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Journal PLUS MARCH 2012



Twila Arritt


Serving the entire SLO County since 1978


Development Potential in SLO!

Cindy Newton

Pamela Bliss



Rhodes R ancho, 2.77 Acres with development potential in San Luis Obispo. Anyone interested in this property should speak to the city planning and utility departments. Price is based on appraisal. $845,000

Sweet 2 BR Bungalow & Separate Studio close to Cal Poly. Must see! 2 BR Bungalow: w/ lots of character, Hardwood Floors, Laundry Room. Studio: Stylish Concrete Counters, Light & Bright. Separate Private Fenced Yards for ea. unit. Both in Excellent condition. $535,000

Patricia Garrison

Vicky Hall

Four bed room, two bath home close to shopping, restaurants, and transportation. Easy maintenance front yard. Great investment property or first time home buyer. Sold AS IS. $354,500

Near Downtown SLO in a Peachy Location + Potential! Small two bedroom, one bath home located on a R-2 zoned lot. Opportunity knocks for a future investment/income or a dream cottage. $365,000



Larry D. Smyth

Jennifer Hamilton

Kelly Hannula

Janet Shaner


Relocation Director




Stephanie Hamilton

Laura Rizzoli

Mary Rosenthal





Theresa Carroll

Annette Mullen

This lot is located on the east side of Nutmeg Avenue. Panoramic ocean views with beautiful central coast sunsets. Lot is rectangular in shape approx 4000 square feet in size. Approx. 280 feet above mean sea level. For more info call our AG office at 904-6616 $309,000

3/2 mobile home, only 1.2 miles to Oceano Beach, almost 1300sqft. Clubhouse, pool & park! Bring the toys & enjoy this fully furnished home. ALL AGE PARK! $99,900

Conveniently located in the heart of SLO & the Village of Arroyo Grande 21 Santa Rosa Street, Suite 100, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405 102 E. Branch Street, Suites C & D, Arroyo Grande, CA 93420

Chris Stanley REALTOR®

Christine Williams REALTOR®


n this era of corporate crime and personal greed, who can you trust with your financial future?

An ethical local firm with a 50-year track record

It is indeed a pleasure to be writing this letter as a testimony for an excellent individual and dear friend Al Moriarty, owner of Moriarty Enterprises. I first met Al when I was a student at Cal Poly in 1965. I tried out for football under the encouragement of Coach Vic Bucola. I was pretty young back then and competed for the middle line backer position. Al attended some of our practice games and I was impressed by his support of the Cal Poly booster program. He encouraged me to never give up and I continue to take his good advice today. Al has always had a great ability to help others. My tenure in football didn’t last long, but the friendship that has developed between Al and I is “priceless.” Beyond his expertise as a professional and progressive individual, Al is also an awesome people person. He has supported and encouraged me through some really tough times. I have been in Education now for almost 30 years. I coached football, baseball, basketball, taught FFA, a dozen different subjects and even took five years off to be a service manager for Quinn Caterpillar. No matter where I was in my life, I could pick up a phone and call Al for advice. He is a very wonderful man, and his advice, integrity, and willingness to help has literally kept me out of harms way. If I had one person to trust my life with, it would be Al. He is a great listener and has always been a great financial advisor and trusting friend for more than 40 years. When I was the CTA president, someone jokingly said, “Hey Jeff you’re always telling us that you’re going to win the lotto someday! What would you do with all that money?” Without a hesitation I said, “I’d call Al Moriarty, he’s the best there is!” I still know and believe that, I love the man, and his family. He is a blessing for me and my own family. Richard (Jeff) Jeffery West Hills Community College Work Experience Coordinator & Vocational Counselor


"Integrity, as in nature, will always be supreme"

efore you make another major financial decision, call for a no-obligation appointment to evaluate your resources and goals.



ENTERPRISES Financial Services since 1954

P.O. Box 970, Grover Beach, CA 93483

Phone: (805) 481-4990 Lic. No. 0144566

Al Moriarty Financial Advisor



The People, Community, and Business of Our Beautiful Central Coast ADDRESS

654 Osos Street San Luis Obispo California 93401








ADVERTISING Jan Owens CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Susan Stewart, Natasha Dalton, Hilary Grant, Joseph Carotenuti, Dr. Julian Crocker, Sarah Hedger, Maggie Cox, Deborah Cash, Ron Cogan, John Ashbaugh, Will Jones, Robert Pavlik, Bob Huttle, Gordon Fuglie, and Phyllis Benson Mail subscriptions are available at $20 per year. Back issues are $2 each. Inquires concerning advertising or other information made by writing to Steve Owens, JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE, 654 Osos Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401. You can call us at 546-0609, our fax line is 546-8827, and our e-mail is View the entire magazine on our website at JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE is distributed monthly free by mail to all single family households of San Luis Obispo and is available free at over 600 locations throughout the county. Editorial submissions are welcome but are published at the discretion of the publisher. Submissions will be returned if accompanied by a stamped self addressed envelope. No material published in the magazine can be reproduced without written permission. Opinions expressed in the byline articles are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the JOURNAL PLUS MAGAZINE. Cover photo by Will Jones

PEOPLE 10 12 14 16 18


HOME & OUTDOOR 20 22 23 24 26


COMMUNITY 28 32 34 36 41 46

THE SINSHEIMER BUILDING HISTORY: Chauncey Hatch Phillips – part 1 HOSPICE CORNER / CROSSWORD PUZZLE PALM STREET – Councilman John Ashbaugh OUR SCHOOLS – Dr. Julian Crocker ALMANAC – The Month of March






Journal PLUS

A proud tradition of serving our community for over 26 years

CAYUCOS – New Construction in numbered

streets with coastal access at the end of the block. Two master suites with high ceilings, lush carpet, travertine tile and coastal views. Natural birch cabinetry, granite countertops and oversized Andersen windows allow incredible natural light throughout this custom home. Copper rain gutters and green features. Move-in ready with thoughtful design, exceptional craftsmanship and numerous amenities. $839,000 #2944

ATASCADERO – Home on the Range? This

one is not too big, not too small. Large 4 bedroom, 2 bath home, approximately 2400+ square feet. Detached barn included. Bring the animals and the family. Peaceful, usable 2.5 acres of land, minutes from town. $459,000 #2956

TEMPLETON – Exquisite custom home on over an

acre in desirable Spanish Lakes gated community. 4 bedroom, 3 bath home features an open floor plan, top of the line finishes throughout, gourmet kitchen, 3 fireplaces, and luxurious master suite. Guest suite features private entrance and kitchenette perfect for in-laws or a nanny. Professionally landscaped grounds, custom stained concrete driveway and walkways, and oak studded views. $849,900 #2955

NIPOMO – 1 acre ranch-style home with guest

Clean Living NIPOMO – Exceptional quality of construction

and materials used. Completed in 2006 this home is single level and complemented with gorgeous distressed cherry wood floors, alder cabinets throughout, granite counter tops, Travertine tile in bathrooms, stainless steel appliances. Very private with huge front and back yards and your own private driveway. There is a guest house that can be used as a workshop or artist’s studio. Secluded interior patio with hot tub. Lots of green features including solar panels, water filtration system, and organic soil throughout property. There are producing fruit trees, citrus, avocado & plum! $419,000 #2942

Great Investment Opportunity SAN LUIS OBISPO – Or use as your primary residence. Fantastic location at the base of Bishop’s Peak for this 4 bedroom, 2 bath home. Recently painted, updated flooring and bathrooms, new retaining wall, large bedrooms, oversized corner lot, wonderful views and more! $539,000 #2958

house. This 4 bedroom, 3 bath approx. 2,748 sf home has wood vaulted ceiling with sky lights for a bright large living room, super nice kitchen with oak cabinets, bar and built-in barbecue. Great for entertaining! Oversized 2-car garage, RV parking, fenced area for horses and a dog kennel. The detached 1 bedroom, 1 bath guest house includes full kitchen and its own laundry room, plus a 2-car garage. Plenty of space for everyone! $549,000 #2954

TEMPLETON – REO in Creekside Ranch! Hurry – don’t wait! This 3 bed, 2 bath home is located just north of downtown Templeton and convenient to the 101. Open floor plan, spacious feel, and backyard perfect for entertaining guests. With a divide for animals or just to keep things separate, it is functional for any event. $285,000 #2943

SAN LUIS OBISPO – Single level home, approximately 3800 sf. with 4 bedrooms – one currently used as an office. Media/family room w/ fireplace & wet bar. Master suite offers balcony, walk-in closet & fireplace. Beautiful entertaining balcony off the kitchen, and backyard features flagstone stairs & lush landscape to the top of the lot. Private seating area w/heat & outside speakers to watch spectacular sunsets over the city & mountains. $850,000 #2961

For more information on these and other Real Estate Group of SLO listings call us at


962 Mill Street • San Luis Obispo, California 93401 •

Family and Cosmetic Dentistry

From the publisher


ast month’s story on saving the California Giant Redwoods caused plenty of positive feedback from our readers. We thank you for your comments. One of our readers, California Department of Transportation’s Historian, Robert Pavlik, submitted a follow-up story on how Phoebe Hearst was one who championed the Redwoods as well. You’ll enjoy his story. We were also pleased that the California Department of Veterans Affairs contacted us to help inform our local Vets on benefits available to them. Go to page 23 for more information.

“A smile happens in a flash, but its memory can last a lifetime.” We want to keep your smile memorable and bright this new year. Call our office today to set up your appointment.

ph 805.541.5800 567 Marsh Street San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

New patients welcome! New additional hygiene hours now available

There are several good profiles again this month including: Our cover story on San Luis Obispo’s Superintendent of Schools, Eric Prater; Winemaker, Steve Autry; Musician and Composer, Danny Pelfrey; the SLO Rotaract Club; and SLO High School graduates, Amar and Jessica Sohi who recently received Holiday Inn’s highest honor. Finally we feature the comeback of the historic Sinsheimer Building. We write about it from three different angles: The owner’s perspective, the contractor and the City’s Retrofit coordinator. A job well done by all.

Enjoy the magazine,

Steve Owens

UPCOMING EVENTS Now view our printed calendar of events entirely online. Visit our website today and find your way to the best seats in the house.

W W W . P A C S L O . O R G March 8-9, 7:30 pm March 10, 3 pm CP Student Opera Theatre

Sat., March 17, 8 pm John McCutcheon

Thurs., March 1, 7:30 pm Red Star Red Army Chorus & Dance Ensemble

Thurs., March 8, 7:30 pm The Second City Cal Poly Arts

Wed., March 21, 7:30 pm Savion Glover: Bare Soundz

Fri., March 2, 8 pm CP Wind Band Masterworks - The American Dream

Fri., March 9, 8 pm George Kahumoku, Jr. - Masters of Hawaiian Music

Thurs., March 22, 7:30 pm SFJazz Collective: Plays the Music of Stevie Wonder

March 1-3, 8 pm A Streetcar Named Desire CP Theatre & Dance

CP Music Department

Cal Poly Arts

CP Music Department

Sat., March 3, 8 pm Cal Poly Just Jazz Concert CP Music Department

Cal Poly Arts

Sat., March 10, 8 pm CP Arab Music Ensemble Winter Concert CP Music Department

Cal Poly Arts & San Luis Obispo Folk Music Society

Cal Poly Arts

Cal Poly Arts

Sat., March 24, 7 pm Sun., March 25, 2 pm Love...Dance... Shine

CORE Dance Company

Sun., March 4, 3 pm CP Symphony Winter Concert Student Soloists

Sat., March 10, 8 pm SLO Symphony: Classical Sketches

CP Music Department

San Luis Obispo Symphony

Sat., March 24, 8 pm Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood

Tues., March 6, 7:30 pm The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Sun., March 11, 3 pm An Afternoon With Rex Reed

Sun., March 25, 3 pm Apex for Kids Family Concert Peter and the Wolf

Cal Poly Arts

Wed., March 7, 7:30 pm The Concordia Choir

SLO High School & Performing Arts Center

Phone: 805.756.2787 Fax: 805.756.6088

Cal Poly Arts

Fri., March 16, 8 pm Sat., March 18, 2 pm Alice in Wonderland

Civic Ballet of SLO

Rotary Club of San Luis Obispo de Tolosa

SLO Symphony

Thurs., March 29, 7:30 pm Aquila Theatre Company: Macbeth

Cal Poly Arts

A Vision for building our cApAcit y to cAre

Community Celebration & DeDiCation WednesdAy, MArch 7, 2012 At 11 A.M. An open house and tours of the hospital will immediately follow the ceremony.

marian regional meDiCal Center New. ANd AlwAys will be. - Advanced technology

- comprehensive cancer care

- private patient rooms

- state-of-the-Ar t cardiac ser vices

- e xpanded newborn icu

- e xpanded emergenc y ser vices

- expanded critical care services

- superior imaging ser vices

AdditionAl public tours sAturdAy, MArch 10

sundAy, MArch 11

9:0 0 a.m. to 2:0 0 p.m.

12:0 0 p.m. to 3:0 0 p.m.

Reservations recommended. Please call 805 -739-3105.



Steve autry

profile of an artisan winemaker By Ron Cogan


lame it on a bottle of Zinfandel. It was an epiphany while drinking a lusty Zin nearly three decades ago that made Steve Autry realize wine could be truly spectacular. A dreamer, he promised himself he would one day make such a wine. A man with a serious scientific bent and a background at places like Hughes Aircraft, he was no winemaker. But then, the secret to great winemaking is rooted in science as much as it is in passion. Lots of science, as it turns out. We know, because watching Autry make wine often enough involves a quick session with a calculator, notepad, scientific instruments, scales, chemicals, and beakers. Add passion to the mix—plus the intuitive sense and finelytuned palate required to create great wine—and you have a powerful formula for success.

