THE ACTION ISSUE SOUTHBAY.GOLDENSTATE.IS
New Wave WORLD SURF LEAGUE’S ERIK LOGAN MERGES PROFESSION WITH PERSONAL PASSION
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Left to right: Melanie Friedlander, MD, Paula Eboli, MD, David Chan, MD, Amirhossein Paymon Mahfoozi, MD
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26 SERVING GOLD Olympic medalist Alix Klineman
42 COMEBACK KIDS Torrance Little League at the World Series
46 THE FUTURE IS GREEN Sam Torres and Grades of Green
50 POWER BREAKFAST Chef Amber’s Frittata
66 DELICIOUS DECADE Strand House at 10
82 MISSIONS ACCOMPLISHED Weekends in San Juan Capistrano & San Luis Obispo
92 FIGHT FOR LIFE PanCAN’s Julie Fleshman
100 SEEN Who’s Who Around Town
138 LAST WORD Take Me Out
GETTING ON BOARD
For Manhattan Beach resident Erik Logan,
For 22 years veteran Dick Freeman has
becoming the CEO of the World Surf League
skimmed through South Bay waters five
was a serendipitous journey.
days a week—sans wetsuit. We explain why.
TWICE THE IMPACT
A new South Bay resident pilots the
Two local designers bring adaptive apparel
latest chapter in El Segundo’s legendary
to the active South Bay woman.
aerospace history: the U.S. Space Force’s Space Systems Command.
THE RAINBOW CONNECTION
Spectacular local listings
Based in San Francisco, a lifelong skater
transforms recycled skateboards into func-
A Southbay contributor and equestrian trades
tional (and rideable) works of art.
in her saddle for the driver’s seat and gets a rush of adrenaline on the racetrack.
70 DOWN THE LINE Two young South Bay players take the court in
a quest to become the next tennis superstars.
Erik Logan Photographed by Jeﬀ Berting
Jordan’s Keck Effect
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Forward Momentum When we first debuted the Action Issue last year, there
summer in Tokyo. I look at Julie Fleshman, who expe-
was a natural inclination to devote those pages to the
rienced a personal loss that motivated her to become a
incredible athletes in the South Bay. After all, sports and
leader in the fight against pancreatic cancer. Then there’s
fitness connect our communities in profound ways—
young Samantha Torres, a volunteer with Grades of
from youth programs to wellness groups to professional
Green who hopes to leave the world and its climate better
teams. It’s no wonder so many of our favorite players
than the one she inherited.
call the Beach Cities home. As we started to put together this year’s edition, my
These and many others in this issue bring action to life in varied but admirable ways. It’s that passion and
appreciation of the word “action” expanded. Especially
drive—whether showing up for an ocean swim every day
in the wake of a pandemic that triggered immediate ac-
for two decades or learning to surf to counterbalance the
tion in all our lives, the value in “getting it done” seems
pressures of professional life—that keep the collective
more relevant than ever before. As we shift our recharged
heartbeat of this community ticking. I saw it during the
resourcefulness to new endeavors, what growth and
pandemic, and I know I will see it in the years to come.
strength from the last 20 months do we wish to retain … and how do we want to expend that energy? I look at some of the subjects in this issue for inspiration. There’s Alix Klineman, who turned an early setback into a quest for Olympic gold—one she achieved this
SHAUN TOLSON | Shaun is a luxury lifestyle journalist who has traveled the world over the past 15 years in search of captivating stories. An avid golfer, Shaun has teed it up in a dozen countries and played some of the world’s most revered courses. He is a loyal supporter of all Boston-area sports teams.
JARED SAYERS | Jared is a byproduct of the salty waters of the Southern California coastline. He is a South Bay native who somehow found his way into media and publishing, only to discover a love for writing. His subjects vary but all hold one common truth: Their appetite for life is large, and they choose to lead extraordinary lives in very uncommon places.
KAT MONK | Kat is a Manhattan Beach native who has been photographing children and families in the South Bay professionally since 1995. She has a 1,500-square-foot studio space that includes a garden. If Kat is not behind a camera, she can probably be found watching one of her four kids play sports or music.
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NOVEMBER 2021 Under the Spell For World Surf League CEO Erik Logan, surfing becomes sanctuary. More on page 30.
Serving Gold MANHATTAN BEACH’S ALIX KLINEMAN RETURNS HOME AFTER A MEDAL-WINNING PERFORMANCE IN TOKYO. Written by Kat Monk
At 6’5”, Manhattan Beach native Alix Klineman always
she started a regimen of consuming beach volleyball.
had a dream to compete in the Olympics. After playing
In addition to intense training, she educated herself by
indoor volleyball for Mira Costa High School, Stanford
watching videos and talking to anyone knowledgeable
University, Team USA and professionally overseas,
of the sport.
Alix took off her volleyball shoes to dip her toes in the golden sand. She quickly discovered that sand is a much different
PHOTOGRAPHED BY SEAN M. HAFFEY/GETTY IMAGES AND ELSA/GETTY IMAGES
beast to tackle and is not nearly as easy as players make
Along the Olympic path, the pair incurred a loss at the finals of the Beach Volleyball World Championships in Hamburg, Germany, against 6’5” player Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes from Canada. Although
it look. At first glance, many may think that indoor vol-
the A Team didn’t win the final, it was a defining mo-
leyball and beach volleyball are relatively similar—just
ment for Alix. She knew they had what it took to play at
fewer players. However, moving through and jumping
in sand makes it a much different playing experience.
Soon after, the pandemic would upend the world and
After a chance encounter at the Stagecoach Festival,
cancel most events. The bright line for the A Team was
Olympic medalist April Ross challenged Alix to improve
that the pandemic precipitated a one-year delay of the
her game and dangled the opportunity to play together
2020 Tokyo Olympics to August 2021. The delay was a
on the professional circuit. The winner of two medals
blessing in disguise as it afforded them an extra year of
thus far—silver with Jen Kessy and bronze with Kerri
preparation. Alix and April were the first team to lock
Walsh—April was a highly sought-after defender in
in their ticket to Japan.
beach volleyball. An opportunity Alix was not about to
The A Team played seven games to make it into the
pass up, this challenge provided the necessary motiva-
Olympic finals. The weather proved to be quite burden-
tion to dive in 100%.
some, with temperatures well over 100º—making
The night before Alix officially met April to discuss
movement in the sand even harder. They also played a
the reality of their potential partnership, Alix texted a
couple of their matches in the pouring rain. Alix said
friend explaining how nervous she was and confided
these matches were more advantageous, though ex-
that maybe April wouldn’t like her. Inadvertently, Alix
tremely competitive, because the rain quelled the heat.
sent the text to April rather than the friend. April felt it
April was virtually shut out at the 2016 Olympics in
was this type of character, combined with her playing
Rio and rarely received a serve. In Tokyo she started to
potential, that would be well suited for a 2020 Olympic
see opposing teams serving her—a testament to how
run. The “A Team” was born.
much Alix had improved since their partnership began
Dedication and preparation became Alix’s game as
just a few short years before.
competitive Australian team. The Australians appeared to struggle on their own serve. Typically having the serve is an advantage, but as they served the A Team, they were consistently met with an “in-system” return of the ball. In system means without error—a very smooth and consistent pass, set and hit. Alix and April took the gold medal with final scores of 21-15 and 2116, having only dropped one set the entire tournament. Adorned with their new hardware, April told Alix, “Take this in, every moment of it. It is the best part of the Olympics.” With that, Alix achieved her goal of not just competing at the Olympics but bringing home the gold. With the games behind her, she is tying the knot with former professional hockey player and fiancé Teddy Purcell. Could we see the A Team in Paris 2024? More to come! ■
“ALIX AND APRIL TOOK THE GOLD MEDAL WITH FINAL SCORES OF 21-15 AND 21-16, HAVING ONLY DROPPED ONE SET THE ENTIRE TOURNAMENT.”
PHOTOGRAPHED BY SEAN M. HAFFEY/GETTY IMAGES AND ELSA/GETTY IMAGES
Olympic finals were played against a talented and
getting on board FOR ERIK LOGAN, BECOMING THE CEO OF THE WORLD SURF LEAGUE WAS A SERENDIPITOUS JOURNEY. Written by Shaun Tolson | Photographed by Jeff Berting
Almost a decade ago, Erik Logan
Studios, was hired as the new network’s president. The
stood in the sand at El Porto and
fledgling network had reached a critical point in its ex-
braced himself for what was to come. Wearing a brand-new wetsuit and clutching a borrowed surfboard, he stared out at the waves breaking not far from shore. The midmorning
istence only a year after it had launched, and Erik was at the helm—attempting to steer it through challenging developments to cement its long-term success. In 2011 Erik moved to Manhattan Beach and initially watched from afar, observing how the ocean served as the nucleus of the community and its culture. Those observations motivated him to embrace that culture and
waves that Saturday weren’t anything
the Manhattan Beach lifestyle. He also recognized that
special—“They were all pretty
if he was going to achieve professional success during
standard South Bay closeouts,” the now 50-year-old recalls—but that didn’t matter. Erik was preparing to do something he had never done before. He was about to take his first steps into the ocean.
that stage of his career, he needed a sanctuary from the corporate stress and pressure that he felt on a daily basis. Surfing became that sanctuary. If you’re wondering how a 40-year-old man could take up surfing after spending his entire adult life terrified of the ocean, the answer is—surprisingly—not that complicated. Erik decided that a surfboard and wetsuit could provide the necessary counterbalance in his life simply by watching other people ride waves along
“I grew up in a landlocked state,” he says, “and I
Manhattan Beach. “I thought it looked interesting and
was terrified of the ocean. I wouldn’t go in. In fact, I
fun,” he recalls. “It wasn’t anything more than that.
wouldn’t go in lakes if I couldn’t see the bottom.”
Eventually, I just decided to give it a go.”
The origin of Erik’s deep-water phobia had nothing
As Erik stepped into the frothy surf on that Saturday
to do with his Oklahoma City upbringing. The Midwest
morning in March 2012, the water chilled his feet,
wasn’t to blame at all. Instead, it was Steven Spielberg’s
which sparked a surge of anxiety that rushed through
fault—at least indirectly. Erik, like thousands of other
the rest of his body. (Overcoming a decades-long fear
people, was traumatized by the film Jaws.
was not without its challenges.) However, as Erik
After watching Spielberg’s masterful, killer shark-
waded deeper into the Pacific, his wetsuit compensated
focused thriller, Erik spent the next several decades
for the ocean’s brisk temperature—and that alone put
of his life avoiding the ocean. “That movie had a
him at ease.
profound effect on me,” he recalls. But in early 2012,
“It felt like a suit of armor for me,” he says. “I im-
he was tasked with a daunting professional challenge.
mediately felt safe. That allowed me to start to experi-
Only one year earlier, The Oprah Winfrey Show had
ence emotionally what the ocean had to offer.”
filmed its final episode. When the show concluded,
Those benefits of the ocean, along with the cathartic
Harpo Studios and Discovery, Inc. created the Oprah
elements that surfing can provide, are in Erik’s opinion
Winfrey Network as a platform to continue delivering
largely existential. “It’s an individual, soul-connecting,
Winfrey’s message and vision.
spiritual moment where you have an opportunity to ride
Erik, who then served as the co-president of Harpo
raw energy,” he says. “The journey of catching waves
and feeling and riding that energy is never the same
fun and unique television programs that can introduce
whenever you do it. Every wave is different and has
surfing to an audience of millions of people who may
been created thousands of miles away. There are things
have otherwise never been exposed to it.
in the world that are much bigger than you, and I find
To date, the organization has produced almost two
that the ocean is a great grounding mechanism in that
dozen original series, but it’s also spearheaded a reality
way for me.”
TV show on ABC called The Ultimate Surfer. The show
By the end of his self-guided introduction to surfing that day, Erik was captivated. Almost immediately
live at Kelly Slater’s surf ranch and compete for prize
thereafter he searched for nearby surfing instructors
money and a spot on the WSL. Apple TV is also set to
and began to take lessons—something he continues to
air a documentary series that brings viewers behind the
do almost 10 years later.
scenes of what it’s like to live and compete on the WSL.
Although Erik discovered surfing’s spiritual benefits,
the Pacific with a surfboard, he wouldn’t be in the posi-
porary escape he needed. “It allowed enough air and
tion to lead a global surfing league or grow the sport’s
light to come into my consciousness to try to be a better
popularity. In his estimation, he wouldn’t have a job at
president and to lead the network through some chal-
the WSL at all. “If you’re going to lead a global organi-
lenging times,” he says. “It gave me perspective on what
zation around a sport, regardless if it’s surfing or any-
I was working on, and that made me a better executive.”
thing else,” he asserts, “it’s critically important that you
career move. As last decade neared its end, Erik was
have a broad and deep understanding of that sport.” Erik recognizes that he’s in an enviable position,
ready for his next corporate challenge, and it was pre-
given that his profession overlaps with a personal pas-
sented to him in a World Surf League-wrapped package.
sion. But he also acknowledges that there was no way
Founded in 1976 and headquartered in Santa Monica,
for him to forecast such a development when he was
the World Surf League (WSL) is a global organization
drawn to the Pacific’s waves almost a decade ago. “The
that produces more than 180 surfing events throughout
universe will always provide you with what you need,”
the world. As Erik describes it, the WSL is “a sports
he says. “That’s one of the lessons I’ve learned in my
league with a media company wrapped around it.”
life, and that’s true for what surfing has done.”
In 2019 he joined the company as the head of its production studio. One year later, he was promoted to CEO. Looking back on his move to Manhattan Beach and
As for other lessons that Logan has learned throughout his life, one of the most significant occurred while he was serving as the president of Harpo Studios—
the exposure to surfing that it provided him, Erik rec-
though he acknowledges that it’s a mantra that can be
ognizes that those events were serendipitous. “I started
applied to all facets of life. “It’s the value of inten-
my journey of learning to surf, learning to appreciate
tionality,” he says. “Everything that you do as you
the ocean and falling in love with everything that it has
move through business has to be done with intention.
to offer,” he says. “That ultimately led me to become
Without that clarity, it’s really hard to measure success
the CEO of the World Surf League.”
