70.

TOP 25

Kathy Rolfo Sabrina Ortega Becky Wissbaum Jorge Verdugo Matthew Matson Ken Baer Clinton Selfridge Petra Korbel Gregory Burnham Tamara Markey Thomas Holmes Linda Pasas Lucas Hanson Erica Bocian Jennifer Balanay 68 Agents Tied With

4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 3

in 92101

Total Sales by Company 1. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices


retention. We are pleased to announce our team has helped Gregg Neuman and the Neuman & Neuman Team extend their lead in Downtown sales for the EIGHTH consecutive year.

2. Pacific Sotheby’s Int’l Realty


3. Welcome To San Diego Real Estate


4. Coldwell Banker Residential


5. Redfin Corporation


Results for 2017

6. Willis Allen


7. Big Block Realty


8. Bennion Deville Homes


9. Centre City Properties


10.Canter Brokerage


11.Keller Williams SD Metro


12.Hunter & Maddox Int’l Inc.


13.Ascent RE


14.The Condo Showroom


15.Century 21 Award


16.92101 Urban Living


17.Keller Williams Realty Carmel Valley


18.Urban Pacific San Diego Realty


19.Coldwell Banker West


20.I Sell The City Real Estate


21.Downtown Condo Guys, Inc.


22.Avenu Realty Group


23.Scofield Realty, Inc.


24.Keller Williams Realty


25.Dwell Well Realty


Total sales for the 92101 zip code decreased to 878 units last year, which is a 9.2% decrease from 2016. The average sales price rose to $649,781 showing a 5.9% gain, while the average days on market have increased by 7.5% to 40 days. Gregg Neuman of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties tops the list for an EIGHTH consecutive year with 120 total 92101 sales. While his sales represent 55% of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties’ sales in Downtown, he continues to outsell entire brokerages including Coldwell Banker Residential, Willis Allen,

Welcome to San Diego Real Estate, Redfin Corporation, Big Block Realty, and Bennion Deville Homes. With a total of 216 sales according to data available from Trendgraphix, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties finished another strong year and also sustains their lead over all other Downtown brokerages. Congratulations to all Top Real Estate agents in Downtown San Diego for another outstanding year.

REAL Marketing, Inc. is a marketing company dedicated to promoting real estate agents and their businesses. Gregg Neuman is the team leader of Neuman & Neuman Real Estate, Inc. a team of more than two real estate agents working together for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties and the data above under Gregg Neuman includes all transactions closed by the Neuman & Neuman team. Many of the agents featured in this ad are also teams or sole practitioners. All information above was based upon data available at the end of December 2017, for January 1 through December 31, 2017. The information is based upon data supplied by Sandicor MLS and includes all transactions reported under the agents named above. Neither Sandicor nor the MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data maintained by Sandicor or their MLS may not reflect all real estate activities in the market. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Copyright © Trendgraphix, Inc. ©2018 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties is a member of the franchise system of BHH Affiliates LLC. CalBRE 01317331

San Diego Downtown News February 2018  
San Diego Downtown News February 2018