The gold ribbons lined up in Autry Cellars’ tasting room bears this out. His wines have done exceptionally well in competitions, as they should. His Malbec is sensational. The Tempranillo outstanding. And the Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc are favorites. Not content with doing anything as expected, Autry’s Chardonnay, one of the two whites he produces, can best be described as a white wine for red wine drinkers. It’s bolder than one would expect, in part because he leaves the skins on for a full day after crush to gather their nuances… and of course in part because his aim is to make it his own way.

Autry Cellars’ tasting room M A R C H


Journal PLUS

Autry Cellars’ tasting room is friendly and inviting. A rotating selection of 12 varietals are poured, including the aforementioned wines plus Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, Petite Syrah, and Pinot Noir. Now, Autry also sells his new exclusive offering, Autry Cellars Brandy, although inexplicably state regulations do not allow tasting brandy at wineries so this is sold but not poured. Tasting is offered at nominal cost seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. One of the benefits of visiting a boutique winery is the opportunity to interact with the owner or winemaker. Autry is both, and often he’s the one pouring in the tasting room. Here, visitors learn the intricacies of each varietal, what makes them special, and how they came to be the way they are…amid vistas of vineyards, Islay Peak, and the Santa Lucia Mountains in the distance. Visitors get an intimate sense of the winemaking process as all the tools of the trade—tanks, barrels, press, crusher, de-stemmer, labeler, and bottling equipment—are readily in view past the door of the tasting room. Autry personally works all these machines, and more, as he produces an average of 800 cases of high-quality handcrafted wines each year. If you notice subtle musical decorations in the tasting room or note similar references in his promotional materials, it’s no coincidence. A winemaker by day, Autry is also a musician by night, regularly playing bass in three bands of varying genres—blues, jazz, and classic rock—at places like SLO Down Pub and McLintock’s in Arroyo Grande, Otter Rock Café in Morro Bay, Fin’s Seafood Restaurant and Bar in Grover Beach, and the Summer Jazz Series at Vineyard House Restaurant in Santa Ynez. Even

The view from the winery



MY OWN WINE TRAIL I first met Steve Autry about two years ago as I was planning to produce homemade wine from Syrah grapes grown at my modest vineyard, plus additional syrah grapes purchased from Wolff Vineyard in Edna Valley. Three years earlier, I had met Jean-Pierre Wolff during a field trip hosted by a Cal Poly wine appreciation class I attended. Later, Jean-Pierre provided advice and identified the root stock I should order from a Napa supplier for my own efforts. After asking around, I found the Vaughan family from Evergreen Landscaping in Oceano, who planted the vineyard and taught me about caring for the vines.

Bottling Autry Cellars wines

Autry Cellars’ wine club is called the Rhythm Section, with Ostinato and Back Beat club choices. Perhaps not surprisingly, a bass clef is a prominent part of the Autry Cellars logo. Tasting on the outside redwood deck has its benefits. Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner and Coast Starlight pass by here, lending a sense of wanderlust, as do the planes from SLO’s nearby regional airport. If the timing is right, those on the outside deck may even experience an ‘acoustic event’ as a large US Airways Canadair Regional Jet passes by on final approach, with the fading roar of its jets followed by silence, and then seconds later, an eerie howl wisping in from the distance with a wind whipping the vineyard and blowing leaves about.

On the hunt for expert winemaking mentoring, I heard from others time and again that Autry was the go-to guy for advice. They were right. After purchasing a barrel and related supplies from Doc’s Cellars, a SLO-based supplier for home brewers and winemakers, Steve guided me through the process of winemaking. Under his watchful eye, I learned how to crush and de-stem the grapes, begin fermentation and punch down the must (the pressed juice with skins), press the grapes, barrel the wine, adjust pH and brix (sugar level), treat with sulfites, and ultimately bottle, cork, and apply heat shrink foil caps. The final touch for Cogan Family Cellars’ ‘Writers Block Red’ was label design by Kraftwerk Design and printing by Poor Richard’s Press. Short-run labels can’t be applied by automated labeling machines, and instead must be applied by hand, one-by-one, a painstaking process ably taught to me by Autry.

The road to Autry Cellars’ new winery— about a half-mile south of San Luis Obispo Regional Airport and accessed via a driveway at Highway 227 (Broad Street) and Los Ranchos Road—is oddly symbolic. The signs are there, as clear as Autry’s wine epiphany in 1983, but getting on the road is a bit tricky. Then it’s a matter of forging ahead on a path that’s clear but not altogether smooth, requiring just the right amount of patience before the destination is reached. We’d say that’s a pretty fair analogy of Autry’s winemaking history, first as an amateur winemaker and then as a commercial enterprise producing and selling award-winning wines behind the roll-up doors of his original facility at a SLO business park. With his new production facility and tasting room on the Wine Trail between Tolosa and Edna Valley wineries, we’d say he has officially arrived.

Ron Cogan’s wine

My wine is for personal consumption and to share with friends and colleagues. Maybe my efforts will go beyond that one day…we’ll see. So far, all the ‘reviews’ are positive, as I hoped would be the case since, after all, the master scientist behind my winemaking effort is Steve Autry and he knows well how to make award-winning wines. Those interested in high-end amateur winemaking in need of expertise from a consulting winemaker, or others looking for custom bottling under their own label, would benefit by looking to Autry as well. – Ron Cogan

Pastrami Reuben or

Check out our Daily Lunch & Philly Steak Sandwich Dinner Specials including: Served with fries and slaw • Chimichangas $8.50 Check out ourTacos Daily • Mahi Mahi Lunch and Dinner • Chicken Enchiladas Specials Casual Atmosphere Serious Food Casual Atmosphere –- Serious Food OPEN 11:30 M-F

Lunch & Dinner 7 days a week Breakfast served Sat. & Sun. 9:00 Full Bar · Nightly Specials Owners — Scott & Dana Milstead Ron Cogan harvesting his grapes

750 Price Street, Pismo Beach 773-1922 M A R C H


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DANNY pelfrey: the music man By Natasha Dalton

“There’s an amazing amount of soul in his music.” ---Adam Levine (Human Nation) I expected Danny Pelfrey—the winner of Emmys, Golden Reel, BMI and other prestigious awards—to drive a Porsche 911 or Maserati. He showed up for the interview in a truck. “In LA I drive a Lexus,” he reassured me, noticing my surprise. “There you really need a wellbuilt, solid car that can insulate you from the outside.” A couple of years ago, Danny and his wife Nancy moved to the Central Coast, and the truck became a part of their transition to a simpler life on a ranch. The move wasn’t in any way an escape from the work in showbiz. It’s just that, thanks to modern technologies, the work, which before could only be done in Los Angeles, can nowadays be done just as well in a private studio in the country. “It’s a very peaceful thing to do,” Danny says. “I love it here. The Central Coast is a very peaceful place—with a vibrant music scene.” Actually, it’s proved to be vibrant enough to compel Danny—who until recently stayed focused on his work as a studio musician, composer, producer and publisher—to get back to playing live. This happened in 2009, when his friends from Tower of Power “dragged him on stage,” ignoring Danny’s protests. The concert went so well that it rekindled Danny’s passion for live performances. Since then, he’s been playing with Tower of Power and with the Barflyz. “He’s always been my better musical half on-stage and on hard drive,” Kenny Lee Lewis, of Steve Miller Band and Danny’s partner in Barflyz, says. “He is such a gifted saxophone player! No, really, he is incredible, both on sax and guitar. He is also a fantastic arranger, a real throwback to the great music of the 20th century. He has pioneered the niche market of music soundtrack licensing for us all. And he sings! Danny Pelfrey is your honorary mayor of Swingtown.” Not only that, Danny Pelfrey is also an acclaimed composer. If I were to simply name all the sitcoms, talk shows, films and other projects which boast Danny’s name in their credits, it would’ve filled up all the space I have for this story. The list of important nominations and awards he received for his work is equally extensive. Isaiah Berlin popularized a metaphor comparing the Hedgehog and the Fox. People driven by a single idea are like a Hedgehog, who never stops digging in a narrow space, while those with a wide range of interests are more like a Fox, who covers vast distances. By this definition Danny—whose musical interests span from classical to folk and everything in between—is definitely a Fox. His road to Hollywood went through Canada, of all places, where his musical career was launched. M A R C H


Journal PLUS

There he worked with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). “If there was anything you wanted to do, you’d send a proposal, and CBC would say: ‘Let’s do it!’ So we kind of created jobs for ourselves by playing on each other’s projects,” Danny remembers. This experience motivated Danny to move on to the bigger world of the music business in the U.S. In choosing between two musical capitals, Los Angeles and New York, Danny picked Los Angeles—because of its climate. A native of the East Coast, he still remembers his first visit to California. He came from Canada to Marin County in spring. “I remember thinking: ‘Man, this is for me!’” Danny says. “It’s beautiful. People are interesting. Music is everywhere. I’m coming back here!” He didn’t know anybody in California when he first moved here, but that didn’t stop him from finding a way to immerse himself in the music scene. “How one gets to Hollywood is always a mystery,” Danny says. “I fought for it and I started winning.” One of the big wins was a tour with Diana Ross, which began with the historic 1983 concert in Central Park in New York. Unfortunately, during the concert, the City of New York was hit by a thunderstorm of biblical proportions—the kind that in a matter of minutes takes down power lines, floods the streets and causes traffic accidents. Still, the musicians soldiered on. “We tried to keep on playing,” Danny remembers, “until everything turned into absolute chaos.” All 500,000 fans started to run, turning the tables over, screaming… The musicians had nothing left to do but grab their instruments and run for cover as well. If at that point Danny began to question his decision to get on the road, the doubts didn’t last. The next day the weather improved, and Diana Ross and her band were back on-stage. The fans were back,

too. The show was a smashing success, and so was the following tour. “It was extraordinary,” Danny says. “I got to play with really good musicians. We went all over the country and all over Europe. How bad can that be?” Back home things were going fine, too. Diane Steinberg Lewis of Barflyz remembers her big solo concert in Detroit, where she performed with Danny and Kenny Lee Lewis. “Detroit’s a hard audience to impress: we’re talking Motown, where discerning listeners’ ‘polite’ responses can be brutal,” she says. “Danny started blowing that horn and of course, I knew what was going to happen...” The crowd became ecstatic. “It’s always delightful to see people blown away,” Diane adds. The last big tour Danny did was with Carole King. “It was an extremely satisfying time for me,” Danny says. Even today, Carole King and Danny continue to collaborate on various projects: just last year Danny worked with the singer on her Christmas record. The tour with Carole King ran from 1988 until 1994. Meanwhile, Danny also started


to do studio work, and by the mid-nineties his writing career really took off: He began working in television and film production.


Reflecting on his glorious career, Danny admits: “Sometimes I say to myself: Wow, have I done all of that?! It’s pretty good.” No kidding! He recorded with Aretha Franklin, Smokey Robinson, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Eric Clapton, Paul Simon, James Taylor… He produced songs for Alisha Keys, Usher, Leann Rimes, Fantasia, John Legend, Brad Paisley, India Arie, Chris Isaak… He composed for a great number of movies and popular TV shows: American Dreams, Felicity, Spin City, Guiding Light; Strong Medicine, That’s Life and many, many others. His music is played on radio, TV and in films around the world. And don’t forget video and computer games! “That’s another cool world,” Danny says about the games. It’s also a multimillion dollar investment. “There’re many people who say, perhaps rightly, that the interactive entertainment experience is more appealing than the movies. During the movie you cannot affect the outcome; in a game—you’re interacting.” And the challenge for a composer is in creating music that can shift and be able to enhance the player’s experience. “The production budget is high—they hire live orchestras!— so it’s exciting,” Danny says.

Pelfrey with Heather Locklear.