In that role, Erik aims to grow the sport’s interna-
Needless to say, had Erik never bravely ventured into
the sport also successfully provided him with the tem-
Surfing also laid the groundwork for an eventual
chronicles a surfing competition where 14 contestants
Ten years ago, Erik was in need of an escape from the
tional popularity. One of the organization’s key initia-
stresses of his job. Today his occupation affords him
tives to accomplishing that hinges on the production of
the opportunity to strengthen the love of the sport that
“THE JOURNEY OF CATCHING WAVES AND FEELING AND RIDING THAT ENERGY IS NEVER THE SAME WHENEVER YOU DO IT. EVERY WAVE IS DIFFERENT AND HAS BEEN CREATED THOUSANDS OF MILES AWAY. THERE ARE THINGS IN THE WORLD THAT ARE MUCH BIGGER THAN YOU, AND I FIND THAT THE OCEAN IS A GREAT GROUNDING MECHANISM IN THAT WAY FOR ME.”
initially provided that escape. “It’s far deeper than I
broadens and deepens my appreciation for our athletes
could possibly articulate,” he says of his love for surfing
and the hundreds of people globally over the past four de-
and his position as the CEO of the WSL. “Even before I
cades who have put on professional surfing. It’s a privi-
was the CEO, this job had a different grounding and a
lege and an honor to do this job every day because I can
different feeling. It was a responsibility to do the best job
see the talent of our surfers and the love that they have
I could because of how much I cared, and also because I
for the sport. I can also see how our employees have sac-
knew how deeply our surfers and employees care.”
rificed unselfishly to make sure the sport can continue.”
He continues, “Being a part of this organization
Even though it seems that Erik has landed his dream
Erik with Kelly Slater; below, with Oprah Winfrey
job, it’s impossible to predict the path that his career might take or where he might be professionally 10 years from now. That being said, it’s clear that he’ll never be far from the ocean’s waves. “Whether I’m surfing, bodysurfing or in a kayak,” he says, “I just try to find as many different ways as possible to be in or around the ocean.” It’s a love story fitting for Hollywood . . . minus the killer shark. ■
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Commons, a new commercial kitchen and
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The innovative communal space has
The design of the Viking Commons was a collaborative process. Originally envisioned by school leadership and the board of trust-
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“The Viking Commons provides an important way for everyone in our school community to come together over a great
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“WE’VE REMOVED THE STRESS OF HAVING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT TO DO ABOUT LUNCH EVERY DAY AND INSTEAD PROVIDE AN ARRAY OF HEALTHFUL FOOD OPTIONS AT NO ADDED DAILY CHARGE IN A BEAUTIFUL SPACE TO MEET.”
“As a school committed to best practices
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in education, our campus design deliber-
Bright. “We’ve removed the stress of having
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each other the skills and attitudes neces-
to figure out what to do about lunch every
community. The Viking Commons is one of
sary for global citizenship. Vistamar believes
day and instead provide an array of health-
our most dramatic building upgrades since
there’s a better way to do high school—a
ful food options at no added daily charge in
the school was founded,” says Kris Rone,
conviction they are sharing at lunchtime
a beautiful space to meet.”
chair of Vistamar’s board of trustees and an
every day at the Viking Commons.
A healthy and balanced life is one of Vistamar’s core values—one that the Viking
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Why Vistamar? Reason #2: Challenging, innovative academics, dedicated faculty and a supportive community guarantee success.
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Comeback Kids TORRANCE HAD SOUTH BAY FANS CHEERING AS THEY TOOK THE FIELD AT THIS YEAR’S LITTLE LEAGUE WORLD SERIES. Written by Quinn Roberts | Photos courtesy of Little League Baseball and Softball
The cardiac kids. That became the nickname for the
and chemistry is because most of them had known
Torrance Little League All-Stars throughout the sum-
each other or been playing baseball together since
mer as the team navigated its way to the Little League
they were 4 years old. “I think our bond was the big-
World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Torrance
gest reason for our success,” says Dominic Golia. “I
was one of just 16 teams in the United States to make
originally decided not to play, but when some of the
guys on the team talked to me about how much fun we
The 11- and 12-year-olds easily advanced through their district tournament, but they came near the brink of elimination in both the Southern California and West
It wasn’t just the come-from-behind wins that made getting to Williamsport difficult. The entire coaching
the team to win five consecutive elimination games to
staff and team had to test negative for COVID-19 before
make it to the final. Torrance then won twice to ad-
every game during their three-month run to make sure
vance to the West Regional for the first time in its Little
they all could continue to play.
In the regional, which was held in San Bernardino,
“It was a grind because of the scheduling and testing, but once we made it to Williamsport all of that
Torrance again lost its opening game but managed to
faded away,” says Javier. “Our goal was to help develop
navigate its way to Williamsport by winning in extra
all of the kids, make sure they had fun and keep them
innings against Nevada. It then knocked off Utah and
engaged. It changed the perspective of the coaches. We
a team from Northern California to punch its ticket. It
wanted to nurture their talent and calm them down
marked the first time since 1994 that a team from Los
when things became stressful.”
Angeles County made it to Williamsport. “A lot of times we would fall behind early, only
Torrance started off winning their first two games against New Hampshire and Ohio but then lost their
to come back—which showed how special this team
next two in the double-elimination tournament to
is. I’ve never been a part of a team like that,” says
South Dakota and Ohio. While the team may not have
manager Javier Chavez, who got to experience every-
won the Little League World Series, the experiences the
thing with his son Christian. “The kids like having fun.
kids shared in the dorms and on the field are something
No one is too serious and they are all very easygoing,
that will never be duplicated.
which I think helped them on the field. When they were down runs, they would push each other.” Part of the reason the team had so much success
I decided to play.”
Region championships. Torrance lost its opener, forcing
would have and how important I would be to the team,
“Staying in the dorms was one of the coolest things,” says Levi Cornett. “We had pizza parties, and it is the nicest field I ever played on.”
One of the stories that encompasses the team’s
the students and teachers at their middle schools were
time in Williamsport was a day they had the afternoon
coming up to them asking what the experience was like
free after winning a game earlier that morning. With
and telling them how proud they were of them.
rain pouring down, the kids decided to take pieces of
A pizza party was held right after the team got back,
cardboard and slide down a giant hill right beyond the
and in the middle of September the city of Torrance
outfield fence. Their swim trunks and entire bodies
held a parade downtown to celebrate its success. Even
were covered in mud, but none of the kids cared.
before that, more than 400 people throughout the com-
The kids also got to meet some of their favorite professional baseball players when the Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Angels played in the Little League
munity donated $32,000 to help families of the players get to Williamsport to watch and support the kids. “I’m a firm believer in sports and team activities
Classic. The team took pictures with players and was
for kids and what it teaches them,” says Javier. “After
especially excited to meet Angels players Mike Trout
everything that has gone on, seeing all of them be
and Shohei Ohtani.
around each other and have fun working toward one
When the team returned to Torrance, it was right at
goal was great.” ■
the beginning of the school year. The players said all of
The Future is Green TODAY’S STUDENTS ARE TOMORROW’S ENVIRONMENTAL LEADERS. GRADES OF GREEN IS PROVIDING THE GUIDANCE THEY NEED. Written by Amber Klinck | Photographed by Monica Orozco
Sam Torres was in elementary school when she was first introduced to Grades of Green, a nonprofit that provides
won an Eco Grant. Sam introduced the first Grades of
powering them to become the environmental leaders
Green student-led club at Mira Costa High School and
of tomorrow. Today Sam is a senior at Mira Costa High
was named Best Student Leader through Grades of
School and more committed than ever to the organiza-
Green’s Student Recognition Awards. “Our students, whether they are pursuing business
ment that I didn’t know was there before,” she says.
or environmentalism or nonprofit work or govern-
“Sam is an absolute treasure,” notes Grades of
ment, they have these really strong leadership skills
Green’s marketing and communications director James
that they can then use to create environmental action
Saracini. “[She’s been with us] for a long time and has
and impact,” James says. “We’re empowering these
always been a shining star for Grades of Green.”
leaders so they can be prepared to deal with some of
What began in 2007 as a volunteer-based program
the challenges that are oncoming and create innovative
created to educate students on environmentalism by
solutions as we move forward into the new reality of
four Grand View Elementary School moms has evolved
the climate crisis.”
into a nonprofit organization that spans 47 states and 27 countries. “In total, we’ve impacted more than 670,000 stu-
During her junior year, Sam and her team channeled the power of social media to spread their message with a Meatless Monday campaign. “We challenged our
dents,” James points out. Students working with Grades
classmates or anyone in the South Bay to eat meat-
of Green serve their communities as environmental ad-
less on Mondays,” Sam explains. Then she and her
vocates when speaking publicly or addressing govern-
team partnered with a number of local businesses that
ment officials through focused campaigns designed to
donated goods as an incentive to those who partici-
raise awareness among their peers, and with hands-on
pated by posting their “Meatless Monday” meal on
events like beach and harbor cleanups.
Instagram. Everyone who posted was entered into a
What’s incredible is that while students are working to implement environmental change, they’re also
Last year her team’s Climate Solutions Campaign
mentorship and leadership training to students—em-
tion. “I found I had a passion for helping the environ-
student-led marketing campaigns.
raffle and was eligible to win the donated goods. “We were able to get around 40,000 interactions with
learning skills that will benefit them professionally
our campaign,” Sam notes. “It was a really awesome
regardless of the career they pursue. During her time
thing to see people get around a cause that we thought
with Grades of Green, Sam has had public speaking
was so important. If we were to shift to a more plant-
opportunities, she’s collaborated with other nonprof-
based way of eating as a society and use our land more
its and private businesses, and she’s participated in
efficiently, it would be much better for the environment.”
This year, Sam speaks on behalf of her fellow Grades of Green students at the Verte 2021 gala. Verte is a celebration of Mother Earth that includes a silent auction, dinner, awards and an after-party with dancing. The event is hosted by LAcarGuy at Audi Pacific. This year Grades of Green is introducing for the first time their Mother Earth Award honoring Kathy Kellogg Johnson. “Kathy is absolutely amazing,” James says. “She’s done incredible work, both domestically as well as globally, in her philanthropy.” The award is, in part, inspired by stories from Grades of Green students who credit their mothers as the source of their environmental engagement. “In the environmental movement, probably the most passionate and driving forces are women and mothers,” James says. “And they’re often the folks who are unrecognized. We find that it’s super important for us to have the Mother Earth Award to elevate the story of the women environmentalists who every day are taking action on the environment.” The Environmental Business Leadership Award goes to James Hartzberg. “James is absolutely incredible. He and LAcarGuy have been such big supporters of ours throughout the years,” James Saracini says. As a senior, Sam is thinking about her next steps. “I know that I for sure want to do something with environmental studies. I think marine science because I just really love the ocean.” But the work she’s done with Grades of Green has certainly made an impact, and she’s not done yet. “I want to stay involved and keep spreading awareness.” ■
Verte in action. Right: Grades of Green founders Shaya Kirkpatrick, Lisa Coppedge, Suzanne Kretschmer and Kim Lewand Martin
“OUR STUDENTS HAVE THESE REALLY STRONG LEADERSHIP SKILLS THAT THEY CAN THEN USE TO CREATE ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION AND IMPACT. WE’RE EMPOWERING THESE LEADERS SO THEY CAN BE PREPARED TO DEAL WITH SOME OF THE CHALLENGES THAT ARE ONCOMING AND CREATE INNOVATIVE SOLUTIONS AS WE MOVE FORWARD INTO THE NEW REALITY OF THE CLIMATE CRISIS.”
CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS HONOR ROLL
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Power Breakfast WE ASKED CHEF AMBER CAUDLE OF THE SOURCE CAFÉ TO SHARE A HEARTY YET HEALTHY MEAL TO FOLLOW UP YOUR MORNING WORKOUT. Photographed by Hailee Repko of CNW Agency
This frittata is high in protein and healthy fats and loaded with omegas. It’s low-glycemic and loaded with fiber— a great post-workout meal. The frittata is delicious hot, served with a large green salad, or it can be taken on the go and eaten cold. Frittatas are an easy meal-prep item and are a great way to use your leftover meats or veggies. For extra protein, add your favorite meat. Chef Amber Caudle prefers adding leftover ground bison!
CHEF AMBER’S FRITTATA Serves 4 1 delicata squash 2 tablespoons coconut oil
optional: add ½ pound cooked ground bison or meat of choice
2 cloves garlic, diced
transfer ingredients to a medium bowl. In a separate large bowl, whisk eggs, coconut milk and sumac together, then
1 small leek, sliced
Preheat oven to 350º. Grease a
whisk in pumpkin seeds and basil. Add
1 cup Swiss chard, roughly chopped
9-inch cast-iron skillet or an 8x8-
the warm veggies to the bowl and mix
¾ teaspoon sea salt
inch casserole pan with coconut oil or
well. Pour the entire mixture into the
½ teaspoon black pepper
avocado oil. Slice squash lengthwise and
greased pan and top it with tablespoon-
scrape the seeds out with a spoon. Discard
sized dollops of cheese, spaced evenly.
1 cup coconut milk
the seeds and slice the squash, skin on,
1 teaspoon sumac
into ½-inch thick crescents.
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
Add the oil, garlic, 1 cup of squash, leek,
6 basil leaves, finely chopped
Swiss chard, salt and pepper to a sauté
½ cup nondairy cheese or feta
pan and cook over medium heat 5 minutes
(suggestion: Miyoko’s vegan cheese)
until just softened. Remove from heat and
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the egg is set and doesn’t jiggle in the middle. Top with more chopped basil before serving.