I’m just a music guy,” Danny says. And his music keeps bringing audiences to their feet. Next concerts are March 3 and March 24. For more, visit htm;

Exciting? Certainly. But it sounds like quite a challenge, too. When asked about his method, Danny answers simply: “I work every day. I think that ‘writer’s block’ is for amateurs. When you write professionally, you just have to come up with something. I don’t want to sit in my ivory tower waiting for inspiration to strike. No, I go to work. You have inspired moments, and you’re glad when they happen, but you have to go looking for them. Still, it’s easier to find your way if you’re used to doing it,” he adds. So, Danny continues to take on new projects. After winning a Video Premiere award for the film Joseph: King of Dreams, Danny extended its musical themes into a piece he wrote for the Nashville Symphony. Last year the composition was also performed by the Jewish Symphony in Los Angeles, putting Danny’s name in the program next to the preeminent film composers of all times—Elmer Bernstein, Jerry Goldsmith and John Williams. What’s ahead? More music, of course. “Music is what I do. It’s all I know. It’s my thing. M A R C H


Journal PLUS



rotaract takes action: dominic tartaglia leads the way By Susan Stewart


ith a motto that forwards “Fellowship Through Service,” a small and dedicated group of young people in San Luis Obispo County are doing big things to help make our world a better place—locally and globally. This year, the two dozen members—ages 18 to 30 and hailing from Paso to Pismo—distributed 1300 warm winter coats to needy children in our county; and sent 20 brand new bicycles to Holly Drajovich, Rotaract President for 2012 a village in Zambia in a collaboration with SRAM (the local branch of an international bicycle company) and World Bicycle Relief. “The bikes are used to transport water, to get to school and to work,” said Dominic Tartaglia. “In developing countries, bicycles provide faster, longer, more efficient transportation in a sustainable way.” The children’s coats were collected from drop-off points throughout the county, cleaned by Paul’s Dry Cleaners, and stored at Meathead Movers prior to distribution in November. The annual Coats for Kids drive is held from August to October. Formed five years ago by Tartaglia (who is now the group’s historian), Rotaract is the “junior” version of Rotary International, fostering the benefits of volunteering, and feeding its members eventu-

SLO and Cal Poly Rotaract members at a beach cleanup event at Port San Luis.

ally into the larger, older group. Though it was up and running for three years prior, the paperwork for Rotaract SLO was completed in March of 2012, making the group official, with Tartaglia as the group’s first president. “I thought about joining Rotary,” said Tartaglia, “but then I heard about Rotaract and thought it would be a great volunteer experience to grow among my peers, people of the same age with the same interests.” In addition to Rotaract’s two major annual events—the local Coats for Kids Drive and the international Rotaract Bike Event—the group holds a number of other events throughout the year. From trail and beach cleanups, to helping with the Literacy Council Spelling Bee, Rotaract members have fun while doing something good for the community. They play softball, sponsor hikes, hold garage sales, participate in Bowl for Kids’ Sake—a fundraiser for Big Brothers Big Sisters, and much more. Perhaps most popular is the National Bike Month event held in May of each year when SRAM sponsors a “bike poker run.” Participant cyclists assemble a poker hand by picking up one playing card from each business they visit (about 16), as they cycle the course. Once they’ve got a full poker hand, they turn it in for judging at SLO Brew, a local restaurant, bar and music venue, where the winning hand is announced. There is a five-dollar fee to participate and there is also a small price for the barbecue lunch. All proceeds go to the overseas bicycle program. Rotaract welcomes young business professionals as well as students. In fact, Rotaract has a strong presence at Mission College Prep, Arroyo Grande and Morro Bay High Schools, enticing members from among their graduates; and there is a Rotaract Cal Poly. This year’s SLO Rotaract president is Holly Drajovich, who is looking to add new members, new ideas to the group. A visit to the Rotaract SLO website,, will give viewers a glimpse of the many ways in which this inspiring young group gives back. Though they are still a junior version of the larger group, they have no trouble at all living up to that larger group’s motto: “Service Above Self.”

SLO Rotaract members supporting the First Annual World Bicycle Relief M A R C H


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Rotaract SLO meets at the Comfort Suites Lamplighter, 1604 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo, every first and third Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. An application for new members is available online or you can email them at

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Huttle up

Amar & Jessica Sohi The torchbearers By Bob Huttle “There is only one success—to be able to spend your life in your own way.” ---Christopher Morley March 2012. Moving ahead at a rapid pace (more rapid the older one gets), spending a few minutes thinking about the recent Valentine’s Day, when thoughts focus on romance, the color red, and of course, LOVE. Last month I spent some time with two young adults who embody the word LOVE; for each other, for their families, friends, employees, and their profession. This couple—Jessica and Amar Sohi—should be studied by those looking to explain how life can be enjoyed to the fullest. They model the behavior, responsibility, work ethic, and values that politicians often pontificate about but, all too often, don’t exhibit. I remember Jessica and Amar from their days at San Luis Obispo High School. She, a beauty with intelligence, class, charm, and a sense of style; he a musician, actor, teenage raconteur with a sharp wit, intense eyes, and a built-in GPS for Jessica Foote. They became an item after meeting in Pam Orth’s newspaper/journalism class, and attended Amar’s Senior Prom together, where they stopped the show with their fancy attire and movie star looks. Amar’s “(carrying the) torch” for Jessica had been lit. Now devoted to each other, they head out into the world, looking for adventure, opportunity, and success. Amar attends UC Santa Cruz and, after a time, begins work with an architectural design firm in Silicon Valley. Meanwhile, Jessica is a student at San Francisco State University, where she will earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology. Neither one will concentrate their efforts in either of these disciplines. They don’t realize that their paths are moving towards the hotel industry after Amar’s company suffers when the bust hits after 9/11 and Jessica needs a real job (what do you do with a Sociology major?), landing a position at the posh, 5 Star Mandarin Oriental Hotel in San Francisco. Amar returns to his hospitality roots and becomes a bellman, then front office manager at the Radisson Hotel/Fisherman’s Wharf. Growing up at the Super 8 Motel on Monterey St in SLO, he was cleaning rooms at 12 years old, manning the Front Desk at 14, and by the time he was 16, he was responding to Corporate Guest

Amar and Jessica receiving the Torchbearers Award M A R C H


The Sohi family

Relations. Meanwhile, another opportunity presents itself to Jessica: she is hired as part of the Opening Sales & Marketing Team for the SF St. Regis Hotel. Perhaps you are detecting common threads that sew Jessica and Amar together: their passion for the hotel business, their delight in working with people who appreciate quality and service, and, of course, their love for each other. In 2006, they cast their fates together in a marriage ceremony that connects Amar’s Indian heritage and traditions with Jessica’s more Westernized, California approach. Off they go on a honeymoon to Europe but when they return, reality strikes. How are they going to make a living and do it here on the Central Coast, where they intend to live near family and friends? Do you believe in destiny? No? Well listen too this. In 2005, Atascadero is looking for someone to open a hotel and Amar and his four partners take the plunge, with Amar as the operating partner. What’s more, they are going to need someone to handle marketing and sales. All eyes turn to Jessica. It’s a no-brainer. For the next year Amar, Jessica and their partners throw themselves into preparing the hotel for its opening. They choose colors, fabrics, furnishings, designs, artwork, tile, wood trim, accessories, and landscaping. Amar oversees design decisions, in concert with Jessica and the other Partners. In July, 2008—the first Sohi child is 9 months old (Savita Bella, now 4, to be followed by Ravi, now 2)—the hotel opens and the real work begins: building a clientele, providing an exceptional experience for guests, and seeking return customers. The property is contemporary and comfortable, a true collaboration between Jessica and Amar.

The Holiday Inn Team

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PEOPLE Special mention needs to be made about the dedication and support from the local Partners of H&S Hospitality and their other businesses whom without this hotel would not have been possible: Carty Holland of Holland and Knapp Construction, Jerry Holland of Holland Realty, Ron Holland of the Holland Ranch wedding/event venue, and Mohan Sohi, the former owner of the Super 8 Motel on Monterey Street. So, what’s next for the Sohi’s and what Jessica calls “our third child” (the hotel)? Perhaps


managing another, more boutique style hotel in SLO County and maybe an casual upscale restaurant next to the HI/Express. There appears to be no stopping the guy who carried the torch years ago for his capable lady and, just maybe, more Torchbearer awards await down the road. “Success—to be able to spend your life in your own way.” Jessica and Amar would undoubtedly agree. Bob Huttle (Up) can be reached at As always, he welcomes your comments.

Amar and Jessica’s Wedding day

Accolades begin; guests write glowing reviews and, little by little, the Atascadero HI/Express gains a glowing reputation. Occupancy rates grow, client surveys rave about the service, the personable staff of twenty, and deluxe wine country accommodations. And then comes the big surprise. In October, 2011, Jessica and Amar’s Holiday Inn Express receives the 2011 Torchbearer Award, the Intercontinental Hotels Group’s most prestigious honor, at the annual Investors and Leadership Conference in Las Vegas. The hotel is one of only 24 properties selected from over 2,000 hotels in Canada, the USA, and Latin America to receive this honor. The Atascadero HI/Express is in the top 1% of hotels in this category that achieve the highest levels of excellence in all aspects of operation—from quality and product to customer satisfaction. HI/Express Atascadero is the first hotel in San Luis Obispo County to receive this distinction. Amar said: “We are honored...Our goal from the beginning was to be one of the best hotels in our brand the country, and I am proud to see we have achieved it. Our staff’s dedication to providing the best service experience to our guests truly shows throughout each department. We are extremely proud.” Kirk Kinsell, President, the Americas IHG, commented: “This hotel embodies the spirit, product, and service that continue to make IHG properties known and admired throughout the world.” (Note: IHG is a global company operating seven hotel brands. It is the world’s largest hotel group and manages or owns over 4,400 hotels in 100 countries and territories.) M A R C H


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Superintendent of the San Luis coastal unified School District

Eric Prater –

journey to responsibility By Will Jones “


knew I was breaking my father’s heart when I told him I was leaving the family business to pursue a career in education. It wasn’t easy for him, but he embraced the struggle I was experiencing and supported me.” The best stories often include unexpected twists and turns resulting from the protagonist’s inner conflicts. In 1989, with a degree in economics from St. Mary’s College in Moraga, Eric Prater went to work for his father’s business, managing the investment branch of the company. But something was missing in his life and he knew it. A conflict grew between loyalty to his family and his desire to help others, particularly children. Self-described as a “people person,” Eric volunteered at a local elementary school. He remembered attending YMCA camp in Michigan, where his family lived, until he was in 7th grade, and the impact a camp counselor had on him. “His name was Steve, and he had the ability to make each kid feel special. He brought out the best in me. He was positive, team oriented and I wanted to bring those qualities to my work.” By the spring of 1991 Eric knew he had to make a career change, and the difficult conversation with his father followed. Eric’s father William, an environmental scientist who worked on a project to clean up the Great Lakes, started a research firm in Ann Arbor. Eventually the company expanded and went public, and the family moved to Danville, California. Analytical Science Associates was involved in projects like investigating ground water pollution in Silicon Valley. Eric’s mother Linda, a math major in college, was ASA’s accountant, making it truly a family affair. A three-sport athlete, Eric attended Monte Vista High School in San Ramon Valley, where he also played trumpet in the marching band. The Prater family

He had an opportunity to walk on as a basketball player at St. Mary’s but chose to focus on academics. Following his decision to leave ASA, Eric taught English in Spain for a summer, an experience he calls “transformational.” He returned to St. Mary’s to participate in an accelerated one-year program to earn a multiple subject credential. At a career fair he was offered a job teaching 5th grade in Byron, California. As well as teaching his 5th grade class, Eric also taught algebra and coached basketball, softball, and flag football at the 5-8 middle school. Fully acknowledging “not knowing what I didn’t know,” one day Eric went to a local elementary school to use the die cut machine to make decorations for his classroom. A first grade teacher walked into the teacher’s work room, noticed he was having problems, and pointed out that he was putting the paper in the wrong slot. It was his first meeting with his future wife, Sherri. When the principal of his school was diagnosed with cancer in 1996, Eric was asked to fill in for a month or two as a “teacher on special assignment.” Before the end of the year the staff and superintendent asked him to stay in the position permanently. He said “yes” and was on the road to his career as an educational leader. He completed his administrative credential and master’s degree, got married, and in 1999 moved to Tracy to be vice-principal of a large middle school with abundant academic and social problems. In 2000 a call from the Brentwood Unified School District led to Eric becoming principal of Edna Hill Middle School. His challenge was to convert it from 5-6 to 6-8 and design a curriculum for a diverse school with a large economically disadvantaged student population. He was so successful that in 2006 Edna Hill was named a national model middle school. By 2007 Eric had three children and had finished his Doctorate in Education. He was contacted by an educational consultant and encouraged to apply for the superintendent position in Byron, his old



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PEOPLE school district. He was hired and remained in Byron until 2010, when what he described as an “Eric my boy, I have the perfect job for you,” call came from a consultant hired by San Luis Coastal Unified School District (SLCUSD) to search for a new district leader. After a lengthy hiring process, the Board chose Eric to lead the district. The Prater family moved to San Luis Obispo, Eric is now in his second year as superintendent, and his family has made the adjustment to its new environment. Sherri Prater is a reading specialist who, for ten years, has worked for the Rio Valley Independent Home School Charter. Their three sons, Thomas, Andrew and Matthew are 11, 9 and 4. Thomas, in 5th grade at Los Ranchos Elementary, participates in Junior Life Guards and is a voracious reader. Andrew, also at Los Ranchos, is in 3rd grade and enjoys 4H and flag football. Matthew attends the United Methodist Church preschool and loves hanging out with his brothers. Eric told me that it is a constant struggle to balance family and work responsibilities. “I have to be super disciplined to be ‘all in’ in both capacities. I have to remain focused so that time doesn’t get away from me.” He and Sherri make sure they have family dinners at least two to three times on weekdays and get out for hikes and other family activities on the weekend. Most mornings Eric, who holds a 3rd degree black belt in karate, is up at five and in the garage to stretch, run on the treadmill, and do some light weight-lifting.

Prater pointed out that thirty-seven percent of the students in the district meet federal guidelines as economically disadvantaged, a number that would surprise many. He is currently most proud of implementing the initiative to open pre-schools at five district elementary schools where there are high concentrations of economically disadvantaged students. All of the initiatives are designed to “pull up the blinds, take a close look at what’s happening and get on board to reflect the reality of today’s world.” Coupled with good working


conditions and fair compensation, as demonstrated through recently negotiated raises for all district employees, Eric is confident that San Luis Coastal Unified can be a model school district, one that continuously strives to meet the needs of all students. Superintendent Eric Prater is “all in” in pursuit of that goal. For more information about Superintendent Prater’s Three R’s: Rigor, Relevance and Relationships; his Circle of Caring; and the district’s Initiatives for Student Success, go to

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Now with a beautiful horseshoe bar and banquet room. Upper Crust has been serving fresh Mediterranean cuisine in San Luis Obispo for over 22 years.

Eric cited A. J. Cronin’s The Keys of the Kingdom as his favorite novel, and missionary priest Father Francis Chisholm, its central character, as an early inspiration. Chisholm perseveres through much hardship in the Chinese province where he is assigned. Despite many humbling experiences, he never loses his dignity or his genuine care for others. “From Chisholm and others I learned the importance of trusting people, beginning with the end in mind, gathering together a group of people with a similar level of care and belief, and taking risks in order to succeed. I hope that what I’m doing is robust and earnest enough that people will want to follow.” Eric believes that San Luis Coastal has an advantage because it has traditionally been run well and experienced success, but he believes it can function at a higher level. Following Eric’s guidance and vision, in 2011 the SLCUSD Board of Trustees approved ten initiatives to advance education for all students in the district. In our conversation,

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Too Slo: The Central Coast club for tortoise and turtle lovers By Hilary Grant


t’s probably a safe bet that most of us don’t know a whole lot about turtles—except, perhaps, for remembering The Tortoise and The Hare, the timeless Aesop’s Fable whose moral is “slow and steady is the way.” Unless, of course, you’re a member of the Turtle Organization of San Luis Obispo.

In fact, the unassuming non-profit—it also goes by the name TOO SLO— has 200 members and last summer, celebrated its 20th anniversary. Membership is $25 per year, which includes a subscription to the Tortuga Gazette, a monthly newsletter featuring chelonian news around the world, as well as a calendar of events from similar clubs on the West Coast. The club’s monthly Wednesday evening meetings are at the PG & E Community Center near Avila Beach; guest speakers have talked about wildlife conservation and rehabilitation, native flora and fauna, and the current science of animal research. “The commonality that binds us all together is our keen interest in turtles and tortoises,” says TOO SLO president Ray Suydam, a Long Island transplant, and now Pismo Beach resident, who owns two large rescue tortoises named Rocky and Prince. (“Anyone who has the misconception that these animals are slow hasn’t seen my boys running at feeding time,” he says.) Other members, adds Suydam, collect insects; some are also falconers and reptile enthusiasts. Many more, he says, identify themselves as staunch wildlife conservationists. In addition to promoting the care and welfare of their own animals, TOO SLO members are especially committed, says Suydam, “to providing education on the subject to the general public.”

Leopard Turtles

With the Pacific pond turtle and the California desert tortoise both native to the Central Coast, the club also rescues many hard-shelled critters in distress. TOO SLO even utilizes a local facility—the five-acre Triple-T Ranch (short for Turtles, Tortoises, and Thomas) in Arroyo Grande, owned and run by adoption coordinator Bob Thomas and his wife Judy. (Hundreds of healthy turtles and tortoises from dozens of species also live at the ranch, which is its own non-profit. The couple conducts private tours by appointment as well.) “Most often, the turtles and tortoises brought to Triple-T are suffering from malnutrition and parasite infestation, but there are other maladies, too,” says Ray Suydam. “Quite often, because people don’t know that turtles are not supposed to be kept in indoor aquariums, we rescue those that have spent their entire lives indoors. “Because of not knowing that turtles need to be outside in the most native habitat possible, their health has suffered greatly.” With at least a dozen rescues brought to the ranch every year, Suydam adds that “each animal’s recovery is tailored to his specific need.”

To that end, club members put on one-hour presentations at various elementary schools throughout the County, and provide a strong presence at numerous adoption events throughout the Central Coast. TOO SLOers are also currently working with the Santa Maria Discovery Museum to upgrade and improve that museum’s animal habitats. Additionally, the organization hosts the annual Turtle, Tortoise and Reptile Show every September at the SLO Veteran’s Hall. The family friendly event has taken place for more than 20 years; it’s here that visitors—up to 800 attendees—can see all sorts of exotic turtles and tortoises up close, as well as other reptile displays. Educational groups including Pacific Wildlife Care, Zoo to You and the Audubon Society come as well, and there’s also information about how to adopt a turtle. M A R C H


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Ray Suydam with Rocky and Prince

HOME/OUTDOOR mative book you can on the species,” says Suydam. “Then read it cover to cover, then backwards and forward, then put the book in a blender and eat said book. “Then, and only then, should you consider obtaining this species of animal.” Nonetheless, Suydam is not shy about his love for turtles and tortoises. “Contrary to popular belief, turtles and tortoises can be quite intelligent—and each one


has his own personality,” he says. “They can also be very low maintenance.” Suydam has one more point of interest. “These animals are distantly related to dinosaurs,” he says. “So, owning one really does give you a direct link to the past.” Find out more about the Turtle Organization of San Luis Obispo at or tortoise. org. Ray Suydam can be contacted at


MORTG AGE CONSULTA N T Car Wash fundraiser for the Club

One of the Triple-T’s biggest successes was a Pacific pond turtle discovered severely crushed by a motor vehicle. “A veterinarian examined the animal and announced the prognosis was not good,” says Suydam. “He was expected to die. But after nine months of round-the-clock care, not only did this turtle make a full recovery; he was able to be released back into his natural habitat.”


Suydam relates another heartwarming rescue. “Several years ago, a California desert tortoise was found wandering the streets of Santa Maria,” he says. “Luckily, it was one of many turtles that had been micro-chipped for easy identification.”

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Suydam goes on to say that this particular tortoise belonged to a woman hundreds of miles away in Santa Monica; she had lost him six years before. “Once contacted, his owner traveled up here for a tearful reunion with her animal, who she had given up as lost forever.”

years experience in the San Luis Obispo County marketplace, my

Turtles can make terrific pets, says Suydam, but only if potential owners are aware of the inherent responsibilities.

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“What is most often not realized is that these animals live a very long time,” he says. (Tortoises have been known to pass the 150 year mark, with many turtles making it to their 40th birthday.)

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phoebe apperson hearst and the california redwood park By Robert C. Pavlik California Department of Transportation Historian


mother to the flamboyant newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst, Phoebe Apperson Hearst was a giver and a doer and a supporter of numerous individuals, institutions, and organizations.

Phoebe Apperson Hearst (1842-1919) is not usually affiliated with the efforts to preserve native coast redwoods, and yet, given her background and her many worthwhile charities, it makes perfect sense that she would be involved in a cause so “Californian.” Born in Missouri, wed to mining and real estate magnate George Hearst, and

Her generosity largely targeted educational causes, of which the preservation of a grove of redwoods near Santa Cruz she also considered an educational benefit for the people of the state of California. Arthur Taylor, author of the book California Redwood Park (1912) wrote of Big Basin, “This forest is an aggregation of arboreal wonders. It is moreover a cathedral, a university, a sanitorium, a source of solace to the soul, an inspiration to the intellect, a tonic to the body.” Such sentiments had great appeal to Progressive Era reformers like Mrs. Hearst, who perceived in the private funding of kin-

he history of the redwood preservation movement has been well documented, and a few prominent individuals associated with the cause of saving the redwoods are well known. There is one person, however, whose name has faded from the limelight, perhaps in part because her role was largely financial and behind the scenes. Nevertheless, she is deserving of remembrance and recognition.

CRICKET HANDLER & JILL ANDERSON Artistic Directors Present

A C E L E B R AT I O N OF LOVE Sunday, March 11, 2012 4 p.m. United Methodist Church San Luis Obispo Featuring the women from Cuesta College Choirs, with Director John Knutson

$15 General Admission $10 with Student ID Tickets: 805.542.0506 or

Celebrating Women’s Voices M A R C H


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Phoebe Apperson Hearst

dergartens, parks, museums, and universities, the betterment of the public at large. In the beginning, it was not just men who first came to the aid of the great trees, but women, highly educated and energetic women who organized and lobbied to preserve an important part of the state’s natural heritage. Women such as Josephine Clifford McCracken, Carrie Stevens Walter and others wrote articles in national magazines, led field trips to Big Basin, and organized campaigns to save the redwoods, and through their actions and influence helped convince lawmakers and the governor (all male at the time) to pass legislation in 1901 for the acquisition of a California redwood park. Phoebe Hearst’s role was low-key, yet essential to the Sempervirens Club’s success. It was Mrs. Hearst who, through her unstinting generosity, underwrote the cost of the campaign, an unselfish contribution that lasted more than two years and that amounted to several thousand dollars. While she did not seek public recognition for her largess, she was honored in the dedication in Taylor’s book: As a recognition of her generous and timely aid and inspiration in the acquisition and development of this forest park, for the people, this work is respectfully dedicated to MRS. PHOEBE A. HEARST And so it is to her everlasting credit, and to our benefit, that Mrs. Hearst took a quiet yet critical role in the Sempervirens Club’s lobbying efforts to acquire Big Basin. To adapt a phrase used in reference to the first director of the National Park Service, Stephen T. Mather, it can be said of Phoebe Apperson Hearst that “there will never come an end to the good that she has done.”



vets voice

every era to make doctors aware of their military history when being evaluated, diagnosed, and treated,” he said.

benefits grow more important as veterans age

Confusion is one of the reasons veterans don’t file for their benefits. What benefits are available? Is there an application time limit? Does a disability have to be combat-related to quality for benefits? Can a disability rating be upgraded or a disability rating denial be appealed? What benefits are available to veteran family members?

By CalVet Office


alifornia is currently home to 1.9 million veterans. Sixty-three percent of those veterans are 55 years old and older. With Americans now living longer, there has been a dramatic rise in the demand for elder health care and other services. Veterans’ benefits, available through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (USDVA) and the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet), can help veterans of any age but may be especially important to those nearing or in retirement. For older individuals, veterans’ benefits could mean the difference between a secure retirement and having to watch every dollar spent. Benefits could also mean the difference between quality health care, including free eye glasses and hearing aids, and undiagnosed and untreated health problems. Unfortunately, only about 15% of eligible California veterans are taking advantage of their compensation and pension benefits and less than 40% are using their health care benefits.

These and other benefits questions can be answered by CalVet or by the veteran’s County Veteran Service Office (CVSO). Both organizations can also help veterans complete and submit the often confusing and frustrating benefit applications. Mike recently contacted CalVet. The department is now helping him determine the veteran health and disability benefits he may be entitled to, including free hearing aids. When asked whether he had any advice for veterans now coming home, Mike said, “Yeah, talk to someone about your benefits and take advantage of them as soon as you can.” For answers to benefits or other veteran-related questions, visit the CalVet web site at or call 877-741-8532. For the location of the nearest CVSO, visit, click on “Contact Us,” and then click on the veteran’s county of residence.

Mike Pagan was just 20 years old when he enlisted. He spent four years in the Navy and two in the Reserves. He was deployed and assigned to a carrier group that operated in the South China Sea. Mike was involved with storage of ammunition, security of magazines. He also worked on replenishment of supplies which involved dismantling great loads of materials and bombs. After retraining in special operations, he was deployed on a small class ship and operated off the coast of Vietnam, north and south of Da Nang, as troop support and rescue. While working on the ship one day, Mike was hit on the side of the head by a heavy piece of metal packing material tossed by one of his ship mates. “My head hurt for a few days,” said Mike, “but I didn’t give it much more thought after that.” Now, at the age of 63, Mike suffers from repeated ear infections and a loss of hearing. He wonders whether his health issues are related to the injury he sustained on the carrier that day and wishes he had applied for his health benefits when he got out of the service.

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Many older veterans are beginning to feel the effects of injuries sustained during military service decades ago or are finding their symptoms have gotten worse with age. Some Vietnam veterans, whose average age is now between 60 and 65, are being diagnosed with ailments associated with their exposure to Agent Orange—the toxic herbicide used to defoliate the jungle between 1962 and 1971. The USDVA now presumes that 14 diseases and disorders found in “boots-on-the-ground” veterans and certain other Vietnam veteran groups are the result of Agent Orange exposure.

obsolete idea away forever! We of-

“It would be easy for a doctor to overlook Agent Orange exposure as the cause of a patient’s Type 2 diabetes when genetic and lifestyle risk factors are present. The post traumatic stress disorder at the root of a veteran’s chronic depression could also be missed,” said CalVet Secretary Peter Gravett. “That’s why it’s so important for veterans of

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During your visit, you can snuggle under a warm blanket and listen to music. As a caring and considerate dentist, Dr. Colleran can make any dental procedure comfortable. the way of your dental health.

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at the market

Arugula and avocado salad in lemon garlic dressing By Sarah Hedger


s I write this article for March, there has yet to be much rain on the Central Coast which can be a grim reality for some of our local

farmers (hopefully this has changed by the time you read this). While we know the weather pattern can quickly change, the plants growing outside don’t, which

can leave farmers at the mercy of Mother Nature, while doing their best to replicate what season the plants should be feeling this time of year. Point being, it is more important than ever to support local farmers through purchasing their produce. Whether it is directly at our amazing farmers’ markets or locally owned stores who buy locally, both reach the end result of buying local product. Another good option for those too busy to make it to the markets is to check out SLO Veg (check out for a list of the local growers they represent as well as the impressive variety of options grown locally) as well as food co-ops, who connect local (pesticide free and/ or organic) growers by delivering fresh, seasonal produce to your doorstep. All of these are great options as they provide numerous choices of what is in season and produced locally. The goal of this month’s recipe was to create a salad that has a variety of locally grown produce, while being simple, delicious, as well punching above its weight in the “healthy” department. Thus, Arugula and Avocado Salad in a Lemon Garlic Dressing resulted, meeting the criteria while being easy to put together. While the salad doesn’t have many ingredients, the ones it does have are stellar as far as contributing to the nutrient density. Arugula, most know for its peppery-ness, is high in Vitamin C as well as potassium. Look for pesticide free (or organic) grown arugula. The garlic and lemons used in the dressing are also found locally, with both punching above their weight with the amount of Vitamin C they offer. Almonds, again available locally, are rich in Vitamin E, fiber, and monounsaturated fats. Interesting fact about almonds is that our government requires large producers of raw almonds to be pasteurized, yet imported almonds aren’t required to be, which makes little sense at all. Unfortunately this is an example of legislation trying to “protect” the public without applying sensible logic. Fortunately, it is still possible to buy raw almonds from local, small producers. As a fun experi-



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ment, purchase local almonds and then buy some from a store where the place of origin is unknown (or foreign) and try them side by side in a blind testing. Your taste buds can tell the difference and the local almonds will taste fresh, sweet (and far superior) to imported ones. The salad also includes avocados which are easily found locally and we are lucky enough to have multiple varieties to choose from. While avocados are known to be high in healthy monounsaturated fats, they are also very high in fiber. Lastly, while apple cider vinegar is easily overlooked as a condiment, it is also found in the supplement aisle as many claim it to be an elixir in its own regard. Look for brands such as Braggs which produces vinegar through natural fermentation as it will taste substantially better than ones that have been overly processed. Thus, I trust this salad will impress your taste buds while leaving you feeling an extra boost of health. Enjoy!