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command performance A NEW SOUTH BAY RESIDENT PILOTS THE LATEST CHAPTER IN EL SEGUNDO’S LEGENDARY AEROSPACE HISTORY: THE U.S. SPACE FORCE’S SPACE SYSTEMS COMMAND. Written by Diane E. Barber | Photographed by Shane O’Donnell
In keeping with El Segundo’s globally
aerospace industry, and many key partners reside
acclaimed history as the aerospace
within close proximity to Los Angeles Air Force Base
capital of the world, this spring the Pentagon named the Los Angeles Air Force Base on Aviation Boulevard home to the U.S. Space Force’s Space Systems Command (SSC).
where and is crucial to be able to successfully operate in the now congested space domain.” Guetlein hails from a military family and a small town in Oklahoma. His grandfather served in the Army during World War II, and his father also served in the Army during the late 1960s. “When I was 3, I told my mom I
Activated in August, SSC headquarters
was going to join the Air Force,” he shares. “She thought
manages an $11 billion annual space
it was a phase and I that I would grow out of it.” After graduating from high school, he immediately
acquisition budget for the U.S.
joined the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) at
Department of Defense. The team
Oklahoma State University. “It wasn’t until I pulled out
of more than 10,000 military and
of the driveway to go to college that my dad realized I
civilian professionals is charged with developing, acquiring, launching and sustaining military space systems, including overseeing launches from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Santa
was serious,” he remembers. “I was the first one in the family to get a college degree and to make the military a career.” The Pentagon’s strategic decision to select El Segundo as one of three U.S. Space Force field command locations lends additional prestige and notoriety to Southern California and its aerospace hub, which
Barbara County and Cape Canaveral
includes the Air Force base, the Aerospace Corporation
Air Force Station in Florida.
(a federally funded research and development center),
When Lt. Gen. Michael Guetlein was named commander of SSC in August, it marked his fourth assignment at the base during the course of his career. He re-
PHOTOS COURTESY OF U.S. SPACE FORCE
and SSC. This proximity to partners is not offered else-
research universities and the country’s leading defense companies (Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin). “El Segundo was selected as the home of SSC because
located to the South Bay from Virginia, where he served
we must be where innovation is happening, and that
as the deputy director to the National Reconnaissance
is right here in one of the nation’s largest hubs of
Office, which supports the U.S. Intelligence Community
aerospace technology and talent,” says Guetlein. “The
and Department of Defense. There he was involved with
fact is, our industry partners are innovating at unprec-
managing strategic and tactical operations, Air Force
edented rates, and in many cases they are outpacing
personnel and resources, and he served as a senior
our demand signals. The Space Force and SSC specifi-
advisor on military matters. His wife, Rachel, is cur-
cally must harvest that innovation in order to accelerate
rently completing a clinical mental health counseling
the space capabilities we are delivering to the nation
residency before joining him next year.
and to our warfighters. The partnerships we have and
“Returning to Los Angeles Air Force Base and this
are making with the industry are the key to SSC and the
community is a great honor,” says Guetlein. “El
Space Force being able to enhance resiliency in space in
Segundo has a long and storied history within the
the face of determined competitors. This is where we
are able to perform our mission of pioneering, developing and delivering sustainable joint space war-fighting capabilities that defend the nation and its allies while disrupting adversaries in the contested space domain the best.” According to Guetlein, while the U.S. currently outpaces the rest of the world in space capabilities, our country’s adversaries seek to counter those capabilities. SSC was designed to respond to the threat and deliver world-class capabilities to the warfighters ahead of the threat. “As a nation we rely on space in nearly every aspect of our daily lives, and our warfighters are dependent on our space capabilities to counter aggression around the globe,” he says. “SSC is about innovation and agility, and success is seeing us rapidly and effectively partner with our allies, industry and other U.S. government agencies to revolutionize the way we do business while fielding innovative solutions to problems. The fact is, the threat in space is real, and in order for us to remain ahead of our adversaries we need to leverage current partnerships and maintain a unity of effort while looking for new, innovative ways to tackle tough space-
“I LOOK FORWARD TO HELPING CREATE A UNITY OF EFFORT THAT SEES NATIONS AROUND THE WORLD WORKING TOGETHER TO ENHANCE THE SECURITY, STABILITY, SAFETY AND SUSTAINABILITY OF SPACE FOR THE BENEFIT OF EACH OF US.”
related problems.” When asked what he is looking forward to in his new
and relief efforts. Additionally, our personnel work hard
role as SSC’s commander, he replies, “I think every
and play hard—from participation in sports leagues,
military commander looks forward to being able to
coaching, mentoring and recreational gatherings, you’ll
serve alongside some of the best and brightest indi-
find members of Space Systems Command and the Los
viduals our nation has to offer. But I am most looking
Angeles Air Force Base pretty much everywhere around
forward to seeing how each of them works to innovate,
town. Space affects all of our daily lives, and we’re all
acquire and field out-of-this-world-class capabilities
in this together.”
for our nation’s newest, leanest and most technologi-
Off duty, Guetlein is an avid outdoor enthusiast and
cally advanced service: the United States Space Force.”
enjoys hiking, camping, the beach and wine tasting. “I
Guetlein proudly shares that his team of military,
love to take advantage of the variety of outdoor venues
government civilian and contract employees are among
California and this community have to offer,” he says.
some of the South Bay’s most loyal citizens, and pro-
As for what he enjoys most about living and working in
viding family support is an important part of military
the South Bay, he shares, “The friendly people and the
service. “Our personnel are active in many aspects of
community engagement—from volunteering at their
Welcome home, Lt. Gen. Guetlein. We appreciate
children’s schools or through our STEM and academ-
your service and look forward to the program’s future
ics programs to supporting a wide variety of assistance
success here in our community. ■
pure horsepower A SOUTHBAY CONTRIBUTOR AND EQUESTRIAN TRADES IN HER SADDLE FOR THE DRIVER’S SEAT AND GETS A RUSH OF ADRENALINE ON THE RACETRACK. Written by Diane E. Barber | Photographed by The Apex Agency
Todd Lewis with Lexus marketing and pro driver Scott Pruett
Diane in the driver’s seat
During what many car enthusiasts
road trip from L.A. for the adventure. For more than 60
call the glory days of Formula One
years, many great drivers from IndyCar, the International
motor racing, I worked alongside the sport’s British mastermind, Bernie Ecclestone, for numerous years while teams globetrotted across time zones and oceans vying for coveted
Motor Sports Association and other racing series have crossed the finish line under checkered flags victoriously, some of which I watched trackside when not working for Formula One. I looked forward to returning. After overnighting in Pacific Grove, Alex and I arrived at the track at 7:30 a.m. with our enthusiasm in high gear. We were assigned to the Carbon Team (one of four
championship points. The late
groups) and were whisked off to a hospitality suite for
legendary Brazilian race car driver
breakfast and a welcome presentation. Scott Pruett, a
Ayrton Senna and other notable competitors of that era piloted cars through the streets of Downtown Long Beach, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, on Notre Dame Island
native Californian, vintner and one of the winningest American professional race car drivers of this modern era, passionately shared insight from his racing career and set the stage for the day. “During the 50 years that I competed, I always considered myself a student of the sport,” he said. “Most people know how to drive, and it is common that they
in Montreal and at numerous other
want to stay in a comfort zone. To build confidence and
venues around the globe.
improve you have to take uncomfortable steps. My goal is to help the drivers feel like the car is an extension of
Curiosity about the rush they felt toyed with me when I was behind the scenes focused on event produc-
them and push them to the edge of that comfort zone.” The participants were escorted to the track by team
tion. Regrettably, I shrugged off invitations to attend
leaders with gusto as they set out to synchronize a
amateur racing schools to glean a mortal’s hint at what
well-oiled production that maximized everyone’s time
the illustrious pros experienced.
in the cars. Instruction by professional drivers along-
A few decades have passed since the roar of engines
side Pruett was done with Lexus performance vehicles
and the glamorous sport were the backdrop of my career,
(IS 350 F Sport, LC Coupe and RC F) that showcased
though nostalgia has often tapped me on the shoulder
distinctly different driving experiences: autocross,
for a look in the rearview mirror at some of the best
drifting and racetrack.
days of my life. I forged many relationships through the
According to Todd Lewis, the Lexus marketing strat-
sport that have sustained time, including with Penske
egist who was instrumental in starting the program
Automotive Group. That business connection led to a
in 2016, “The purpose of developing the school was to
recent invitation to participate in the Lexus Performance
position Lexus as not only a luxury brand but also a
Driving School. With a Cheshire cat-like grin, I seized
performance brand. We want people to experience our
the opportunity and enrolled my husband, Alex, and me
cars—not just talk about them. You don’t have to be a
in a full-day program as a surprise anniversary gift.
race car driver to experience speed in a safe environ-
The 2.2-mile race track at the iconic Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey was the destination for our weekend
ment. Participants leave changed as better drivers with more confidence and improved control.”
“WE WANT MOMENTS
to the racetrack. The goal was to reach the finish line
IN OUR LIVES THAT
hicle through the transitions by alternating the throttle
EXCITE US. THIS IS ONE OF THOSE!”
with the fastest time possible while balancing the veand braking. Next up on the action-filled program was the part that most inspired me to attend: driving on the racetrack and experiencing the internationally acclaimed corkscrew (a five-story drop from the entrance to the exit of the turn). We navigated the course in groups of
A brief classroom-style presentation that high-
coached us by radio to push the limits of the vehicles
buckled our seat belts in the driver’s seats of awaiting
(over 100 mph) with a keen awareness of weight distri-
cars. Autocross was first on our pedal-to-the-metal
bution on the tires.
agenda—an individually timed competition averaging 40 to 50 mph through a traffic-coned course adjacent
four in a lead-follow format while a pro driver in front
lighted driving theory preceded each session before we
Very hard braking shifted the weight of the car to the front tires as we entered the turns in preparation for
rapid acceleration out of the turns, which shifted the
hands trembled from excitement when I exited the car
weight to the rear. Looking through the upper half of
with the smell of burnt rubber in the air.
the windshield focused on what was ahead instead of in
Another timed autocross session followed drifting
front of us was also paramount. My equestrian instincts
with markedly improved times by everyone. We then
quickly kicked in as I realized that the fundamentals of
returned to the racetrack for our final lead-follow ses-
performance driving are remarkably the same as rid-
sion (also notably improved). The day culminated with
ing a horse: forward focus, timing, rear impulsion for
a passenger seat ride with pro drivers performing hot
speed, body balance and more.
laps around the race track for participants to experience
After lunch, Team Carbon’s vehicle control abilities were tested while drifting on a wet asphalt skid pad—
the full potential of the vehicles. According to Scott, who was at ground zero with the
full acceleration in a tight circle followed by hard brak-
start of the Lexus Performance Driving School, “I have
ing and counter steering, while maintaining awareness
lived on adrenaline my entire life and continue to by
of the vehicle’s location. Surprisingly, my experience
being a part of the school and testing and developing
navigating iced roads in the snowbelt as a teenager
new cars with Lexus. We want moments in our lives
kicked in, and it was exhilarating—so much so that my
that excite us. This is one of those!” ■
Delicious Decade MANHATTAN BEACH FAVORITE THE STRAND HOUSE CELEBRATES 10 YEARS SERVING THE SOUTH BAY. Written by Bonnie Graves
When I first met my husband, he was living with
York or Beverly Hills or San Francisco, but instead he’s
roommates—a lot of roommates—in a rundown house
cooking for Mike Zislis on the beach. The Strand House
in north Manhattan Beach. The roommates were mostly
remains as packed as ever, and the menu now gently re-
USC grad school classmates, with the occasional signif-
minds guests of a two-hour time limit per reservation.
icant other thrown in for good measure, and the décor
casual elegance that may mask just how attentive this
Sharkeez. As a restaurant professional from the other
chef and his team are to detail. A droll little box of
Manhattan, I was more than a little underwhelmed
Parker House rolls with softened, salted butter … a
by the beach version. After our second date, I keenly
menu carefully formatted with the birthday girl’s name
remember him dropping off my Styrofoam-encased
(mine) … tuna tartare geometrically plated with perfect
leftovers at his house before driving me home to West
precision and color. I felt like the premature ghost of
Hollywood. There nearly wasn’t a third date.
the undeceased Thomas Keller was roaming about,
It took me a while to realize that the third date, when
stray herb garnish sent out askew. The food is that
building that now houses The Strand House. I thought
precise and the plates are perfect, but the atmosphere
of that during a recent sunset dinner—exactly 19 years
is hardly rarefied nor hushed. (The dining room is quite
to the day (and two kids) later.
loud due to all those pretty, glinting surfaces.) It’s a winning combination, although part of me
10-year anniversary, Manhattan Beach is as changed
felt like some of the finer points of the food were lost
as I am. I don’t think anyone would have predicted the
on nearby tables that were obviously more about the
culinary scene that grew in the Beach Cities over the
cocktails—and a lot of them. Bar manager Makala
past decade. And with telecommuting firmly enshrined
Meyer has an exceptional list of spirits, and the mixed
by the pandemic, beach dwellers are content to stay
drinks are plentiful. Wine selections are solid, but there
close to home. While some of the classic dive bars and
are still a lot of corporate, name-brand wines available
taco joints are still here, many have been replaced by
for folks who prefer to drink what they already know.
fine-dining outlets helmed by chefs who appreciate the
A glass of Laurent-Perrier Champagne and some very
lifestyle that draws families, surfers and students alike
good pinot noir from my friend Greg La Follette fit the
to the South Bay.
bill for me.