Arugula and avocado salad with lemon garlic dressing FOR THE DRESSING: 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced 1 T. Dijon mustard 2 T. cider vinegar (or other mild vinegar such as rice wine vinegar) 3 T. fresh lemon juice 1 tsp. sea salt (or to taste) ½ tsp. fresh ground pepper (white pepper works well too) ½ c. olive oil * Note: Dressing makes about 1 cup and only ½ cup is needed for this salad, thus remove roughly half of the dressing, before adding the salad ingredients, and use for another time. In a large salad bowl place the garlic, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. With an immersion blender (or vigorous whisk), slowly whisk in olive oil. Oil will become emulsified with the other ingredients and dressing will become surprisingly creamy. FOR THE SALAD: Large bunch arugula, rinsed and dried ½ cup almonds (roast at 375 degrees for 15-20 mins until aromatic), roughly chopped ¼ cup fresh basil or parsley, minced 1 avocado, peeled and thinly sliced *1 T. finely minced red chili pepper (optional for those who like a little heat) When ready to eat, place salad ingredients on top of prepared dressing (in large bowl). Toss well and top with some thinly sliced fresh avocado with a sprinkle of flaky salt. *Feel free to email me at if you have any food-related questions and find this recipe (as well as other versions) at

A Retirement Facility 26


Even though the prospect of moving may be in the distant future, you owe it to yourself to learn how you can enjoy Daniel Dove carefree living in your own home for many years to come.

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You Don’tDove: HaveOur to Move Daniel best painter? Feel Safe and Secure

It’s a fact of life that as we get older, Pristine is fully By Gordon Fuglie some day-to-day tasks become too licensed and insured. much to handle on our own. That All of our workers doesn’t mean you have to move away are carefully screened from the comfort of your home. and pass a criminal • Personal Pristine Home Services is• aHousekeeping local background check Care that helps San Luis Obispo and drug test, giving you peace of mind • Yard company • Handyman Maintenance County residents avoid the high cost when someone from Pristine is working Servingof moving All oftoSan Luis Obispo County a retirement facility. in your home.


“She helps me with bathing and other Enjoy Affordable Living osing the question above, personal care. She is so wonderful to me. Home Services Specialist

I believe a solid case can be made All of our services can be provided She should be cloned! …and the is that Daniel Dove, Calprice Poly professor daily, weekly, or on an as-needed basis. of studio art, currently is SLO County’s very reasonable. She even did my win- top practitioner of easel painting. I became a From housekeeping You to handyman services and plumbing to preparing meals. There is no task too large or pay for only the services you need R. Watson, San dows!” believer in 2011Luis whenObispo I saw an exhibit of too small for Pristineand Homewe Services. All of ourthose services can be providedatdaily, weekly, or on an as-needed provide services a price his paintings at Compact Gallery in San basis. You pay for only the services you need and we provide those services at a price you can“They afford. took the ask me exactly Luis time Obispo.toDespite my 35 years as an art you can afford. what I wanted. They arrived onhistorian, time, did museum curator and art nothing Pristine Home Services made it possible forwhat prepared me for thethe monumental images exactly I asked, and price was Convenient One-call startled, pushed, pulled and finally us to stayService comfortable and independent reasonable. that I would recommend Pristine amazed me with their across-the-board in our home. When Mary was diagnosed Our personal care services include a friend. C. Hall,ofSan Luis style, Obispo technique, composition with cancer, is no longer ato threat, the ”command shopping, daily errands, mealwhich preparaand concept. Studying Dove’s brooding and people at Pristine became a very important uncanny tableaux, I found myself on the tion, transportation part andofnon-medical Before you make any decisions that our team. They were trustworthy, move—walking toward, drawing back, or care. Our housekeeping services keep your tofuture reliable and always stood by ourcould side. Weaffectstepping the sidehappiness to gain perspective. Few our relationship their staff. your kitchen and thetruly restenjoy of your home withand pictures these days have the that sort of power standard of living, take time and-- Don and Mary Smith to literally animate a viewer. spotless. We even do windows to read these two FREE reports: laundry. Our yard maintenance crews The genius underlying Dove’s work is that Before you make any decisions that could affect your future happiness and standard of living, take every “What senior needs objects to know he takes commonplace of domestic know how to take care of your favorite the time to read these two FREE reports: and in commercial civilization—suburbia, about living a retirement facility. ” strip rose bushes and keep the grass neatly mall coffee shops, industrial warehouses, “What every senior needs to know about living in a retirement facility.” airplane fuselages—and transforms mowed. Our handyman services are “Four critical questions to ask a them “Four critical questions to ask a service provider...before you let anyone work in or near your home.” into multi-layered, unnerving and darkly provided by specialists in plumbing, service provider . . . before you let beautiful images that confront the viewer as We invite you to call Pristine right now so that we can send you these two FREE reports by mail. paintings. is an your important distinction. electrical work, painting, repairs and anyone work in orThis near home.” The vast majority of contemporary paintings safety rail installation. Call for rateS are first concerned with theright representation of We invite you to call Pristine some thing, whether an abstraction from the now so thatworld wearound can send you these us, or a depiction of a person, two FREE reports by mail. place or group of objects. In such works, the

artist’s pigments are deployed in service to the

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romantic gestural flourishes of long handled red sable and bristle brushes that invest the artist’s tools with the aura of a magic wand. Dove’s painting tools, however, are more varied and down to earth. In addition to



the whole, while fixing it in midair suspension. In Dove’s painting, however, the jungle gym and the vehicle make for two illusions, or one illusion “containing” another. What Dove has achieved here is a daring extension of painting’s traditional role as a window onto the world we know—or expect, to the creation of a “new world” with variable displays of space and gravity within the picture plane. Art history is an undercurrent in Dove’s painting. How could it not be, especially in a work like Vanishing Point (2010)? This 5 by 8 foot painting is composed via the Renaissance construction of space with a single central vanishing point. Placed “within” this vast receding interior space is another of Dove’s hovering objects, a decaying cylindrical airliner—a pair of illusions among the ruins. This element also suggests subtle social commentary, though Dove prefers to keep mum about this. For me, the degraded sites in Dove’s images speak to an America adrift, our present casting about for a new direction as we leave outmoded practices behind. Exploded View

traditional artists’ brushes, he acquires many of his painting tools from The Home Depot, and has been known to use the serrated edges of rough-sawn lumber to apply his oils. For Dove, the goal for his art is a satisfying blend of two levels of content. The first is his selection of a certain kind of landscape, often a suburban, civic or industrial view that is either bleak or somewhat degraded, lending it an edge. This preference steers him away from banal subjects that reassure instead of provoke. In addition, Dove incorporates elements that both compound and confound the composition. His second element is in the application of oil paint itself. Here Dove endeavors a multi-style, creating his paintings from a “collage” of dynamic techniques, from coarse to fine, with a judicious incorporation of rhythm and patterns to enliven the image.

It would be a serious mistake to say that Dove is only playing illusory games in his imagery. There’s so much more at stake in his work. When all is said and done, Dove’s paintings are about seeing and reflecting on the implications of what he saw, followed up by an answering back to that experience with a wider, deeper vision that brings art and life together in a new key. For a painter in full command of his skills, and an appreciative audience, it doesn’t get much better than that. Daniel Dove will be showing his work at the SLO Museum of Art in an exhibit titled Remains of the Future, September 7 - 30, 2012. For more information about the artist, see also

Exploded View from 2009 uses a muted and dun-colored palette offset by a blood red geometric filigree and vivid scrapings of iridescent greens and blues at the heart of the composition. What is so remarkable about this work is our immediate encounter with it as a painting and an image, not an image that was simply painted. The subject of Exploded View is a baffler. Upon a vast sandy playground, Dove has placed a circular red jungle gym, creating a three-dimensional illusion at the center of the painting. Impossibly hovering inside (and protruding from) the jungle gym is a worse-for-wear off-road vehicle. Stripped, its interior, windows, engine and wheels are gone. The “exploded view” refers to the vehicle and derives from an illustrative feature of technical manuals to display the multiple components of manufactured objects, an illusionary artifice for dissembling

Vanishing Point M A R C H


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take a second look at a familiar face... the Sinsheimer Bros. Building is ready for business By Susan Stewart


he early morning sun glints off the gold leaf-enhanced sign that hangs above six pairs of elongated, double French entrance doors, each one flanked by cast iron columns with fluted pilasters. Above the sign—made all the more dramatic by its gold-against-black background—six Islamic, segmental-arch windows are topped by a flat corniced roof with a triangle-shaped pediment. And for the first time in more than a century, four elegant finials can be seen, crowning what is arguably the most historically significant building in town. Thanks to seismic retrofit orders issued by the City in the summer of 2010, the Sinsheimer Bros. building at 849 Monterey Street looks as shiny and elegant today as it did when it was built

Tom Stepp of Greg Moore Construction along with Gary Foster from Foster Enterprises, positioning one of the large steel members of what is called a “moment frame” that had to be slipped into the old brick shell of the building. M A R C H


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The Sinsheimer Building today

in 1884 by three brothers—Bernard, Henry, and Aaron Zacharias Sinsheimer—as a mercantile store. Better known as “A.Z.,” Aaron Zacharias was a Civil War veteran who ran the family businesses (which included raising cattle, developing land, and providing loans to local farmers and ranchers) long after his two half-brothers had moved to San Francisco. By 1898, A.Z.

Sean Beauchamp of Southpaw Signs reinstated the historic sign. Sean is a master signmaker, and used his rare supply of historically significant gold leaf to completely rebuild and recreate the old sign, which had weathered beyond repair.

COMMUNITY The Sinsheimer Building, right, July 4, 1915

and his son, Louis, became sole owners of the family firm.* Louis would eventually become mayor, but continued to preside over the store, which sold everything from dry grocery goods to ready-made clothes, patterns and fabrics to textiles and tools. “If you couldn’t get it anywhere else, you could always find it at Sinsheimer’s,” was the commonly known fact around town. The Sinsheimer family ran the store until 1974 when the business was sold, but the


The Sinsheimer Building early 1900s

building has remained in the family and the ground floor has been occupied by mostly retail merchants, including Granny’s General Store and Country Classics. The building’s second story offers ten spacious office suites. Renovated at the hundred year mark in 1984, every attempt has been made to keep the historic details authentic, and this year’s efforts have gone the extra mile. Warren Sinsheimer, A.Z.’s great-grandson, said old photographs were scrutinized so that the contractor could

bring the building up to contemporary safety standards, while recreating the historic elements as closely as possible to the original design. Built along the historic Rose Alley, the exposed red brick building-side leads to a surprise: a courtyard sitting area where once there was a parking lot, and a separate historic building once used as storage for the mercantile, now also restored with an elegant entryway. General Contractor, Greg Moore, whose company oversaw this year’s retrofit, was on



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method was used on many of the buildings in the overall project, including Sinsheimer Bros. “We are very fortunate that he [Warren Sinsheimer] is so dedicated to this,” said Girvin. “He’s really gone the extra step, he and many of the other building owners as well, and that’s commendable.” With a long legacy of philanthropy and community service, the Sinsheimer family has earned its high and permanent place in the city’s history, manifested in the building that bears its name. In the mid-1980s, while the building was undergoing its first major face-lift, Warren Sinsheimer took a leadership role in the organization and funding of the Performing Arts Center, serving as first president of the Foundation for the PAC. He later helped to establish the San Luis Obispo County Community Foundation and served on its board for many years. “I didn’t know Warren very well before the bidding process began for this year’s retrofit and renovation,” said Moore, “but I was really impressed by something he said once the contract was signed.”

Carol and Warren Sinsheimer, with Anne Sinsheimer and Greg Moore

site when that smaller building was cleared out during the first renovation 25 years ago. Back then, Moore was a recent high school graduate, acting as a “go-fer” on his first job with the contractor in charge. He remembers that day well, describing the amazing number of historic artifacts unearthed inside that building: yellowed maps, tin boxes, clothbound ledgers, photographs, furniture, magazines, fabric, scales, paperweights, banker’s lamps, and all imaginable sewing notions. Warren Sinsheimer’s Aunt Anne and mother Marion supervised the destinations for each of the artifacts, directing them to their car trunks, to boxes for charity, to Cal Poly, or to the Historical Society. As he worked on this year’s restoration, Moore recalled that parade of priceless historical items, and the women who directed its progress from their makeshift parking lot chairs, with a mix of awe and amusement. With the final inspection completed last year, The Sinsheimer Bros. building is one of many included in the city-wide retrofit project. “As a city, we are very near the end of the whole retrofit project,” said Claire Clark, Economic Development Manager for the City. Buildings outside of the downtown area (such as the small brick building at Broad and Buchon now housing The Grinder sandwich shop, and the Army-Navy store on South M A R C H


Higuera) have all been completed as of 2010. Clark said there are only two categories left: those buildings with a July 1, 2012 deadline, and those with a July 2015 deadline. Only a few remain in the first category, with most being partially done already. The larger projects like Garden Street Terraces, Chinatown, and the Naman project are in the second category, but Clark said she expects that most will be completed before the 2015 deadline. “None of this is easy for anyone,” said Clark. “There was a lot of fear that the downtown would change if owners were forced to retrofit. But the spirit of cooperation between the city and owners has been strong. … What I feel is most important to stress is the work of the owners,” she continued. “They have made a huge difference in the look, the safety, and the feel of the city.” “No one likes to get bad news from the City,” Sinsheimer admitted. “The most challenging part was deciding exactly what we would do [once the retrofit order was issued]. … That aside, the City has been a good facilitator of healthy processes; it’s been as helpful as it could be.” Shotcrete, according to SLO City’s Chief Building Inspector, Tim Girvin, is a new reinforcement technique that creates a “wall” of concrete sprayed through the nozzle of a hose at high velocity. This new and improved

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According to Moore, Sinsheimer shook his hand and said he hoped that they would start this project as friends, and end it as friends. “To both our credits, we have done that,” said Moore. “It was a great experience to work with someone I’ve heard about my whole life.” Such an iconic and familiar part of the downtown “landscape,” the building is easy to take for granted. If you haven’t strolled by it lately, take note. A glance across the street at another historic landmark, the Mission, makes it easy to imagine the horse-drawn buggies, the sacks of flour, the carefully scripted ledgers, and the long, lacy dresses that were all a part of the bustling commerce being conducted at the popular mercantile more than a hundred years ago. While the new tenant for the ground floor has not yet been selected, Sinsheimer hopes it will be a retail business to carry on the tradition. Safe for occupants and passersby for another 125 years, the Sinsheimer Bros. building is a proud and shining emblem of the rich history and generous legacy of its founding family. *I owe a generous nod of thanks to Janet Penn Franks, whose two-part article from March and April of 2004’s SLO County Journal provided much of the historical information for this one.

Congratulations Sinsheimer Family on the retrofit completion of one of San Luis Obispo’s most beautiful historical buildings.

Thank you for letting us be a part of it.

Greg Moore Construction, Inc. Alpha Fire Sprinkler and Alpha Fire & Security Alarm Boller Communications · Bobcat Rain Gutters Inc. · Tom Brajkovich, Architect, Paragon Designs Browder Painting Co. Inc. · Central Coast Door & Window · Contractor’s Glass Co. Doshier Concrete Cutting • Drywall Dynamics Inc. · Foster Enterprises • Mitch Vieira Plumbing Gary D. Bailey Custom Masonry • Hunter Cabinetry • Italfloor Covering Knecht’s Plumbing & Heating Inc. · Lampman & Associates · Lavery Electric Prosource Flooring · Quaglino Roofing · Quality Tile Inc • S. Chaves Construction Inc. The Sheet Metal Shop Inc. · South Paw Sign Co. · Van Patten Hardwood Services M A R C H


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history -

chauncey hatch phillips part 1 By Joseph A. Carotenuti


hen reflecting upon a life, there is often a sense of inevitability as the person wanders—by choice or by chance—through the years allotted for the trip. Described as someone who “made history” while alive, Chauncey Hatch Phillips lived as if he had an agenda requiring his carefully following one step after another. From today’s perspective, he clearly had no peer in evaluating the present, perceiving the future, and building the bridge to connect the two. In his wake, he contributed mightily to the development of the central coast and beyond. Certainly attentive to the security and comforts provided by wealth, his fortune (or lack thereof ) is of minimal importance; however, his legacy of enterprise is remarkable. Here’s the story. Chauncey’s earliest years provide few clues as to his future. Born in Ohio in 1837, the child followed his family to Wisconsin when seven years old. Possibly his new environment contained a subtle hint as to his future as for the next eight years he lived in a small crossroads called Eldorado in Fond du Lac County. A far cry from the mesmerizing lands of gold so popular with the Spanish especially, he left at age 16 for the southernmost county of Walworth to pursue various options including reading law and teaching. Both ventures speak to a mind both literate and analytical. Whatever else he may have done, he remained in contact with his family in Fond du Lac and even married a neighbor’s daughter, Jane Woods, in 1862. Who knows what the young man had heard of the “West” and the tales of el dorado but in 1864 he decided to seek his fortunes in the wilds of the 31st state. Unknown to him at the time, his most successful ventures would begin radiating from San Luis Obispo in less than a decade. Leaving his wife and daughter (born in 1863) in Wisconsin, until his daughter was ready to travel, he settled in Napa and operated a school for less than a year and then worked in a bank while pursuing his reading in the law and as a Deputy County Clerk. Described as having a “fine physique and fine appearance,” he also must have displayed leadership characteristics. By the end of the decade, Chauncey excelled as a government employee but resigned as Chief Deputy Collector of the U. S. Internal Revenue Department. Characterized as having a “distinguished” career, overseeing the collection of revenue from other people’s resources undoubtedly allowed him to see what ventures proved the most lucrative. It was a small step from noting the financial successes of others to developing his own. While stationed in San Francisco, it is not unlikely he became acquainted with Horatio M. Warden. Certainly a pioneer figure in the earliest history of this County, Warden deserves his own profile. M A R C H


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Suffice to note here, he and Phillips joined forces and opened the first bank in the county in late 1871. Warden was a wealthy man and Chauncey was most capable of organizing and promoting the financial enterprise. Within 18 months, the Bank of San Luis Obispo filed Articles of Incorporation with a stellar cast of local shareholders to replace the partnership with Phillips as Cashier (the term used for the vicepresident and treasurer). For the sparsely populated county (@5000 residents), the bank was yet another sign of both economic stability and growth. For continued prosperity, more depositors were needed and it wasn’t long before Chauncey Hatch Phillips had just the solution. In part, he needed to enter politics. A mere two years after arriving in the tiny valley community, in 1873 he was elected to the Board of Trustees—forerunner of today’s City Council. The others elected chose him as chairman. In an isolated mid-point between the powerful San Francisco and developing southland, those of education and means were not confined to one business or career. Elected office was necessary to maintain legal protocols but was not a particularly desirable obligation. It was, however, an excellent opportunity to continue fostering a place where others might come to live. Towns needed revenue and revenue demanded people. Phillips continued in the same role during the next term but relinquished his chairmanship for his third election. The politics of the day as reviewed in page after page of official minutes recorded in the exquisite penmanship of Town Clerk Julius Krebs deserve closer attention at some future date. However, one directive of Phillips underscores his business acumen.


Indeed, in 1875, the husband and father of five children, an elected officer of the community, and an increasingly important figure in the development of the central coast decided prosperity required more communities.

scriptions for the narrow-gauge railroad. From Port Harford (now Port San Luis) into San Luis Obispo, the first rail connection on the central coast held immense promises. Faith in Chauncey’s financial abilities was undoubtedly boosted by the bank’s avoiding failure in the statewide 1875 banking debacle. To calm anyone concerned about deposits, R. E. Jack declared he had no intention of withdrawing his $25,000 deposit and Nathan Goldtree so agreed as to his $10,000.

A few years before his first term of office, the Town of San Luis Obispo had achieved geographical legitimacy by buying itself from the Federal government. While there was locally the buying and selling of land, building structures as homes and businesses, until 1872 there was no governmental recognition of the municipality. Once purchased (approximately 550 acres at $1.25 per acre), it was during Chauncey’s tenure that the transaction was finally recorded. Being a member of the growing community’s governing elite did not deter from an equally—or more important—municipal task: the railroad. In the scenic isolation of the central coast, transportation was much more important than vistas. To prosper and thrive, goods and people needed more transport than by horseback, wagon, stagecoach or clipper.



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Hospice corner giving a planned gift By Yvon Gresser – Development Consultant


here there is a will, there is usually a relative. There is also a chance that a nonprofit group can be mentioned in a bequest, but very often people need encouragement and information before making a charitable bequest in their will. Take for example the recent case of a widowed woman. Let’s call her Jane. She and her husband, whom we will call Bob, had an active life on the Central Coast, involved in many nonprofit groups and local activities. Bob passed away about five years ago. Their finances were planned in a trust agreement and gave Jane peace of mind. But being rather inquisitive about matters, she went to visit their estate attorney, asking about the details and was advised the trust could be updated when she was ready. Still grieving the loss of her lifelong companion, Jane decided to wait and give this some thought. Fast forward to the present time. Jane suffered a heart attack and was taken to the hospital by ambulance where she died a few weeks later, surrounded by her closest friends. Having had no children or immediate family, the trust named a niece, whom they hadn’t seen in over 20 years, as the beneficiary of their estate. Living a busy life very far away, she had no idea what either Jane or Bob’s wishes would be nor any of the details of their life and involvement with the community and local charities. Unfortunately the organizations both Jane and Bob were so active in didn’t benefit from a planned gift in any form. Planned Giving can be the answer to your own goals, and can benefit your family in addition to assisting the designated charity. Not only can you benefit yourself, but you can also benefit your family and leave behind a legacy which helps ensure your designated nonprofit organization can continue providing needed services and programs well into the future. Many people enjoy supporting a nonprofit or charitable group because they have shared goals and values with the organization. You or your family may have benefited from the services of a charitable nonprofit, volunteered, and found both meaning and joy in serving and giving of your time and talent. Giving a planned gift can be relatively easy and possible for many people regardless of wealth status. There are many ways to leave a legacy to a charitable organization. For example, you can make an outright gift of money, life insurance policies, stock, retirement savings, real property or items of personal property. A gift made to a charitable organization that the donor wishes to support gives them the joy in knowing that the gift will make a big difference in the community and those receiving services from the nonprofit organization. There are various methods used to leave money or property to a charity. If your goal is to keep control of your assets throughout your lifetime and you do not want to make a gift now, you can create a bequest in your will or trust stating a specific amount or percentage of your estate to go to that charity. Or, you can name a particular asset in your estate, such as real property, stock, or some other asset that you want to leave to a charity. Whatever the value of that asset is determined to be, at your death, will be the value of the deduction for estate tax purposes. A gift made now removes the asset from your taxable estate or becomes a deduction on your tax return in the year it is given. Both options result in tax savings. If you currently own stock or real property that has appreciated since you acquired it and you don’t want to sell it because of the capital gains taxes that would be payable, a great option is to give that asset directly to your favorite tax exempt charity, either now or at your



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death. Either way, a gift of an appreciated asset will mean that neither you nor the charity will pay any capital gains taxes and you can receive an income tax deduction for the gift in the year you make the gift.



A direct gift or bequest is the easiest charitable gift to establish, since it merely requires you to either make a gift now or include a provision in your will or trust that you wish to make a gift to the charity. For example, if your desire is to leave a specific bequest to a charity, you can ask your estate planning attorney to make a bequest in your will or trust. You would begin by verifying the legal name and mailing address along with the federal tax number of the charity. As you can see by the example above, planned giving requires some advance planning. Periodic review of your will or trust is advisable if any of your circumstances have changed, such as the death of a spouse or significant other, additions to the family such as grandchildren, or if you simply want to review your wishes to create a lasting legacy. This monthly Hospice Corner is sponsored by Hospice Partners of the Central Coast. Yvon Gresser is the Development Consultant at Hospice Partners. For more information, call (805) 782-8608.


ACROSS 1. *”We Are the _____” 6. *Madonna’s cone-shaped garment 9. Clarified butter 13. Farewell in France 14. *”Barbara ___,” sung by The Beach Boys 15. Private university in Des Moines, IA 16. Times New _____ 17. *Papa’s got a brand new one 18. Oil tanker 19. *A rockabilly original 21. Ran away to marry 23. Open box attached to long pole handle 24. Scratch or scrape 25. Programmer’s bane 28. Pocket bread 30. Chew the fat or chat 35. It will 37. Literary “through” 39. Peter in Russian

40. “In ____ of” 41. *Behind Wilson sisters, this group rose to prominence in 1970s 43. Japanese soup 44. Treeless plain 46. Affirm 47. A bunch, often followed by “of” 48. Inhabitant of republic on southwestern shores of Arabian Peninsula 50. *”Heat of the Moment” band 52. ___ Luis Obispo 53. Similar in quality 55. Some pop-up online 57. *Founding member of legendary British band 60. *”___ ____ Rock and Roll” 64. *Rock and Roll, e.g. 65. Not divisible by two 67. *New _____, formerly Joy Division 68. Sometimes precedes “nonsense” 69. Motion of assent 70. Period from Dec. 24 to Jan. 6, pl. 71. Cook slowly

72. *”Owner of a Lonely Heart” band 73. Farley’s side-kick in “Tommy Boy” DOWN 1. *”Let’s do the time ____ again” 2. Detected by olfactory organ 3. Ice crystals or frost 4. Some keep others on a short one of these 5. Tire brand 6. *The Beach Boys’ “Don’t Worry ____” 7. DNA transmitter 8. *Aerosmith song with one-word title 9. “Get a ____!” 10. Exhibiting vigorous good health 11. Added to, commonly followed by “out” 12. Poetic “ever” 15. *Popular R&B style of 1950s and 1960s 20. Archie Bunker’s wife 22. French lake 24. Single-file procession 25. *”It’s still Rock and Roll” to him 26. Being of service 27. Flash of light 29. Titaness who was mother of Helios,

Selene, and Eos in Greek mythology 31. Jodie Foster’s “____ Island” 32. Laertes and Fortinbras to Hamlet, e.g. 33. Like ship away from harbor 34. *Mr. Dynamite 36. Anything half-moon shaped 38. Mine deposits 42. *Chuck Berry went to prison after one 45. Medieval siege weapon 49. *___ & Tina Turner 51. Software plug-ins 54. Literary technique 56. Razor sharpener 57. *”I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” singer 58. Initial stake 59. What Jack’s beanstalk did 60. Made in Vegas 61. It turns on a light bulb? 62. Mix together 63. Gaelic 64. *”Hop on the bus, ___” 66. John or Jane___



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palm street perspective

slo city, cal poly partners in diversity colloquium By SLO City Councilman, John Ashbaugh


n Monday, February 6, I was honored to be invited to participate in the Diversity Colloquium at the Performing Arts Center at California Polytechnic State University. This event gathered energetic and enthusiastic faculty, students, and community members under the banner, “Celebrating Diversity.”