Executive chef Craig Hopson is that kind of guy. His starry Michelin résumé might have kept him in New
quiet but terrifying as he scolds a line cook for a single
it did happen, involved dancing at a club in the same
As the restaurant celebrates both a new chef and its
The vibe is all glass windows and ocean views and
featured Trojan everything and dishware stolen from
Dinner highlights included a beautiful, summery burrata with rhubarb, purslane, mint and chiles—the
colors again carefully integrated with taste and texture. I was mightily tempted to break my “absolutely no pictures during dinner” rule just to capture this pretty plate. Ōra King salmon finished with miso vinaigrette and tempura zucchini blossoms was a lovely, light choice for August temps as well. Weightier but no less delicious was the absolutely perfect duck breast with confit leg, pickled ramps and hazelnut vinaigrette. That duck and the La Follette pinot were a match made in heaven. Chef Hopson’s savory skills are complemented by executive pastry chef Steven Puga’s desserts. His key lime tart with caramelized pineapple and mango coconut gelée was incredible, as was the white chocolate banana crémeux. Verve coffee and a great collection of nightcaps make that two-hour time limit a challenge to enforce. The Strand House is not just “still good.” It’s actually better than it’s ever been, so don’t be daunted by long wait times or the casual beach location. Take off your Havaianas and dress up a bit. The Strand House is executing extraordinarily great food, all with a welcoming front-of-the-house vibe that feels a lot like Manhattan Beach itself—laid-back and fun, if expensive. I can’t wait to see what Hopson creates as TSH moves into its second decade. ■
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down the line TWO SOUTH BAY PLAYERS TAKE THE COURT IN A QUEST TO BECOME THE NEXT TENNIS SUPERSTARS. Written & photographed by Kat Monk
Tennis greats Tracy Austin and Pete Sampras both grew up in Palos Verdes, giving the South Bay a special
of a peacemaker with her competitive siblings. Kenadi Hance, 24, played tennis for the University of Washington, and Connor Hance, 22, just graduated from the UCLA tennis team. Both Kenadi and Connor
connection to the international tennis
have decided to move on to different avenues in life
world. Now two new prospects—
after COVID-19 seriously impacted their opportunities.
Kimmi Hance, 18, from Torrance and Quin Brady, 16, from Hermosa
Keaton, the youngest at 13, might be the most competitive of all four children. “Right now, I can still beat Keaton,” says Kimmi. But Keaton is a force to be reckoned
Beach—hope to follow in those
with, and she is cognizant that her heyday in dominating
against her younger brother might be ending soon.
Quin, a junior at Da Vinci High School, recently quali-
“I got my one win, and I will never play him again,” shares Allen Yap, the Mira Costa girls tennis coach, who
fied for the finals of the 2021 Manhattan Beach Open for
does not like to lose. Having built-in tennis partners
singles and doubles. Kimmi, a college freshman, just
makes for golden opportunities because they already
started a new journey playing for the second-ranked team
know your strengths and weaknesses.
in the nation, the University of California, Los Angeles. It would not be a stretch to say the girls learned how to play tennis roughly around the time they learned
Kimmi quit tennis temporarily at 10 to pursue a passion for soccer. The individuality of tennis became unappealing, and she purposely sabotaged a match so
how to walk. It was a natural progression, as both were born to families with deep tennis roots. In fact, both families were good friends long before the girls were even born. Courtney, Kimmi’s mom, donned a suit and proudly served as a groomsman in the wedding of Kevin, Quin’s father. The girls might not know each other well now, but a look back at old photo albums shows their younger versions laughing and hugging. Each in different age brackets and at different phases of their careers, the young women’s paths don’t cross much. Not yet. The Hances own and operate South Bay Tennis Center in Torrance, where both parents are top-notch tennis pros. The Bradys operate Brady Tennis Camps, offering adult and junior weekend and weeklong tennis camps locally and around southern California. Although both girls became young tennis students of their families, their tennis careers are on slightly different trajectories. When Kimmi walks on the court, she exudes power and confidence. “My mom is super competitive, yet she never carries that attitude off the court,” she explains. “My goal is to be like her.” As the third of four children, she is a bit
Kiana, 20, who is currently playing tennis at the University of Redlands in Riverside. Her cousin Kai is currently playing at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Quin recently had her first days back at school due to the pandemic. “Team Quin” has a few coaches besides her father to help her have a well-rounded game. “She’s one of the rare players I coach that can take what I verbalize and put it into action on the court almost instantly and flawlessly,” says Allen Yap. Quin recently made it to the finals in both the Women’s singles and the Women’s Open doubles diviQuin Brady
sions of the 54th Annual Manhattan Beach Open tennis tournament held at Manhattan Country Club. It was the first time Quin played in front of a large crowd of
she wouldn’t be late for her soccer game. Not amused,
more than 100 people. She lost to Tricia Mar of Seal
her coach and father vowed he would not take her to
Beach (6-4, 4-6, 6-2). “It was definitely nerve-racking
any more tournaments. For the next three years, she
because of how many people were watching me, and
focused on soccer. But after a few concussions in sev-
I’ve never played in front of that many people before,”
enth grade, she stopped playing.
shares Quin. “But it made me feel really special because
The United States Tennis Association (USTA), which runs an elite camp for junior players in Carson, called South Bay Tennis Center after a young female player
She narrowly lost with sister Kiana as her open doubles partner in a marathon match to Palos Verdes
young female player who could even out their numbers
Estates’ Katelyn Hart and Kacey Feng (5-7, 6-4, 10-8).
by temporarily replacing the highly ranked player in
But taking home $1,000 at the Mason Zisette Memorial
their camp. With nothing to lose, Kimmi showed up,
Tournament and a second-place ranking created a
and much to everyone’s surprise, she outperformed
has embraced her ever since.
Quin is just on the verge of researching her college opportunities. The one thing she knows is that she
At 15, Kimmi played in the U.S. Open Junior tour-
wants to stay in California. Maybe one day these two
ney. And following in her older brother’s footsteps as a
will become teammates at UCLA and future competi-
blue-chip player, she received a full scholarship to play
tors at the U.S. Open—where they both hope to play
tennis at UCLA. “Kimmi is such a huge asset to our team
because she is showing incredible leadership qualities,”
“The support of the fans at the U.S. Open is one-of-
explains Stella Sampras, Pete’s sister. “She has an all-
a-kind—they are so supportive,” says Kimmi. Will we
court game, and we are looking forward to her being a
see these two South Bay prospects on opposite sides of
huge contribution to our team for the next four years.”
the court in New York one day? Maybe so, but it will
On the other side of the court, Quin brings a poise and height that grab your attention. She has one older sister,
of my friends came out also to support me.”
was injured and couldn’t play. They were looking for a
many of the other players. The USTA took notice and
the majority of the people were cheering for me. A lot
be difficult to take sides with two such extraordinary hometown players living their dream. ■
the ritual FOR 22 YEARS VETERAN DICK FREEMAN HAS SKIMMED THROUGH SOUTH BAY WATERS FIVE DAYS A WEEK—SANS WETSUIT. HERE’S WHY. Written by Jared Sayers | Photographed by Jeff Berting
It’s 6 a.m. on a cold South Bay
meet the day at the water’s edge. He makes his way to
morning in February. The sun has yet
the closed lifeguard tower and places his sandals on
to grace its warmth over the coastal rooflines facing seaward. I look
As he approaches the water’s edge, he suddenly
at the thermostat from inside my well-heated car. It reads 47º outside
pause. Maybe a prayer, maybe a memory. The cold
surface is calm with a light Santa Ana breeze coming off the desert, giving the ocean surface that sharp, crisp,
breeze blows across his back, and by now the earlymorning dog walkers overdressed in their Eskimo jackets have stopped to watch. Then he begins to move into the shallows. When he gets about waist deep, he pulls his legs out from underneath his body and fully submerges himself in the frigid
textured appearance. Not a soul in
waters. As he resurfaces, I could hear from inside my
sight. Something inside me exhales.
incubator a shriek. Not of shock, alarm or distress. No.
Ah yes … this is why I live here.
This was a shriek that uses the same vocal cords as a
I tightly grip my coffee as I look out over the ocean—
child opening a present at Christmas. It was the sound of joy. Exuberance. A sound that didn’t care who heard
trying to get enough caffeine down the gullet to ward
nor who was watching because it comes from a place of
off the icy breeze that will undoubtedly cut through the
overflow. That’s what I heard.
artificial warmth I’ve created inside my car as soon as I
And then he started splashing. I watched in dismay.
open the door. Just as I’m about to pull the door handle
It looked light. Playful. It was carefree, like watching
to exit the car, the second-guessing begins. Well, the
the bear at the zoo play in his pool on a hot summer
surf isn’t that good out there. Or, the tide is dropping,
day. And yet the backdrop for this behavior was some-
it’ll be junk within an hour. Not worth it. Every surfer
thing quite ominous. Cold. Uninviting. Wild.
knows the voices that try to keep you in your car. Just then a man walks right in front of my hood.
Finally, he launched a couple fistfuls of ocean water up into the morning sky and before they could drop,
Through the windshield he looks to be a 70-some-
he began to head out to sea with the same pace as his
thing-year-old, bare-chested man wearing nothing
stroll down to the water. Slow, graceful, metronome-
except a pair of elastic-waist swim trunks and a pair of
like repetition. Arm over arm, swimming off into the
flip-flops. I look back up at the thermostat. Yep, still
salty, cold distance.
47º. And that water is no more than 54º. Here I am, huddled in my car—which is now more of
This is Dick Freeman. I have had the great privilege of watching Dick’s morning routine for more than 20
an incubator than a means of transportation—clutching
years now. Rain, shine, wind, waves, it does not mat-
a hot coffee, staring at the thermostat, using my best
ter. Dick has had the same daily ritual of getting in the
Jedi mind tricks to see if I can move the outside temp
ocean and swimming the same 1-mile course five days
up a couple degrees. Yet I watch this older gentleman
a week since 1999.
in nothing but a pair of shorts saunter his way down to the beach. His walk is not hurried, nor is there a determined,
swim fins and in the other a pair of goggles. That’s it. stops. He stares out over the horizon. A moment. A
and a toasty 80º inside. The ocean
the rear deck. Then with one hand he clutches a pair of
But why no wetsuit? Is he a part of some cuttingedge trend in modern-day health and wellness? Guess again. The only reason he doesn’t use a wetsuit is
must-persevere posture about him. None of that. Just
simply that he couldn’t afford one when he first started
a nice, easy stroll before the sun hits the coast to go
swimming. So why use one now?
“I CAN’T EXPLAIN IT MUCH MORE THAN IT IS JUST SOMETHING I ENJOY AND HAVE A PASSION FOR. I LOVE GETTING IN THE WATER. ANY REASON WHY SOMEONE WOULDN’T WANT TO DO THIS SIMPLY DOES NOT COMPUTE WITH ME.” 80
Dick was born in Hawthorne, grew up in Lawndale, and was on the water and swim teams at Leuzinger High School in 1954. Too wiry for football, self-
It begins to root itself to something very deep—something so primal it becomes difficult to put a finger on. When I was interviewing Dick for this story, I kept
proclaimed lousy at tennis and even worse at golf,
wanting to understand the root of “why.” Why do you
swimming seemed to be the best natural fit. After high
get in the ocean and swim five days a week? Why do
school he became an ocean lifeguard for about 10 years
you not care if it’s cold? Why do you swim the same
before getting drafted in 1966 and heading to Vietnam.
1-mile course every time? Why, why, why? We want to
In Vietnam Dick was a part of the 49th Infantry Platoon Scout Dog. Each soldier paired with a dog
rationalize what we do not understand. I was anticipating an answer that dug into the hor-
whose job was to sniff out mines, booby traps and am-
rors of Vietnam. I was anticipating some “aha” wisdom
bushes. A task not for the faint of heart, yet his platoon
to be imparted on me like a shining light from above.
was the best. The most effective. And also suffered the
I was anticipating dramatics. I tried so many different
highest number of casualties.
angles to best understand the “why”—to the point that
One rainy night, alone in the rice patties, Dick looked up to the heavens asking to go home. He’d seen enough. Been through enough and was now pleading
Dick was finally forced to answer what was now a very poignant question. WHY? With nowhere to go, he just looked at me with such
for mercy. Spare him. Take him out of where he has
kindness, with patience in his eyes as my younger, white-
found himself. The next few days the sun came out,
knuckled effort tried to rationalize what I could not under-
the dust settled, angst lowered … until an explosion. A
stand. He was so gracious. He looked me right in the eye,
piece of shrapnel went flying through the air straight
smiled, then said, “Jared, I can’t explain it much more than
through Dick’s foot. That was it. He spent two months
it is just something I enjoy and have a passion for. I love
in the hospital and was discharged from the infantry
getting in the water. Any reason why someone wouldn’t
and later came home on March 15, 1968.
want to do this simply does not compute with me.”
Post-Vietnam, Dick pursued a career in insurance. Building a career for himself was his central focus.
Mic drop. Some of the biggest, most awe-inspiring things this
He succeeded. Then one evening, climbing a flight of
world has to offer do not give us the luxury of under-
stairs, he found himself winded by the time he reached
standing them in their entirety. Explain love. Explain
the top. That did not sit well with the former lifeguard
forgiveness. Explain dancing. Explain eating nachos
and Vietnam vet.
at Dodger Stadium on a warm Chavez Ravine evening.
So he reverted to his childhood activity: swimming. That was in 1999. From that day forward, Dick has
Save yourself the effort in doing so, because you’ll just sound ridiculous when you do.
spent every week in the ocean swimming. Five days a
Instead create a category of awe and wonder and
week (5,720 days and counting), at the same time and
implode any linear, logical definition. In Dick’s case,
the same course each day.
the simple act of returning to the water’s edge day in
In 1999 swimming came back into his life. He took
and day out is where the connection takes place that
it back up for the same reason we all get off the couch,
dictates how everything else will go—and not the other
lose weight, build fitness, wear those jeans again.
But something happened. When you spend five days a week in the ocean rain or
And in a world that places so much value on a feverish attempt to make sense of every single thing, it’s
shine, something begins to shift. The goal is no longer
nice to have people like Dick who can show us where
to fit into those jeans. That obviously happens, but
some of the treasure is buried. Because sometimes it is
something else begins to happen. A new driving force.
in places like 54º water at dawn without explanation. ■
Missions Accomplished ENJOY A HISTORY LESSON AT TWO SIGNIFICANT STOPS ON THE ORIGINAL EL CAMINO REAL. Written by Darren Elms
If you grew up in California, there’s a good chance you
charm, walkability, dining and accommodations. Best
built a mission model in fourth grade. I’m dismayed that
of all, both are accessible via Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner
today’s younger set can buy precut, easy-to-assemble
train, with departures from Union Station. The towns
model kits online. Where’s the sweat? The tears? The
are super easy to navigate on foot, so why not leave the
macaroni tile roof? Man, they’re missing out.
four wheels at home?
Needless to say, my foray into reconstructing the San Gabriel Mission, bell tower and all, created a lifelong
San Juan Capistrano
love for California history. And while Junípero Serra and
Probably one of the best-known missions, thanks to
his legacy up and down our golden coast stir up many
the song by composer Leon René, Missíon San Juan
controversial talking points, I think it’s important to
Capistrano proved as enchanting as its migrating swal-
explore our state’s heritage—the good, the bad and the
lows. Founded by Saint Junípero Serra in 1776, the
dusty. It’s far from perfect, but it’s ours.
mission was the seventh of 21 established along the
Well into my 40s, I had yet to visit two well-known
El Camino Real by the Spanish. While these newcom-
mission towns in California: San Juan Capistrano and
ers brought new technology, clothes, food and animals
San Luis Obispo. Both exceeded my expectations for
to the region, they also brought disease and forever
changed the natural and agricultural landscape. Many
at the Tracks, a bustling eatery housed in a former
indigenous Acjachemen were converted to Catholicism,
train station. You can watch the trains pass through
and thousands perished without immunity to European
while munching on their locally acquired, globally
diseases. Much of the compound they helped build
inspired cuisine. Get a taste of authentic Mexican fare
remains intact, full of artifacts and history from nearly
at El Adobe de Capistrano, set in a beautiful state his-
250 years. You can also tour the ruins of the Great
toric landmark. If you’re feeling like a taste of home,
Stone Church (leveled by an earthquake in 1812), the
Hennessey’s Tavern can be found just across the street
surrounding gardens and a chapel where Saint Serra
from the mission.
celebrated mass. San Luis Obispo Where to Stay:
Head in the opposite direction on the Surfliner, and
Just across the street from the mission, The Inn at the
you’ll eventually hit San Luis Obispo. Home to Cal
Mission debuted last year as part of the Autograph
Poly, the tree-lined streets are abuzz with a youthful
Collection. Blending California and Spanish architec-
energy year-round. Founded a few years earlier than
ture, the property feels right at home in the coastal
Capistrano in 1772, Mission San Luis Obispo De Tolsola
town and offers a full restaurant, spa, daytime café and
also sits at the center of town. Though not as sprawling
more. Book ahead and request a room overlooking the
as its southerly sister, the mission features a combina-
mission ruins. innatthemissionsjc.com
tion of belfry and vestibule not found in other California missions. The grounds were used by John C. Frémont
Where to Eat:
and his “California Battalion” as a base during the war
After you’ve indulged on tapas and cocktails at on-site
with Mexico in 1846. Since then, the church has under-
Ysidora Restaurant, venture out in town for some more
gone major renovations and restructuring, with a new
dining destinations. One of the most popular is Trevor’s
plaza established in front in 1970.
This page: San Juan Capistrano
This page: San Luis Obispo
Where to Stay The recently opened Hotel San Luis Obispo puts you front and center in the action of downtown. Modern and spacious with a splash of color, the comfy rooms open to balconies with lovely city and hillside views. Guests can enjoy a treatment at the Sol Spa or dine and drink at one of four venues, including a rooftop bar with a killer happy hour and bocce ball. hotel-slo.com Where to Eat Hotel SLO hosts one of the best restaurants in town, Ox + Anchor. As the name implies, the menu goes all in on surf and turf, with some gorgeous wine pairings and a view of the kitchen from the dining room. For a casual lunch, mosey up to the takeout window at Old SLO BBQ Co. for a Santa Maria-style tri-tip sandwich to go. Creekside in the heart of town, you can sip on craft libations at Sidecar Cocktail Co., like the carrot- and gin-forward Golden Hour or cilantro-infused mezcal in Oh Damn Trina! You can even take some creations to go, with 16-ounce bottles to serve four or five friends. ■
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twice the impact TWO LOCAL DESIGNERS BRING ADAPTIVE APPAREL TO THE ACTIVE SOUTH BAY WOMAN. Written & photographed by Kat Monk
Convertible clothing is a relatively
Downtown Manhattan Beach, offered to host a launch
new term in the fashion design
party to showcase her designs. Much to her surprise, all
buyer at the Four Seasons hotel in Hawaii raving about
several different ways, giving a very
her luxurious leisure wear clothing she spotted on a
Jules Feng and Jennifer Abernathy don’t know each
guest. She asked for her line sheet—an order form with imagery of the different options that can be sold to retailers. Jules explained to the buyer that she was a
other personally, but their career paths have had a
one-woman show not yet set up for mass production.
similar trajectory in their embrace of convertibles.
Somehow, someway, Jules made it happened and soon
Neither Jules nor Jennifer grew up thinking they would become clothing designers, and neither set a path forward that would lead them in that direction. In
started fulfilling orders. She is now in multiple highend hotels in Hawaii. Jules is a great listener while being empathetic
a way, it just happened. They both adopted entrepre-
and intuitive. She approaches fashion with a custom
neurship and recognized a need in the fashion industry,
perspective—meaning as she gets to know her clients,
making the conscious decision to fill this void with
she specifically recommends the best designs that fit
their own fashion lines.
that person’s lifestyle. “I think the more we understand
Growing up in Chicago, Jules and her mom went shop-
each other, the more we understand ourselves and the
ping at the local mall in Schaumburg almost every week-
more we understand ourselves, the more we understand
end. Jules says her mom has always been very fashion-
one another,” explains Jules.
forward, and fashion was an interest the two shared. Originally a teacher and then a homemaker, Jules was
To this day she does not have a line sheet and uses social media as well as her website to showcase her
tired of wearing her workout clothing every day while
designs. In fact, she has recently introduced a second
70% of her amazing wardrobe sat idle in her closet.
line of clothing called Jules | Culture, clothing made in
Inspired by Marie Kondo, a Japanese organizing con-
South Korea, to add to her Jules | Made, clothing made
sultant, she decided to “tidy up” her closet. According
in Los Angeles.
to Marie, you look at each piece of clothing, and if it makes you smile—you keep it.
Looking at fashion from a different perspective, Jennifer Abernathy’s market is based on “zip-offs”—a
Jules put all her clothing into three piles. Beyond
type of convertible clothing that proves more versatile
the pile of clothes to keep, she made a pile to give to
for workouts or to help adapt to the temperature as the
Goodwill and another pile to use for modifications,
where she could make a few alterations and ultimately change the look of the original piece. The modification process was exhilarating. Suddenly
Originally from Arizona, Jennifer was a professional indoor volleyball player growing up. Athletes live a structured lifestyle. As she aged out of the sport, she
she was inspired to create a singular collection of her
became a bit conflicted with what her next step would
own designs for any size woman. Comfort and convert-
be, so she took a sales job.
ibility became the mission. During college in Seoul, South
Within a week or so, Jules received a call from the
you can typically wear pieces different appearance.
her pieces sold in that one evening.
Jennifer’s mom loved to sew and passed this skill on
Korea, Jules experienced a culture focused on a sophisti-
to her children. She was known for sewing her kids’
cated approach to textiles and thread counts—something
clothes including amazing, one-of-a-kind Halloween
she incorporated into her brand. BLVD, a boutique in
costumes. Realizing she had a creative passion that was
TOP RIGHT, PHOTOGRAPHED BY JUSTIN RUHL
world. The concept implies that
“WAKING UP IN THE MORNING AND WORKING HARD FOR YOURSELF AND A LIFE THAT YOU DREAM OF IS THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD.” not being realized, Jennifer opened a clothing boutique. It was during this phase of her life that she started doing hot yoga at Soho Yoga in Hermosa Beach. She was struck by how hard it was to change out of her sweaty yoga clothes. She started a quest to find yoga attire that matched her active lifestyle—to no avail. So she went home, cut up some of her exercise clothes and put zippers in them herself. Fellow yogis were awestruck with the ease with which she was able to zip off her clothing. Everyone wanted to know where they could purchase these zipoffs. Soon she discovered a niche for convertible exercise wear that could adapt to different lifestyles. Axcess Athletics was born. Whereas Jules funded her collection herself, Jennifer used a grassroots path—launching an online Kickstarter platform and personally driving to different yoga studios selling her products and dropping off fliers. Russian ice skaters and mud run (obstacle course) athletes have become a target demographic for her zip-offs. Ice skaters love her clothing because they can change their clothes without taking off their skates. Since her inception she now has moved over to additional forms of yoga clothing. As innovative designers and entrepreneurs, both Jennifer and Jules are one-woman businesses in charge of every portion of their work including shipping and marketing. “The most rewarding part is just knowing that I’m doing what I’m passionate about. Nothing beats that,” explains Jennifer. “Waking up in the morning and working hard for yourself and a life that you dream of is the greatest thing in the world. Every dollar you make counts so much more.” ■
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EMPLOYEE RETENTION CREDIT (ERC) If you qualify, business owners are eligible for up to $33,000 per employee. YOUR FINANCIAL LIFEGUARDS
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Fight for Life TWO DECADES AFTER LOSING HER FATHER, AN EL SEGUNDO RESIDENT MAKES STRIDES IN PANCREATIC CANCER AWARENESS. Written by Quinn Roberts | Photographed by Ari Michelson
It’s been 22 years since Julie Fleshman’s father passed
Month, PanCAN partnered with actress and writer Mindy
she knew very little about the disease. Fast-forward to
Kaling on a national awareness campaign. It was personal
2021, and she’s been able to harness her initial feelings
for Mindy, who lost her mother to the disease in 2012. The
and change the lives of so many as the president and CEO
campaign resulted in record-breaking fundraising num-
of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PanCAN).
bers despite the pandemic.
When Julie attempted to learn more about pancreatic
When you do that and have strong programs and services,
become a volunteer. At that time PanCAN was strictly
you can go and sell that to donors and supporters,” says
volunteer-based. However, Julie changed that. She was
Julie. “We are lucky to have a disease where people are
hired as the first full-time employee and then as the
passionate and want to help in whatever way possible.”
“My dad was such an important person in my life. I
Julie continues to keep PanCAN front and center in the fight against pancreatic cancer. She goes to Washington,
wanted to make him proud,” says Julie. “I wish he was
D.C. to speak to members of Congress on an annual
still alive, but I can’t imagine my life without PanCAN. In
basis and has advocated successfully to increase federal
some weird way he gave me a gift. I know he’d be very
research dollars. In December Congress passed a budget
proud. I hopefully can carry on his legacy.”
that included $15 million for the Department of Defense’s
One of the things that keeps Julie dedicated to the cause is the memory of what it was like when her father was diagnosed and the shortage of resources available to her
Pancreatic Cancer Research Program. When the program was created in 2019, $6 million had been allotted. “Members of Congress have so many issues. You go in
family. Because of that, she and a staff of 150 people are
as an expert ready to educate. It’s when we tell them sto-
doing everything they can to make resources available to
ries about people like my father or others lucky enough to
families. The nonprofit’s website gives information about
have survived that it resonates with them. They know our
pancreatic cancer, treatment information and what it’s
group now because we are relentless,” says Julie.
like to live with the disease. The most important program the organization created
“From day one we’ve had a plan. Every year we do.
cancer, she came across the organization and wanted to
executive director in April 2020.
In November, which is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness
away from pancreatic cancer at the age of 52. Back then,
Moving forward, PanCAN has a handful of ambitious goals. By 2030 PanCAN wants the five-year survival rate of pancre-
is patient services, which answers questions, offers caring
atic cancer to increase from 10% to 20%. The organization
support and helps guide those in need on the next steps to
also wants to raise $80 million annually. The last major goal
take. PanCAN speaks to more pancreatic cancer patients
is to raise awareness about PanCAN from 14% to 30%.
and caregivers than any other organization in the world.
“When we hear amazing stories about those who are
All of these resources have become possible due to the
fighting or who have fought pancreatic cancer, it reener-
overwhelming increase in the amount of money donated to
gizes us and inspires me and the staff to remember why
PanCAN. Under Julie’s leadership, PanCAN went from having
we do this and why it is so important to reach our goals,”
revenue of $228,000 to a budget of more than $40 million.
says Julie. ■
as seen in
In every issue, we share one story across our network that explores topics beyond the limits of the South Bay. These California stories speak to the meaningful impact our state and its residents are making on the global stage. To learn more about Golden State and discover more stories like this, visit goldenstate.is.
the rainbow connection BASED IN SAN FRANCISCO, A LIFELONG SKATER TRANSFORMS RECYCLED SKATEBOARDS INTO FUNCTIONAL (AND RIDEABLE) WORKS OF ART. Written by Shaun Tolson | Photographed by Brendon Klein and George Rocha
Twelve years ago, George Rocha
heart that would serve as a gift for his then-girlfriend.
was struck with a lightning bolt
George has since made about a dozen heart sculp-
of inspiration. That revelation
sions—in part because he’s drawn more to creating
sculptural artwork made by Haroshi,
functional artwork and also because he doesn’t want to
who used recycled skateboard decks
venture too close to Haroshi’s work that initially drew him into the craft. “I’m not a fan of jumping on somebody else’s con-
as the medium for his signature
cept. I respect people’s lanes like that,” he says. “I also
wood carvings. George, who learned
don’t want to create a show and call myself a sculptor.
to skateboard when he was 5 years old while living in Rhode Island and has skated pretty much every day since (he’s now 46), immediately began to think of functional pieces of artwork that he could create in a similar fashion. George was raised with a handyman’s mentality, and
When I make sculpture pieces, I give them to a person. They’re very deliberate and private.” In almost the same instant that Iris Skateboards was born, George also took on a few custom furniture commissions—including a countertop for Aqua Surf Shop just a few blocks from San Francisco’s Ocean Beach. He also crafted four dining tables for HopSaint Brewing Company in Torrance. “It was a baptism by fire,” George recalls of the commission to build those dining tables, but he wasn’t worried. “Growing up in a Portuguese household, we
he acknowledges that he was always at his best creat-
were taught to do everything,” he explains, “so I had
ing functional objects—things that served a purpose.
a concept and a level of comfort of working with many
“Everything is about skateboarding to me,” he says.