Our purpose for this Colloquium was expressed in the words of a City Proclamation delivered by Mayor Jan Marx to Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong: “to affirm the on- and off-campus virtues of living and learning in a diverse culture.” It was significant that Cal Poly reached out to the larger community, with the City represented by Mayor Marx and myself. Within the audience of about 800 in the Cohan Center auditorium were a kaleidoscope of ethnicities. Participants included representatives of the Anti-Defamation League, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and many other local non-profit organizations. The colloquium featured a keynote address by Paul Gardullo, curator of the new Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. This facility will begin to rise on a 5-acre site just northeast of the Washington Monument, and is scheduled to open in 2015. The colloquium also honored Joe Schwartz, a 98-year old folk photographer who lives in Atascadero. Joe was born in 1913 in Brooklyn, and frequently encountered anti-Semitism and racism in the hard streets of Kingsboro. His exquisite black-and-white photography documents the 20th century story of race relations from the Harlem Renaissance of the 1930s, through the Great Depression, the Civil Rights era of the 1950s and 60s, and into the digital age. Joe’s extraordinary body of work will become part of the permanent Smithsonian collection at the National Museum of African American History and Culture. The audience at the PAC was spellbound while a slide show presented a collection of Joe’s photographs set to the music of Louis Armstrong and other great jazz musicians of the 30s. When it concluded, Joe was given a standing ovation at his seat in the dress circle. Increasing Diversity Demands Attention My wife and I first moved to San Luis Obispo in 1977. At that time, it would have been impossible to imagine a gathering at Cal Poly to celebrate diversity. The university, and the city as a whole, reflected a demographic pattern that was very white—few minorities among any age cohort, including ours. The university’s enrollment was just beginning to reflect the demographic and policy changes of the 1970s and ’80s that would result in a growing multi-cultural presence among both students and staff. Yet change would come slowly and, for many, grudgingly: This was a campus, after all, where the Legislature had excluded women during the ’30s and ’40s, only permitting women to enroll again in 1956! M A R C H


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Today, enrollment at Cal Poly still does not reflect the state as a whole: White students comprise about 63% of the enrollment, while statewide, whites are only 40% of the population. Latino students at Cal Poly are about 13% of the student body, and African Americans less than 1%; statewide, Latinos are about 37% with African Americans at 6%. Diversity issues at Two’s A Team by Joe Schwartz Cal Poly, and within our larger community, involve more than just numbers: Students of color often hear racial slurs, and frequently encounter uninformed opinions that imply they are only “allowed” to enroll because of Affirmative Action. Here’s some news for those who give voice to such ignorance: Affirmative action was ended in California many years ago as a result of case law and legislative action. Cal Poly is one of the most selective public universities in the nation, and any student who is admitted has clearly earned their place by demonstrated academic excellence and/or promise. We can be grateful that this generation of students, FINALLY, is less afflicted by racial bias than those before it. Students and young people today are also more accepting of differing sexual orientation or gender identities, more willing to look beyond the superficial traits of nationality or immigration status. In our increasingly globalized world, these students know that the world they are inheriting is one where what counts is what you—we—can do as individuals to add value to the world. The organizer of the 2012 Diversity Colloquium was Harvey Levenson of the Graphic Communication Department at Cal Poly. In his own words, Dr. Levenson summed it up: “It is my hope that this event represents an ongoing discussion on the virtues of living and learning in a diverse and inviting community via seminars, workshops, town meetings, discussion groups, and related events on- and off-campus throughout the year and, yes, capped off by an annual conference.” I’m looking forward to next year’s colloquium, which will celebrate another year of progress on diversity issues at Cal Poly, and in the city as a whole.



The Magazine of Downtown San Luis Obispo


W h a t ’s U p New Business News

March 2012

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but the walkways are smooth and improved for ith the vernal equinox just around pedestrians, strollers and wheelchairs as well. the corner, at the Downtown Association we’re already geared up for the annual spring-summer slate of activities ith construction completion you’ve come to anticipate and enjoy: special anticipated this month, subject to events at Thursday Night Farmers’ Market the weather, we will then begin like Main Stage entertainment, Bunny Trail— the process of installing LED lights in 24 with E. Bunny on hand, of course, Mothers’ trees in the project area. We have partnered Day Flower Giveaway, Law Enforcement and Deborah Cash, CMSM, with the City in this endeavor to bring light, Public Works nights, Downtown Brown’s Executive Director ambiance and security to the Downtown, Birthday and more. Bands will have been encouraging visitors and guests to stay longer selected for Concerts in the Plaza by the time you and businesses to stay open later in the evening hours. read this—14 Fridays in all this summer starting June 1. The Promotions office is buzzing and we o this end, we’ve launched “Light Up hope you’ll plan now to come Downtown often this Downtown,” a tree lighting sponsorship year to take part in the fun, then hang around and program. Anyone interested in sponsoring a enjoy all that Downtown businesses have to offer. tree to commemorate a loved one or honor a civic organization or cause is welcome to view our website hile you’re at it, definitely take a look at about the program. The site features information about the improvements underway along Higuera sponsorship and a map indicating where the trees between Morro and Garden streets. Much are and which ones are available. Like our previously of the sidewalk replacement and painting has been popular bench sponsorship program, we anticipate completed and not only is the effect visually appealing, this will gain a lot of interest, as the




On the Cover: It may be a false start, but it feels like spring has sprung, particularly at Thursday Night Farmers’ Market where you can stock up on beautiful fresh-cut flowers for your home--and get your produce, a delicious bite to eat and enjoy street entertainers at every intersection along Higuera while you're at it! Watch for the myriad of special events coming to the market as well as a strong showing of produce vendors as the weather warms up! Photo by Deborah Cash

Downtown Maintenance, Beautification and Lighting… M

Thank you for patronizing Downtown SLO during this project! For more information visit: or call 805-541-0286

…Keeping Downtown Beautiful!

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and education, and of course, fine tuning our annual events so they’re engaging and effective.

sponsorship is a one-time fee, with the Downtown Association providing maintenance and paying utility costs over the program’s 25-year life expectancy and includes bronze-plaque acknowledgment. Visit for more info.


ike pushing ‘frappé’ on the activities' blender, we’re also busy at work with Board Elections and a Retreat at the end of the month. It’s during these exercises that new leadership emerges with fresh ideas and enthusiasm about the direction of Downtown’s future, always an exhilarating time! Items the Board will be considering have to do with nightlife safety and improved economy, Downtown developments including Monterey Place, Marsh Street Commons, Garden Street Terraces and Chinatown, parking management



Before: A huge ficus tree on Higuera near Chorro underwent extreme pruning--both up top in the canopy and at the root level--to keep it in check and from lifting sidewalks. Photo by Deborah Cash

After: Pavement's poured, curb and gutter installed. All that's left is placement of a decorative tree grate (in the dark area) and lights in the tree! Photo by Joey Chavez

inally, a highlight of this month is our annual Beautification Awards Breakfast on March 2 where we’ll be handing out 37 honors to Downtown businesses for their efforts in keeping Downtown, well, beautiful. Culminating with the coveted Mayor’s Award, the accolades acknowledge a variety of measures from new construction and tenant improvements, to merchandising and maintenance, and special categories. The winners will be revealed at the event and will be posted on our website shortly thereafter.


o, as you can see, we’re “springing” into action, not a moment too early… around Downtown.

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N e w s go to law school to make her dream of becoming a lawyer come true.

Linda Currey Attorney-At-Law

Linda Currey, Owner 1026 Palm Street, Suite 216 Office: 805-540-3370 Cell: 805-591-0515 E-mail: Linda Currey is a new attorney to the San Luis Obispo area. Linda Currey Attorney-At--Law has only been open for about a year, but this one-woman law firm, specializing in juvenile defense cases, is running strong and is helping kids get back on track. Before attending law school at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, Currey spent 16 years living in Asia. During her time abroad, she taught English in Taiwan and helped to open an international kindergarten in Shanghai, China. In 2006, she decided it was time for her to return home and

Bello Mundo Café

Jennifer Martinez, Owner 980 Monterey Street 805-345-2155

Her passion for working with kids and her love of helping them get going back in the right direction is apparent, and she says she enjoys every minute of it. “I’m here to help and I care about helping them through it,” is how Currey describes her work. Currey works a lot with the juvenile court system in San Luis Obispo, but she also represents adults in criminal defense cases. It matters to her that she helps as many people as she can get past the hard times in their lives. Linda Currey Attorney-At-Law is located at 1026 Palm Street, Suite 216. Even if she is not in her office, you may call and leave a voicemail—she is ready to help. Ally Dahl Later down the road Martinez hopes that the café will be able to donate and sponsor projects whose aim is to make SLO an even happier place. Martinez describes Bello Mundo Café as “Quality without the Snobbery.” The customers are an eclectic mix of individuals, but they all are down-toearth, positive and appreciate quality.

If you are looking to sip on a quality cup of coffee and snack on a perfectly crafted cupcake while engaging in good conversation, then Bello Mundo Café This humble café encourages face-tois the place for you. Bello Mundo Café face conversation; for this reason it is a quaint, cozy café that is building Rachel Meadows, Ash Rexford & does not offer Wi-Fi. This unique feature relationships with the community through Jennifer Martinez allows for the customers to get to know the its always freshly-brewed coffee. five baristas, spark up a conversation with fellow coffee lovers, and discuss the local artwork that covers the walls. Bello Mundo Café owner Jennifer Martinez says she dreamt of one welcomes everyone and really lives up to its name “beautiful day opening a business that could give back to its world” in Spanish. It is a sanctuary where the people of SLO can community after talking to the boys that she worked with come and make friends and enjoy freshly brewed coffee and tea. in a correctional facility in Boston. They told her that if she really wanted to make a difference in their lives, Bello Mundo Café is located at 980 Monterey she should provide them with jobs and make a change Street. It is open 7:30 AM – 6 PM Monday – Friday in the community. On August 1, 2011 she opened Bello and 8 AM – 6 PM Saturday – Sunday. Mundo Café and is now seeing her dream come true. Ally Dahl

Liberty Café

Linda Derks, Owner Mikayla Morris, Manager 1074 Higuera Street 805-783-1074 The verdict is in and it is good news for all you hungry “slocals”—Liberty Café is now open—Downtown SLO’s only true deli! Liberty Café is located in the SLO County Government Center along Higuera Street and has been satisfying the stomachs of hard working employees and visitors since August 2011. It offers “grab and go” service, perfect for busy workers in the Downtown area. “You can expect consistency; the first time you come here it will be amazing and it will be every time after that too,”

says manager Mikayla Morris (pictured). Liberty Café is owned by the same people who have the popular Lincoln Market & Deli on Broad Street. Liberty Café offers specialty sandwiches, paninis, salads and soups. Breakfast burritos, pastries and locally roasted Joebella coffee are served all day long for early risers and breakfast food lovers. Enjoy patio seating, affordability and relaxation on your lunch break. Call-ins are welcome and soon you will be able to order ahead of time online. Next time you are Downtown and craving a deli sandwich, come try the popular Ranchero, Classic Club or Big Dipper subs at 1074 Higuera Street. Open Monday – Friday 7 AM – 3 PM. Ally Dahl


Our Schools:

education is missing from the debates By Dr. Julian Crocker, County Superintendent of Schools


he campaign for President has been marked by an absence of discussion about education. Granted the amount of money the federal government spends on elementary and secondary education is not very much when compared with other parts of the federal budget. However, education is often mentioned as critical to both economic recovery and to remaining competitive in the global economy. Beyond this general agreement that education is important, little else is being said. This lack of attention to K-12 education is even more puzzling since we are long overdue for the re-authorization of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2002. Since this law represented a most significant change in federal education policy, I would think that it would command more attention. Perhaps education will become a more central issue once the Republican Party selects its nominee and the Democrats move into full campaign mode. As a prelude to that hoped for discussion, here are some observations about NCLB to help guide our thinking.

interest in K-12 education was on special need students such as those students living in poverty or students with disabilities. Now all students figure in the accountability equation for schools. Clearly the role of the federal government has changed and this change needs to be part of the national political conversation. Positive Aspects of NCLB. The little public discussion about NCLB so far has tended to be critical of the law. While I certainly believe there are serious flaws in the law, there are also some positive aspects. Perhaps the most positive impact of the law is to require that schools highlight the academic performance of all students and to report the academic progress of various groups of students such as English language learners and those who live in poverty. The law also requires the performance of students by ethnicity be reported. These requirements have exposed an “achievement gap” between some of these groups and the “average” achievement of a school based on the combined scores. The


requirement for schools to “disaggregate” academic performance by groups, and holding schools accountable for these groups as well as the whole, I believe is a necessary step in addressing the needs of all students. Negative Aspects of NCLB. The most mentioned criticism of NCLB has been how schools are measured and determined to be successful or not. The law expects that all students will be at a B+ level in both Englishlanguage arts and math by 2014. There will be no failures. As laudable as this goal may be, it is clearly an impossible one to achieve. As 2014 approaches, more and more schools are deemed not to be making sufficient progress and being labeled as a “program improvement” school. I believe this creates confusion among parents and causes the school to devote increasing resources to trying to meet an impossible goal. For example, Nipomo Elementary School in the south county exceeded the state target score of 800 on the Academic Performance Index (API), but was designated as “program improvement” for a fourth year. Flamson Middle School in Paso Robles also exceeded the state target by 21 points, but was again designated as being in program improvement. The measurement system in the law needs to be based on an improvement model rather than a target model that all schools have to meet. These are but some of the issues that need serious discussion by both candidates as we approach the November presidential election.