Not surprisingly, George’s brainstorming session
George also had an innate interest in furniture
led to the idea that he should fashion a skateboard
design, which manifested itself years earlier when he
made from the broken-down decks of retired boards.
crafted a futuristic, unibody rocking chair from dozens
Consider it the skateboard circle of life. At that mo-
of sheets of plywood. With the success of that rocking
ment, Iris Skateboards was born, though it would
chair project in his mind, George confidently accepted
be another two years before George formalized the
the commission—knowing that he could figure out
San Francisco business. It required almost that same
how to best adapt his skateboard-building process to
amount of time for George to come up with the busi-
produce restaurant-quality dining tables.
ness’s name (more on this later). Though he originally considered building a complete
The first skateboards that George built for himself a dozen years ago were flat cruiser boards with a
skateboard—one that included trucks and wheels—
signature rainbow colorway and a distinctively retro
George soon found that he was having so much fun
aesthetic that evoked 1970s style. Every day that George
making the board itself that he decided to focus solely
would ride them around his neighborhood, someone
on that. “I’m more of an industrial designer at heart,”
new would stop to ask him about the board and where
he says, “so I just ran with the skateboard concept.”
he acquired it.
At the same time, however, George also made a few sculptural pieces, including a three-dimensional
auctions. But he rarely dabbles in sculptural commis-
took form the moment he saw the a Japanese artist and skateboarder
tures, including a handful that were carved for charity
“The public response was the whole reason I even went into business,” he says. “You have to have the
“THERE ARE A LOT OF SKATEBOARDERS IN SAN FRANCISCO, AND THEY GO THROUGH A
confidence to know it’s something viable and worthy of your time to legitimize it.” By determining that the business had legitimate potential and staying power, George had cleared the first of many hurdles. But he still needed a compelling and effective name for his company and brand. Even after months of soliciting suggestions from his skateboarding friends, George had no good ideas. At the
LOT OF DECKS. STILL,
11th hour, as pressure to finalize the moniker of his en-
THERE’S ALWAYS A NEED
Nike’s brand name was a reference to the Greek god
TO RECYCLE THEM,
distinctive rainbow aesthetic, George researched Greek
SO IT’S MY DUTY
the rainbow and the messenger of the gods.
TO GO GET THEM.”
that the Portuguese word for rainbow was arco iris.
terprise reached its zenith, George recalled learning that of victory. Recognizing that his recycled boards had a mythology and discovered that Iris was the goddess of Based on his Portuguese heritage, George also knew With those two discoveries, the answer was suddenly
clear and Iris Skateboards was incorporated in 2012.
duty to go get them.”
Two years later, George was offered a golden op-
In terms of volume, Iris’ new skateboard decks,
portunity. The Canadian documentary television series
which all cost $150, represent the company’s greatest
How It’s Made wanted to feature his boards. Even
commodity. Now that George is pressing limited-
though the show would reveal some of the steps in
edition, concave boards—releasing new shapes every
his process—broadcasting it to U.S. audiences via the
six months or so—those decks are the most sought-
Science Channel—George accepted almost immediate-
after pieces and they’ll sell out in a matter of days,
ly. The prospect of the rest of the world learning the
sometimes in less than 10 minutes.
basics to do what he does did not deter the then-39year-old entrepreneur. “I’m not that benevolent where I was thinking, ‘I
From a revenue standpoint, however, George’s custom furniture leads the way. Stools typically cost $200 per piece; a coffee table starts at about $1,500; and
want to teach the world this,’” he says. “But I realized
other larger pieces carry price tags that eclipse several
that if I wanted the world to see my craft, I had to bare
myself. If to show my work meant that I had to show a
“A lot of my furniture projects feel like collabora-
bit of the how, then I was willing to accept that. There’s
tions,” he says. “I talk to the client and want to know
no secret ingredient to what I do.”
what they’re about, what function the piece is going to
In the immediate aftermath of the episode airing in
serve, where it’s going to be in the house, and then the
early December 2014, George fielded orders for about
layout of the room and dimensions. I play with not just
50 boards a month—demand that remained constant
the colors but the shapes. It keeps it from feeling stale
through the end of the following summer. Ever since,
and keeps me from feeling like I’m a manufacturer.”
George receives messages almost every month from
George has even dabbled in surfboards, creating a
skateboard artists or recycled skateboard builders who
dozen or so several years ago with the help of a friend.
reveal that they got into the craft by first watching that
Even though George acknowledges that there’s not as
episode of How It’s Made.
much crossover between skateboarding and surfing as
As for how George makes his boards, not much has
many people might think, he’s open to making surf-
changed in the almost 10 years that Iris has served
boards a more regular facet of his business. “I’m still
as George’s primary occupation. Just as it was in the
meaning to find a local shaper to work with,” he says,
beginning, Iris Skateboards remains a one-man opera-
“to keep it [Iris surfboards] alive on a small scale.”
tion—though over time the entirety of his garage has consumed the necessary machinery involved. In that respect, George has excelled at playing a real-
Because George is so busy, he seldom has time to dream up what he might like to create next. Similarly, he won’t take on just any special request. “You have to
life version of the game Tetris—finding ways to squeeze
pique my interest. You have to wow me,” he declares.
in new, industrial-strength power tools to maximize the
“I don’t want to make stuff out of skateboards just for
area of his workspace. “My superpower is learning how
the sake of doing it. If it’s not aesthetically pleasing
to make things more efficient,” he says. “My shop is
and serves a function, then I won’t do it.”
only 700 square feet, but it packs a punch.” Over the course of a year, George brings in between
And even though George is as busy as he is, seemingly always engaged in some activity or task related to
1,500 and 2,000 broken-down boards, which he collects
his job, he’s one of the lucky few who never feels like
from local skate shops that would otherwise throw
he’s working. “I don’t consider it workaholic syndrome
them away. “There are a lot of skateboarders in San
when I have so much fun doing it,” he says. “Deep
Francisco, and they go through a lot of decks,” he says.
down inside I’m a skate rat who still loves everything to
“Still, there’s always a need to recycle them, so it’s my
do with skateboarding. I’m a skateboarder at heart.” ■
63rd Annual Portuguese Bend National Horse Show Peninsula Committee Children’s Hospital presented the 63rd annual Portuguese Bend National Horse Show on September 10–12, with proceeds benefiting Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. This
Al Walsh, Kelly Walsh, Paul Giuliano, Noelle Giuliano, Jan Van Riper, Doug Van Riper
highly regarded, A-rated horse show challenged some of the West Coast’s finest riders with difficult and exciting courses, including the prestigious PCHA
Betty Davidson and grandson John Gentry
Anne Clark, Larry Clark, Carey Romer
Front: Lana O’Shea, Kira O’Shea (CHLA Featured Child), Sophie O’Shea, Dr. Lauren Nguyen. Back: Michael O’Shea
Flora Fairchild, Kathy Johnson, Hilary Waxler
Kak McKinnie, Peggy Lanigan, Marilyn Hove, Leslie Hively, Val Kelly
PHOTOGRAPHED BY MAUREEN HAZARD & MIKE SHIELDS
Horsemanship Medal Finals.
EpiPalooza The Radio Rebels headlined EpiPalooza 2021 along with Pennyroyal, The DropOffs, Salem Meade, Redacted and Cooper Jones. The event was hosted by Mira Costa End Epilepsy at South Bay Customs in El Segundo. The proceeds will benefit the Epilepsy Foundation Los Angeles
PHOTOGRAPHED BY KAT MONK
and a new college scholarship at Mira Costa.
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“We have a high level of expertise in our firm and the highest form of integrity. Our team environment and the collaborative process we use make the firm more efficient and keep projects moving in a timely manner for our clients.” – DENISE M. GUZMAN, FOUNDER GUZMAN LAW GROUP
TRUSTED ADVISORS The key to financial success—for individuals and businesses alike—is a professional team of trusted advisors. These experts inform us about our options and help us discover solutions for life’s challenges. When making decisions that impact business, home and family, we can depend on the guidance of these South Bay specialists, known for innovative solutions and top-notch client care.
GUZMAN LAW GROUP DENISE M. GUZMAN
EDWARD JONES AUDREY A. STANSBURY
ROSEN SABA JIM ROSEN & RYAN SABA
RUNNING POINT CAPITAL ADVISORS JIM SCHLAGER
CHASE LAW GROUP DEANN FLORES CHASE & SCOTT LINER
LAW OFFICES OF WILLIAM P. GLAVIN BILL GLAVIN
SIGNATURE ESTATE & INVESTMENT ADVISORS VINCE A. DILEVA
BAKER, BURTON & LUNDY
STUMPO WEALTH MANAGEMENT GROUP UBS FINANCIAL SERVICES GINO R. STUMPO
ADISHIAN LAW GROUP | ADISHIAN CAPITAL CHRIS ADISHIAN
NORTHWESTERN MUTUAL PAUL BABOOLAL
STRATEGIC VIEW ADVISORS EDWARD MOYZES
MIONI FAMILY LAW LOVETTE MIONI & CHRISTOPHER CHOI
124 COMPASS LYNN NAKASATO-AGLIPAY 125
NAVIGOE TRUSTEE SERVICES SCOTT LEONARD
LAW OFFICES OF SANFORD JOSSEN SANFORD JOSSEN
WRITTEN BY LAURA L. WATTS | PHOTOGRAPHED BY SHANE O’DONNELL
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GUZMAN LAW GROUP, PC Denise M. Guzman, Founder/Principal Attorney
WHY DO YOUR CLIENTS CONSIDER YOU THEIR TRUSTED ADVISOR? Denise M. Guzman, Business and Estate Planning Attorney: “Part of why my clients consider me their trusted advisor is due to my years of experience. I also go above and beyond the business at hand. I establish a personal relationship with my clients. I extend myself and listen to what they are going through in their lives. Whether it’s a business client going through a difficult time or a successor trustee dealing with the death of a parent, I take a personal interest in what they are going through. I care about my clients’ personal well-being.” WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT YOUR TEAM? Drew Hallett, Business and Litigation Attorney: “Our culture. When clients retain the Guzman Law Group, they are not just retaining one attorney at our firm. They are getting the whole team. We promote a collaborative environment that emphasizes and encourages teamwork, communication and transparency. Our team mentality is a large part of why the transition to a virtual office has been so smooth.”
WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? Carol T. Contes, Entertainment, Copyright & Trademark Attorney: “As a transactional lawyer, my clients want to make deals and see their projects produced (and distributed to the public). My job is to help them solidify deals, work on issues, comply with applicable laws, regulations and industry practices, and be proactive on their behalf.” WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? Marcus Chang, Business and Estate Planning Attorney: “I believe a ‘trusted advisor’ is somebody who takes the time to know their clients. When I have an understanding of who my client is and their goals, I am able to better serve them.” TELL US ABOUT YOUR WORKING STYLE. Denise M. Guzman: “As an attorney my working style is direct, intuitive and—by nature—collaborative. However, I also know how to deliver the bottom line to opposing counsel. I am very good at effectively communicating a difficult message. Timing is everything in a case, and I know how to choose the right moment to engage in battle—and only if needed.” WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? Edward Powell, Business Attorney: “Unlike some fields such as litigation, financial services law can be a win-win for both our clients and their counterparties. This requires a calm, measured approach to issues that arise during negotiation and documentation, and creative problemsolving to develop answers that appeal to all the parties on a deal.”
HOW DO YOU ADVISE YOUR CLIENTS TO ACHIEVE AND MAINTAIN SUCCESS? Denise M. Guzman: “Be proactive. Whether it’s business or estate planning, it’s about creating a strong foundation that the next generation can work from. It helps everyone involved have a clear picture of where they are going.” WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? Marcus Chang: “One of the most fulfilling parts of my career is providing my clients with peace of mind—either by resolving a problem they had in administering a loved one’s estate or trust, or by creating an estate plan that outlines their wishes for their lifetime and the lifetimes of their beneficiaries.” Denise M. Guzman: “Growing the firm is very fulfilling, as well as mentoring the next generation of rising stars on what it takes to sustain excellence as an attorney.” Carol T. Contes: “I enjoy being of service to clients who are trying to bring their projects to fruition.” IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? Edward Powell: “The private mergers and acquisitions market has continued to expand even during the pandemic—primarily through strategic acquisitions but also with familyowned businesses seeking to implement their succession planning with a sale of their company to either outsiders or a transfer to a new generation. Increasingly, these transactions with third parties are much more sophisticated than ever, often involving private equity fund acquisitions with sponsors who may demand highly complex deal structures. We guide our clients throughout this process to ensure they understand each step, that they have the opportunity to make the most informed decisions as part of the selling or buying process, and that there are no post-closing surprises.”
1230 ROSECRANS AVENUE, SUITE 650, MANHATTAN BEACH | 310-321-6640 | GUZMANLG.COM
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
PHOTOGRAPHED BY MARISA GUZMÁN-ALOIA
Manhattan Beach-based legal firm, Guzman Law Group represents clients throughout the U.S. in business law and estate planning matters. A snapshot of the firm client base reveals a variety of industries: manufacturers, distributors, content creators, production companies, internet pioneers and more. Founder Denise M. Guzman is a noted business, estate planning and trust attorney who has served the South Bay for more than 30 years. She earned her bachelor’s degree from USC and her law degree from UCLA and is a frequent guest lecturer on business, estate planning and trust administration issues. She functions as virtual in-house corporate counsel for many clients. Guzman Law Group is certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council.
L to R: Attorneys Christopher C. Schwarz, Carol T. Contes, Drew C. Hallett, Edward Powell, Denise M. Guzman, Charles Shelton, Marcus Chang, Jane S. Lee
ROSEN SABA, LLP Jim Rosen & Ryan Saba, Founders & Partners
osen Saba is a boutique, full-service civil litigation law firm representing individuals and businesses in a wide range of business, employment and catastrophic injury litigation. The firm was originally founded in 1993, and name partners Jim Rosen and Ryan Saba have been practicing together since 1999. Jim completed his undergraduate studies at UCLA and earned his law degree at Loyola Law School. He has practiced law since 1985. Ryan Saba obtained his undergraduate degree from UC San Diego and then graduated from the University of San Diego Law School. He has practiced law since 1997.
WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “Ultimately, it comes down to client satisfaction, a reputation for success and integrity, the enjoyment of a vibrant practice, and the trust and collegiality of one’s peers.” WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “It takes hard work. Professionals earn the label ‘trusted advisor’ by focusing on the client’s needs, working hard to help them achieve their goals and at all times elevating the client’s interests above their own. It’s also essential to maintain an open and honest dialogue as a mainstay of the relationship.” HOW DO YOU COPE WITH HIGHLY STRESSFUL SITUATIONS IN YOUR WORK? Ryan: “Our clients often find themselves in highly stressful, volatile situations and/or high-stakes lawsuits, which is why they hired us in the first place. By absorbing our clients’ stress, instilling or restoring their trust, and successfully ushering them through the civil lawsuit process, we can replace that stress with pride. As for our personnel, most turn to vigorous exercise and/or the love of our pets. A few of us still opt for martinis!”
WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? Jim: “There are a number of avenues to success in law. Good judgment is essential, but as a trial lawyer the best are innately talented, confident and persuasive. Since so much of the practice involves motions and written communications, a good writer who can both distill and streamline a complicated argument and also evoke emotion and imagery will always enjoy a distinct advantage.” GIVE US YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS. Ryan: “Our law firm’s commitment to charity starts with the cases we take on and the indigent, pro bono clients whose cases we champion. Many of our attorneys also donate to important religious and social organizations and notable concerns such as the Cedars-Sinai Foundation, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the Boys & Girls Club, and the Center Theatre Group (Ahmanson Theatre).” SPEAK ABOUT “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” AS IT APPLIES TO YOUR WORK. Jim: “Our community’s most celebrated trial lawyers are naturally the ones who enthrall the gallery with their eloquence in the courtroom and razor-sharp cross-examinations. However, becoming a top-flight advocate actually starts by being a good listener. Really hearing what your client is saying often provides you the nuances necessary to elicit the right testimony and win the day.” HOW DO YOU FIND NEW CLIENTS? “We do not advertise. We rely on word-ofmouth referrals from happy clients, friends, family and colleagues who appreciate our work and results. Of course nothing is more flattering than a referral from a former adversary or a judge.”
HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? Ryan: “By insisting that they take a moment and then call me first.” TELL US SOMETHING UNIQUE ABOUT YOURSELF OR YOUR WORK THAT OTHERS MAY NOT KNOW. Jim: “I am an ardent collector of historic artifacts and social and political Americana.” TELL US ABOUT YOUR RECENT MOVE. “We are thrilled to move the main office of our 10-lawyer firm to the South Bay. After practicing in Beverly Hills for more than a quarter-century, we are all looking forward to working and contributing to the communities where our partners live and our kids go to school. As if that isn’t enough, we’ll be improving our quality of life by reclaiming large chunks of our time to enjoy with our friends and families in the wonderful Beach Cities.” IS THE CURRENT SIZE OF YOUR FIRM LIKELY TO CHANGE WHEN YOU MOVE TO THE SOUTH BAY? “We have always favored slow, deliberate growth, so adding a handful of lawyers over time wouldn’t surprise us. However, our size works to our benefit. Rosen Saba is small enough to maintain a close-knit, collegial environment, but we have plenty of resources at our disposal to do battle with any behemoth law firm, which happens frequently.” WILL YOU HAVE ANY OTHER LOCATIONS BESIDES YOUR NEW HEADQUARTERS ON ROSECRANS AVENUE? “Yes. At about the same time we christen our new South Bay offices, we will also open and staff a satellite office in Downtown Santa Barbara. This outpost will enable us to better serve our clients along the Central Coast and California’s ‘Breadbasket,’ where we have had good success.”
2301 ROSECRANS AVE., SUITE 3180, EL SEGUNDO | 310-285-1727 | ROSENSABA.COM
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
RUNNING POINT CAPITAL ADVISORS Jim Schlager, Founder and Managing General Partner
unning Point Capital Advisors is a multifamily financial services office founded in early 2020 by veteran South Bay financial advisor Jim Schlager to offer families and families who own a business the many benefits of having a full slate of financial professionals all under one roof. Running Point takes a onefamily, one-team approach, whereby family clients can utilize a team of professionals representing a broad array of financial disciplines, including wealth management, financial planning, tax strategies and preparation, trusts and estate planning, insurance services, and business management. TELL US ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND. “I began my financial professional career nearly 30 years ago, then merged my first wealth management firm with Moss Adams LLP, the highly respected tax and consulting firm. During my 18 years with the firm, I worked alongside a talented tax and consulting team and saw firsthand how working with multiple financial professionals on a common goal resulted in great outcomes. But the process could be inefficient and take more time than necessary. Hence my vision of Running Point was born out of an increasing need for families and families who own a business to have all things financial delivered seamlessly, with key financial professionals all under one roof.” HOW DOES “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” APPLY TO YOUR WORK? “One of our core values is taking the time to truly know our clients—their goals, their dreams, their families, their businesses. That personal but deeply professional approach is how we deliver solutions that are customtailored for each client family. One size never fits all.”
WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? “The problem for so many families of wealth is the need to juggle countless financial balls in the course of creating and preserving wealth, filing tax returns, managing a business and so on. That’s extremely timedemanding. If you’re fortunate, maybe you have the time to be your own quarterback and coordinate the endless financial decisions you have to make with the array of professionals you work with. But every dropped ball, every email not answered or phone call not returned costs you precious time. That equates to lost hours with your family, opportunity costs and often extreme frustration. Our unique approach at Running Point is ‘one family, one team.’ We are a multifamily office: a diverse group of advisory professionals with deep skills in a range of specialties who provide bespoke advice to our clients. We’re all within the same organization, working as a team for each family client. We save our clients a tremendous amount of time and frustration.” IN WHAT WAYS DOES YOUR FIRM MAKE OUR COMMUNITY A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE? “The South Bay community has provided our firm with the foundation for our success, so we feel it’s important to give back. I served three years as a Manhattan Beach city planning commissioner and am a former member of the Manhattan Beach Education Foundation Board. I currently serve on the South Bay Police and Fire Department Memorial Foundation Board and the Manhattan Beach Rotary Board. My wife, Lisa, and I have raised two children here. I’ve coached practically every sport, helped lead Adventure Guide groups, and Lisa has been deeply involved with social and emotional wellness programs in the school district.”
WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “Having earned the label ‘trusted advisor’ is greatly fulfilling. What does that take? Such a thorough understanding of our clients that we gain their deep trust. Our clients know we truly care about their families and that we always have their best interests in mind. That kind of rapport is hugely gratifying. It’s also fulfilling to work with clients whose values are aligned with ours, including devotion to family and community, service to others and always doing the right thing.” HOW DO YOU DEEPEN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH CLIENTS? “Quoting senior financial advisor Liz deSousa: ‘Running Point is not a huge, impersonal firm where advisors don’t know their colleagues or clients well. We know each other personally and genuinely care about each other. Each of us knows the name of every client. We are a family, and clients are part of our family. When clients know they have a smart, caring team behind them, they can make better financial decisions.’”
Disclaimer: This should not be considered investment advice or an offer to sell any product. Running Point is an independent investment adviser registered under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, as amended. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. More information about Running Point, including our investment strategies, fees and objectives can be found in our ADV Part 2, which is available upon request. The opinions expressed are those of Running Point Capital Advisors, LLC (Running Point) and are subject to change without notice. The opinions referenced are as of the date of publication, may be modified due to changes in the market or economic conditions, and may not necessarily come to pass. RP-21-36
101 N. PACIFIC COAST HWY., EL SEGUNDO | 424-502-3501 | RUNNINGPOINTCAPITAL.COM
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
L to R: Josh Forrester, CPA, Senior Tax Manager Jerry Schnaus, JD, CPA, Estate Attorney Liz DeSousa, CFP, Senior Financial Advisor Todd Stern, CPA, Tax Manager Tammy Trenta-Knowlton, CFP, Partner Jim Schlager, CFP, Managing General Partner Tina Conaway, Senior Accountant Michael Schulman, CFA, Partner, Chief Investment Officer Daniel Kerr, CFP, Senior Financial Advisor
LAW OFFICES OF WILLIAM P. GLAVIN Bill Glavin, Owner
he Law Offices of William P. Glavin is a law firm specializing exclusively in family law matters including divorce, legal separation, custody, paternity, domestic violence and other issues. Owner Bill Glavin started the firm in 1997 and has worked in the legal field for 33 years. WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “We are guided by the principle that there is no substitution for hard work or thorough case preparation when it comes to the practice of law and our performance of services for our clients. We commit substantial time to establish strong attorney-client relationships built on trust and understanding of the client’s goals and objectives so they may be successfully achieved to the client’s satisfaction. Through the assistance of well-trained support staff, we enhance the quality of service provided to our clients. In addition to secretarial support, law clerks and paralegals are used in routine matters to help minimize costs for our clients. Our experienced associates include Adam R. Taylor, Winivere G. Sy, Ana Schmidt and mediatorattorney Gina L. Chodler. The firm also has a network of highly qualified experts who assist them in various aspects of case preparation and presentation. All of these processes allow the Law Offices of William P. Glavin to provide superior legal services while minimizing costs to the client.” WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? “Every case brings a unique set of facts. We take the time to educate our clients about the law and to share our professional opinions with them so they can make informed decisions as to how they want to proceed with their cases. We then put together case plans—including plans for discovery and retaining expert witnesses (when
necessary)—to ensure that we maximize our clients’ chances for success.” WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “I take great pride in being a lawyer and appreciate the opportunities that gives me to help my clients through what is likely one of the most difficult times in their lives. Going through a divorce can be terrifying. Potential clients are typically worried about where they are going to live, how they are going to pay their bills and how often they will be able to see their children. Earning our clients’ trust and hearing how grateful they are once the process is over is what I find most fulfilling.” WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? “Success is a difficult thing to measure in family law. There can be considerable costs (including time, opportunity costs, and emotional and psychological tolls) that need to be weighed against the financial results that might be obtained. If it would take $100,000 in fees and costs to take a case to trial to obtain $500,000, you could argue that it would be money well spent. However, if that same case can be settled in half the time for $450,000 and only cost $50,000 to the client, they will be much better off. For that reason, we primarily measure our success in the satisfaction of our clients. To achieve that kind of success, we utilize our thorough knowledge of the law and the experience we have acquired over decades of practice to fashion a case plan that will generate the best value to the client—after taking into consideration each client’s particular needs and priorities." HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “Sometimes this can be very hard to do, and what may appear to be a rash decision to
us may have been carefully considered by the client. The best we can do to help protect our clients from themselves is to make sure they are thoroughly informed of the law and the different possible outcomes of settlement and litigation.” HOW DO YOU COPE WITH HIGHLY STRESSFUL SITUATIONS IN YOUR WORK? “The best way to avoid overly stressful situations is by making sure we’re prepared better than the other side. Sometimes, however, emergencies come up that require long hours. At those times, stress is unavoidable. But because of the way we manage our cases, we are able to maximize our firm’s resources by working as a team to always make sure we get everything done in order to take care of our clients.” TELL US SOMETHING INTERESTING ABOUT FAMILY LAW. “Family law is a very complex field with nuanced rules that are extremely factdependent. It is crucial that you hire an attorney who is thoroughly experienced in family law. We are always shocked when we come across an attorney who only ‘dabbles’ in family law, which is usually readily apparent. Those ‘part-timers’ almost always take meritless positions that inevitably end up losing in court—but only after forcing both parties to incur considerable attorney fees and costs.” HOW DOES YOUR WORK MAKE OUR COMMUNITY A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE? “On its face, this might seem like a difficult question for any divorce attorney to answer. The truth is that divorce is a rather common occurrence, and we are able to make our community a better place to live by protecting our clients and their interests while doing everything we can to help them remove the emotion and contentiousness from what is almost always a very stressful situation."
841 APOLLO ST., SUITE 450, EL SEGUNDO | 310-882-0000 | GLAVINLAW.COM
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
L to R: Wini Sy, Adam Taylor, Bill Glavin, Gina Chodler, Ana Sulit-Schmidt
STUMPO WEALTH MANAGEMENT GROUP UBS FINANCIAL SERVICES, INC. Gino R. Stumpo, CFP , CRPC , Managing Director – Wealth Management ®
ino Stumpo is a wealth adviser and portfolio manager at UBS Financial Services, Inc. He has more than 20 years of experience in wealth management, where his career has focused on serving the needs of successful high net worth individuals and families. Gino is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional as well as a CHARTERED RETIREMENT PLANNING COUNSELOR. TELL US ABOUT YOUR WORK. “Having worked with affluent families in Orange County and Los Angeles for more than 20 years, I manage more than $500 million in client assets. As an experienced CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional, I also assist wealthy families in putting together comprehensive financial plans—all while making sure the investments are in line with their short- and long-term financial goals. When needed, I coordinate with other professionals, such as estate attorneys and tax advisors. I am extremely detailed, and no rock goes unturned.” HOW DID YOU CHOOSE TO WORK IN THIS INDUSTRY? “During college, I heard a financial advisor speak at a finance club meeting, and I was immediately hooked. I landed an internship at Smith Barney a few weeks later and have never looked back. I started my career with nothing more than a pen and an idea: Become the best financial advisor in the country. By working countless hours to better serve my clients, I am proud to have an extremely successful practice today. I am a planner by nature, so I enjoy working with clients, and creating comprehensive and robust financial plans.”
IN WHAT WAYS HAS YOUR WORK EXCEEDED EXPECTATIONS? “I made the Forbes Best-In-State Wealth Advisors list in 2019, 2020 and most recently in 2021, when I was ranked #7 in California.” HOW DO YOU DEEPEN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH CLIENTS? “I have built my practice around being a financial ‘concierge’ to my clients, and in doing so I understand that building and maintaining wealth goes beyond numbers and investments. I maintain an open dialogue with my clients throughout the year, year after year, which not only allows me to tailor their financial plans to meet their needs, but together we can coordinate for larger expenses as the needs arise. I find that being proactive rather than reactive when it comes to investment and liquidity needs has helped deepened my clients’ trust in me–even during times of market volatility.” HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS FEEL THEY ARE IN GOOD HANDS? “In addition to personal financial planning, I believe it is equally important to prioritize family financial goals. As of late, I have been talking about wealth with my clients’ children and grandchildren. Historically, this has been a delicate subject, but I find that many clients would like assistance in having these conversations. I have been doing my part to help clients navigate this subject. In times like these, it makes sense to have multiple sources of liquidity—not only for you but for your loved ones. As a holistic financial planner, I go beyond the numbers when making recommendations to clients. Having access to different sources of cash when you need it most will provide the flexibility needed to maintain a strong financial portfolio.”