Significance of the Law. I believe that NCLB is the most important action that the federal government has taken for K-12 education since the enactment of the first Elementary and Secondary Education Act in 1965 as part of President Johnson’s Great Society initiatives. Until NCLB, the focus of accountability was primarily on students. It was the student who had to deal with academic performance and the consequences of college admission or ability to get a job. NCLB shifted that accountability to schools and school districts. It is these institutions, not individual students that are now “graded” and assigned labels. This is a very significant change in American educational policy. The other important change that NCLB has brought is to make judgments about schools based on the educational achievement of all students, as well as special populations. Prior to NCLB, the federal government’s primary M A R C H


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Michael Childers’ work has always been difficult to categorize because he has never stayed with one genre of photography. The single note that does resonate through all his work is beauty. Whether photographing the great ballet dancers, extraordinary moments from theatrical productions, international movie legends, nudes, flowers or interior scenes; his awareness of beauty never fails. ICONS AND LEGENDS on exhibit at the Museum of Art Gray Wing, March 2nd – April 1st, includes work spanning Mr. Childers’ 40-year career. Many of the images come from his Melrose Avenue and Venice Beach studios where he photographed over 200 magazine covers. An opening reception to meet Mr. Childers will take place on Friday, March 2nd, from 6-9 p.m. in conjunction with Art After Dark. Hours are 11 – 5 daily. Closed Tuesdays. Free admission, donations appreciated.

SVRMC receives circle of excellence award

Tenet Healthcare Corporation [NYSE: THC] announced today that Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center has been named to the company’s 2012 Circle of Excellence. Sierra Vista, which won the award in 2010 as well, was only one of five Tenet hospitals nationally, and the only one in California, to earn this prestigious award. The Circle of Excellence honors Tenet hospitals that have achieved the highest levels of quality, service and operational performance. Key metrics used to evaluate the hospitals were patient, physician and employee satisfaction scores, clinical quality and financial performance.

canzona women’s ensemble concert


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Canzona Women’s Ensemble concludes its third season with a concert titled “A Celebration of Love” on Sunday afternoon, March 11th, at 4 p.m. at the United Methodist Church, 1515 Fredericks, SLO. The group is led by co-directors Cricket Handler and Jill Anderson and includes 21 singers accompanied by pianist Janis Johnson and cellist Anna Carey. Featured on the program will be classical pieces by such composers as Brahms, Faure, Holst and Martinu, as well as American folk music, a swing piece by Duke Ellington, and rousing gospel songs. Canzona will be joined on this concert by women from the Cuesta College choirs. Tickets are priced at $15 for general admission, $10 for students. Order by phone at (805) 542-0506 or online through; tickets will also be available at the door. The Rotary Club of SLO de Tolosa brings two acclaimed improv comedians, Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood, to the Performing Arts Center on March 24 and will be sponsored by Central Coast Mortgage Consultants. Tickets range from $30 to $75 and may be purchased at the Performing Arts Center box office or online at www. or call 756-2787. Mochrie and Sherwood are best known for their regular roles on ABC’s hit comedy show, Whose Line Is It Anyway? This is the club’s major fundraiser for the year and they are hoping to net over $30,000, which is distributed to local non-profits, and to further Rotary International’s mission to eradicate polio worldwide. For more information call Rick Owens at 215-9009.

PG&E grant improves lighting in grover beach



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NEW TO TOWN? At a recent City Council meeting, representatives from Pacific Gas and Electric Company presented Kathy Petker, Parks and Recreation Director, with a check for $10,275, for energy efficient lighting at sports courts, including tennis and basketball. The grant was awarded through a competitive process with the company’s Charitable Contributions program and will be used to replace existing lamps with more energy efficient lamps that use less wattage. The new lamps are expected to save the City over 40% in annual expenses and support energy sustainability.

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irish folk music by the bay

Local father-son duo, Young Ireland, will be showcasing their original Irish folk music along with special musical guests on Sunday, March 18th, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. This exciting event will take place at the Red Barn—South Bay Community Park in Los Osos at 4 p.m. A $10 Donation is suggested. All ages are welcome! Young Ireland (Patrick and Michael O’Hara/guitar, bodhran and vocals) will perform original Irish folk songs as well as classic Irish favorites with special guests Patrick Pearson (of Cuesta Ridge, Pitch and Rythm/guitar and vocals), Bob Liepman (of Bob and Wendy/cello and mandocello) and Dana Pearson (of Pitch and Rhythm/flute). To sample Young Ireland’s music, please go to

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Catholic Healthcare West (CHW), the fifth largest health system in the nation, recently announced that it has changed its name to Dignity Health as part of a governance restructure that will position the organization to succeed in a changing health care environment. Local hospitals include: Marian Medical Center, French Hospital Medical Center (FHMC), and Arroyo Grande Hospital. “This name and structure reflect who we are and what we stand for,” said Sr. Judy Carle, vice chair of the Dignity Health Board of Directors and a Sister of Mercy. “The value of dignity is embedded in our culture. Our mission, vision and values were all formed out of the recognition of the inherent dignity of each person. We are confident that our vision for the organization will be achieved.” A special Olive Tree was planted in front of French Hospital commemorating CHW’s 25th anniversary and the name change to Dignity Health. Pictured above is FHMC’s CEO Alan Iftiniuk and Board President, Jim Copeland.

christopher meadows paramedic scholarship

Mayra Cazares and Robert McCain have been selected as the 2012 recipients of the Christopher Meadows Memorial Paramedic Education Scholarship. Cazares and McCain are both currently enrolled in the Central Coast Paramedic Program at Cuesta College and work as emergency medical technicians at San Luis Ambulance Service. Cazares, McCain, and other local paramedic students applied for the $3,000 memorial scholarship, which is awarded annually to Central Coast EMS workers pursuing paramedicine careers. This is the first year that the scholarship has gone to two students. These education grants honor the memory of local emergency medical worker Christopher Meadows who was lost in the line of duty.

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alan’s draperies 544-9405 2012

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st. patrick’s day special dinner St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated with a corned beef and cabbage dinner and all the trimmings plus dessert at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, 501 Fair Oaks Avenue, Arroyo Grande, from 4 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 17th. Dinner tickets are $3 for children under 13, $6 for seniors and $7 for adults and will be on sale beginning February 28 after Masses on Saturday and Sunday, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the church office Monday through Friday. $5 tickets for the cash drawing with awards of $1000 for first prize, $500 for second prize and $250 for third prize will also be on sale along with door prize tickets. Please contact Grace Ramsay, Event Coordinator, at 458-1512 for further information.



eye on Business

Citizens of the year add to community vitality By Maggie Cox, Barnett Cox & Associates

Juhnke family: Dave and Sharon with sons Chris and Drew


Juhnke was surprised to see his twin sons in the audience when the Chamber announced he was Citizen of the Year.

e have just finished citizen of the year season in SLO County and it’s a time I always enjoy. It’s so gratifying to read about the many people honored community-by-community and get a real sense of how their handson efforts shape the places we live.

ago he led the capital campaign that helped put Prado Day Center on firm ground. More recently, his work assisted the SLO county YMCA make its way through challenging financial times and not only achieve overall fundraising goals, but also raise $30,000 in one month to cover operational costs needed to remain open.

San Luis attorney Dave Juhnke of Sinsheimer Juhnke McIvor and Stroh was the selection of the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce. I’ve had fun working with Dave over the years and know firsthand just how deserving he is of the citizen accolades. I think after 25 years of service to the local community, it’s fitting to give him a couple of hundred words in this month’s column. And I hope other locally honored citizens know the same appreciation is offered to them.

Dave’s family and friends say that his favorite volunteer roles were those related to youth sports, especially when his now-college aged sons were young and he coached soccer, little league or basketball.

I met Dave and his wife Sharon years ago when our children were in grade school and we were working on a fundraiser for Cal Poly Arts. He had a beyond-demanding day job but was nonetheless a ready volunteer for any number of causes. Dave has a long list of organizations he served as a board member, many times a president and always a tireless participant. He has been the chair of the Red Cross, the SLO Literacy Council and the Economic Vitality Corporation, as well as the SLO Chamber of Commerce and two terms at the helm of the governing board for Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center. What the resume of organizations served doesn’t communicate is the heart and passion Dave brings to his community involvement. When he says “yes” to a cause, 110 percent commitment follows—and amazing results are produced. For instance, Dave played a vital role in helping to keep the doors open for two local non-profits in our community. A number of years

What it all adds up to is this: direct and lasting impact on the character of our community. Consider the number of our children and seniors who use YMCA programs; the hundreds of kids we see on the Damon Garcia sport fields on sunny weekends. Count the many families offered service and hope through the Prado Day Center; immigrants mastering English through the Literacy Council and fledgling businesses given the support needed to make it here, and we start to get a picture of the real fabric of life on the Central Coast. People like Dave Juhnke and other honored citizens throughout the county are dedicated to making popular phrases like “quality of life” and “happiest place on earth” ring true for everybody. And for that, we say thank you.

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COMMUNITY iditarod, known as The Last Great Race, kicks off March 3 in Alaska with over 1,000 dogs in teams heading from Anchorage to Nome.

M ARCH Almanac

this year Iditarod fans can subscribe to a GPS Tracker that follows the teams 24 hours a day over the 1,100-mile race.

By Phyllis Benson “Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine to the soul..” --- Luther Burbank

our neighbor wants a GPS on his little husky. She is an escape artist, digging under fences, scrambling over gates, and racing miles in wild play. Now he knows why her former owner gave her up with a sympathetic handshake and a parting, “Good luck.” century: On March 6, the Oreo celebrates its 100th birthday. The world’s favorite cookie has sold over 400 billion Oreo cookies since March 6, 1912.

humor month is here with chuckles, snorts, and giggles. Victor Hugo said, “Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.”

quipster: A friend will share an Oreo. A best friend will share their

march celebrates National Wildlife Week. Even the smallest yard hosts hummingbirds and thumb-size frogs.

daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. on March 11. Set those timekeepers forward an hour. Our jeweler says do it the night before and do them all at once.

march 1872: Yellowstone National Park became the world’s first national park.

over 3 million people a year visit Yellowstone with its 200 geysers, 10,000 hot springs, and resident wildlife.

march 7: Arbor Day is celebrated on Luther Burbank’s birthday.

The California horticulturist developed nectarines, plumcots, and freestone peaches. Every year enthusiasts plant trees for the event and wait patiently for the shade and harvest.

during march madness, basketball dominates sports news. Colleges across the nation compete for the championship. coach George Raveling said, “I know the Virginia players are smart

last Oreo.

musician victor borge said, “I don’t mind going back to daylight saving time. With inflation, the hour will be the only thing I’ve saved all year.” march 17 is Saint Patrick’s Day. mission legend says the cliff swallows return to San Juan Capistrano on March 19, St. Joseph’s Day.

swallows are fickle. These days former Capistrano birds fly from their winter Argentine home and land in Southern California at resort lakes and country clubs.

because you need a 1500 SAT to get in. I have to drop bread crumbs to get our players to and from class.”

our bird watcher is singing an old song with new words, “When the swallows come back to Capistrano, or Big Bear Lake, or Chino …”

rat fink: Ed “Big Daddy” Roth was born in Beverly Hills on March 4, 1932. He customized hot rods, designed outrageous motorcycles, and financed his work with the bulging-eyed Rat Fink cartoon character.

the garden is blooming, dogs sniff for voles, and kittens catapult after butterflies. Take time for a spring fever break.

Zippo: George Blaisdell founded Zippo Manufacturing in 1932. His product was a sturdy wind-resistant lighter that could be used with one hand. The company has shipped more than 400 million lighters with its lifetime guarantee, “It works or we fix it free.”

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Your Family, Your Future 1862 South Broadway, Suite 100 Post Office Box 1848 Santa Maria, California 93456 Tel: 805-922-6901 Toll-Free: 800-244-4183 Fax: 805-922-4055

“Let us help you plot a solid course for 2011. Please call for a fresh portfolio review.” Stephen P. Maguire


Chad Silva Financial Consultant

Securities offered through JHS Capital Advisors, Member FINRA/SIPC. Maguire Investments and JHS Capital Advisors are not affiliated.

March 2012 Journal Plus  

March 2012 Journal Plus

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