TELL US ABOUT YOUR FAMILY. “My wife and I moved to Newport Coast in 2012 and enjoy every day with our two boys, Lucca and Nicco, and our goofy goldendoodle, Bentley. Our baby girl, Gianna, is due in early November, and we could not be more excited.”
Disclaimer: Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, Certified Financial PlannerTM in the U.S. For designation disclosures visit ubs.com/us/en/designationdisclosures. Forbes/SHOOK Best-in-State Wealth Advisors list is comprised of approximately 4,000 financial advisors. It was developed by SHOOK Research and is based on in-person and telephone due diligence meetings to measure factors such as: quality of practice, industry experience, compliance record, assets under management (which vary from state to state) and revenue. Neither UBS Financial Services Inc. or its employees pay a fee in exchange for these ratings. Past performance is not an indication of future results. Investment performance is not a criterion because client objectives and risk tolerances vary, and advisors rarely have audited performance reports. Rankings are based on the opinions of SHOOK Research, LLC and not indicative of future performance or representative of any one client’s experience. Gino Stumpo is a Financial Advisor with UBS Financial Services Inc. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice. Investing involves risks and there is always the potential of losing money when you invest. The views expressed herein are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect the views of UBS Financial Services Inc. As a firm providing wealth management services to clients, UBS Financial Services Inc. offers both investment advisory services and brokerage services. Investment advisory services and brokerage services are separate and distinct, differ in material ways and are governed by different laws and separate arrangements. It is important that clients understand the ways in which we conduct business and that they carefully read the agreements and disclosures that we provide to them about the products or services we offer. For more information visit our website at ubs.com/workingwithus. UBS Financial Services Inc. is a subsidiary of UBS AG. Member FINRA/SIPC.
2121 ROSECRANS AVENUE, SUITE 1300, EL SEGUNDO | 3030 OLD RANCH PARKWAY, SUITE 300, SEAL BEACH 562-343-9229 | GINO.STUMPO@UBS.COM | UBS.COM/TEAM/STUMPO
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NORTHWESTERN MUTUAL Paul Baboolal, Wealth Management Advisor
aul Baboolal is a wealth management advisor at Northwestern Mutual Manhattan Beach with nearly 30 years of experience. He uses a centralized approach that offers clients the opportunity to have a single holistic financial plan—with one planner—for their entire lifetime. Paul partners with successful attorneys, business owners, commercial real estate developers and South Bay families to assist clients with their financial goals. He also educates clients on financial literacy and wealth management strategies and solutions. Paul started his career with Northwestern Mutual as a college intern in September 1992 and began working full time upon graduation from UCLA. He has been a member of the Northwestern Mutual Forum—the top segment of the firm’s industry-leading field force—11 times. WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “Having been in the business for 29 years, I’ve been able to see my clients achieve some incredible financial goals. Knowing that we had some part in setting them up for success makes the hard work worth it. I love rooting for my clients’ progress. Doing it alongside a highly skilled team that is as laser-focused on our clients’ needs as I am is fulfilling and energizing.” WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR YOUR CLIENTS? “We help clients achieve financial peace of mind by helping them see the bigger picture of their financial situation and simplifying anything that feels too complex to tackle. For example, many of our clients are greatly impacted by taxes. We help create buckets for them where their money can grow tax-efficiently.” HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “Our planning process is educational, so our
clients are typically not surprised or fearful even during significant market events. When clients come to us with concerns, we remind them that their plan was meant to withstand the ups and downs of the market and has been stress-tested from the very beginning.” SPEAK ABOUT “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” AS IT APPLIES TO YOUR WORK. “Our clients’ objectives are our primary concern. We wouldn’t want to build this business any other way. We seek to understand not only our clients’ goals but also the ‘why’ behind those goals. We draft a customized plan only after we have fully understood their needs—never before.” HOW DO YOU DEEPEN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH CLIENTS? “We understand that clients plan not just for today but for future generations. In helping them establish a foundation meant to stand the test of time, we become partners in building their legacy. We enjoy establishing connections with the next generation so the plan can continue to thrive.” GIVE US YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS. “We feel that is a privilege to give back to our community. As partners of the Hermosa Beach Education Foundation and the Hermosa Beach Little League, we are focused on improving the lives of future generations—especially when it comes to financial literacy. Giving young people the gift of financial education will set them up for success in the future.” WHAT ARE YOU ESPECIALLY GRATEFUL FOR TODAY? “I am grateful for my health and the health of my family, as well as the gift of being able to conduct business virtually while making
an equally strong impact on our clients’ lives. While we aren’t totally out of the woods yet, we are thankful that people in our community are keeping each other safe by valuing their health and the health of those around them. I believe we will come back from this stronger than we were before.” IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? “In my 29 years with Northwestern Mutual, change has been the only constant. Now we are meeting with clients virtually more often than we ever have, and we’re able to serve people regardless of their location. While our industry may change, our client-first approach remains the same. We’re here to help people weather whatever changes life may throw at them.” WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “Knowing what you know and knowing what you don’t know. We help our clients connect with professionals outside Northwestern Mutual to create a plan that is fortified on all fronts. The other key is integrity. We always do what we say we’re going to do. This is a baseline value that our entire team is expected to uphold.”
Disclaimer: Northwestern Mutual is the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company (NM) (life and disability Insurance, annuities, and life insurance with long-term care benefits) and its subsidiaries, including Northwestern Long Term Care Insurance Company (NLTC) (long-term care insurance), Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC (NMIS) (investment brokerage services), a registered investment adviser, broker-dealer, and member of FINRA and SIPC, and Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company® (NMWMC) (investment advisory and trust services), a federal savings bank. NM and its subsidiaries are in Milwaukee, WI. Paul Baboolal is an Insurance Agent of NM and NLTC. Investment brokerage services provided as a Registered Representative of NMIS. Investment advisory services provided as an Advisor of NMWMC.
1230 ROSECRANS AVE., SUITE 100, MANHATTAN BEACH | 310-460-7140 | PAULBABOOLAL.COM
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L to R: Client service representative Liz Hernandez, Paul Baboolal, investment analyst Andra Phillips
STRATEGIC VIEW ADVISORS Edward Moyzes, CEO
trategic View Advisors is a financial planning team led by CEO Edward Moyzes, operating under the umbrella of the Northwestern Mutual Private Client Group. Northwestern Mutual has been in business for the past 163 years. Edward earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in accounting and worked as an accountant before transitioning to financial planning almost 20 years ago. He maintains the Chartered Life Underwriter® and Retirement Income Certified Professional® designations, as well as the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification. WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “The successes of my clients and our team members. Whether it’s a client enjoying retirement, sending their kids off to college, buying a second home or celebrating the birth of their first grandchild, we’re privileged to be able to help them align their wealth to their values. Similarly, watching our team members learn and grow in their careers brings incredible satisfaction.” IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? “In the past, the industry marketed itself as being the gatekeeper to information. The selling point was that if you tried to do it on your own, you couldn’t find the data you needed. With the internet, information is ubiquitous, so the best advising teams are providing value by being able to simply but effectively communicate complex information, allowing clients to take informed action towards their goals.”
WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? “Empathy and technical acumen. An advisor can have every credential on earth, but if they don’t care to understand your desires and the ‘why’ behind them, it is extremely unlikely they will be able to help you achieve them. Similarly, all the niceness in the world will get you nowhere if it isn’t backed with deep financial planning knowledge.” HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “When a client first comes to us, we spend time building a financial plan and educating them on how markets work and what they should expect as investors. If we wait until equities are in a freefall to tell clients about market risk, it’s too late. As a result, we’re proud to say that none of our clients panicked out of the portfolios we were managing for them during the 2020 downturn.” HOW DO YOU FIND NEW CLIENTS? “From existing clients! We pride ourselves on doing such good work that our clients introduce us to their friends, family and colleagues. While we also meet new people through other professionals, most of our new clients come from introductions from existing clients.” WHAT IS YOUR #1 PIECE OF ADVICE DURING THIS TIME OF UNCERTAINTY? “All times are uncertain, and your plan— along with the investments you use to support that plan—should account for that uncertainty. Amid COVID-19 things seem particularly uncertain, but are they really any more uncertain than in January 2020 when things seemed fine? The reality is that we never know what is coming next, which is why we are careful to emphasize the importance of planning. A good plan backed by a caring, knowledgeable team can help you navigate the uncertainty rather than letting the inevitable crises knock you off course.”
HOW DO YOU COPE WITH HIGHLY STRESSFUL SITUATIONS IN YOUR WORK? “We built a team. Too many people in this field are out there trying to do this on their own, but it gets lonely and tiring. No matter how much stress we might encounter, we know we’re not alone. There are always people who care for us and are willing to support us when the going gets rough.” WHAT ARE CONSUMERS FAILING TO ASK OF THEIR FINANCIAL ADVISORS? “What is your succession plan? Any advisor telling you they will always be there for you is making a statement they likely don’t intend to stand by and certainly can’t promise. Ask your advisor how your planning will be handled when they retire or if they pass away suddenly. If they don’t have an answer, start looking for a replacement now because you’re going to have to sooner or later.”
Disclaimer: Edward Moyzes, Christopher Hall, Carol Bates, Steven Evensen, Mollie Kaiser and Shanelle Sua use Strategic View Advisors as a marketing name for doing business as representatives of Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company® (NMWMC) and Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC (NMIS). Strategic View Advisors is not a registered investment adviser, broker-dealer, insurance agency or federal savings bank. Edward Moyzes, Christopher Hall, Carol Bates, Steven Evensen, Mollie Kaiser and Shanelle Sua provide investment advisory services as Advisors of NMWMC, a subsidiary of The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, located in Milwaukee, WI (NM) and a federal savings bank, and provide investment brokerage services as Registered Representatives of NMIS, a subsidiary of NM and a registered investment adviser, broker-dealer and member FINRA (finra.org) and SIPC (sipc.org). Northwestern Mutual Private Client Group is a select group of Northwestern Mutual advisors and representatives. Northwestern Mutual Private Client Group is not a registered investment adviser, brokerdealer, insurance agency, federal savings bank or other legal entity.
1230 ROSECRANS AVE., SUITE 100, MANHATTAN BEACH | 213 243-7150 | STRATEGICVIEWADVISORS.COM
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L to R, back: Rhodes Wall, Shanelle Sua, Kennia Litteral, Carol Bates, Alessandra Di Monda, Matt Mac Front: Jeff Hennings, Chris Hall, Steve Evensen, Ed Moyzes, Mollie Kaiser
MIONI FAMILY LAW, APC Lovette Mioni, Owner, & Christopher Choi, Attorney
ovette Mioni is a Certified Family Law Specialist who attended Southwestern Law School and opened Mioni Family Law in 2015. Her associate Christopher Choi attended law school at the University of Illinois before joining her firm. Both attorneys practice family law exclusively. WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “We are helping people through one of the most difficult times in their lives. We try to do so with empathy and as efficiently as possible while obtaining the best results for our clients.” WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? “If a case can be settled in a way that allows our clients to get a good and fair result, we settle it. However, not all cases can be settled, as sometimes spouses or opposing attorneys take incorrect or unreasonable positions. In those instances, we litigate and we litigate well. We also sometimes utilize private judges instead of going to court for matters that may be tied up for a long time in the court system, which allows our client to get better results more efficiently.” IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? “We are utilizing private judges more and more. The courts are extremely overburdened, and thus a divorce or paternity matter that needs to be heard in court can be a long, frustrating process. Hiring a private judge allows us to get our clients results much quicker—and oftentimes with better results—than going through the regular court system. When the courts were shut down during the height of COVID-19, private judges were still able to hear our cases through video conferences, and we were able to move cases forward when others were stuck waiting for the courts to open back up.” HOW DO YOU FIND NEW CLIENTS? “Most of our clients come to us through referrals: past clients, friends of past clients, family of past clients. On a few occasions we’ve even received a referral from the spouse of our client because they thought we did a better job than their own attorney.” GIVE US YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS. “Attorneys are expensive, and not everyone has equal access to the legal system. We do take on pro bono (legal services we provide for free) cases that are referred to us through the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, or if we come across a case that really pulls at the heartstrings or if there is a great injustice.”
1815 VIA EL PRADO, SUITE 203, REDONDO BEACH | 424-259-1770 | MIONIFAMILYLAW.COM
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Audrey A. Stansbury, CFP®, AAMS®, Financial Advisor
s a financial advisor for Edward Jones, Audrey Stansbury helps local families meet their financial goals, including retirement plans, insurance needs, education savings and estate considerations. Audrey joined Edward Jones in 2004 and was named a limited partner in 2014. IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? “Our industry is changing from focusing primarily on investments to a more holistic approach to wealth management. After much research, we have determined that most Americans view retirement as a new beginning—a time of tremendous opportunity but one that has its challenges and complexities across the pillars of health, family, purpose and finances.” SPEAK ABOUT “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” AS IT APPLIES TO YOUR WORK. “I think it is very important to understand the needs of my clients to determine what is most important to them. I may think I know what should be most important, but that isn’t always the case. Therefore, in my practice I use a simple interactive quiz to determine priorities. Clients answer a series of questions before our appointment to determine which priorities are most important to them, such as traveling, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, pursuing a passion, etc. Once we have identified these priorities, not only do I get a better understanding of their goals but my clients do as well. Next we can explore these priorities to learn how they relate to their financial strategy.” WHAT IS YOUR #1 PIECE OF ADVICE DURING THIS TIME OF UNCERTAINTY? “My #1 piece of advice right now is to be prepared for the unexpected. This preparedness can range from having enough money in emergency funds, using a life insurance needs analysis to make sure your loved ones are covered in a time of tragedy, to making sure you contact your attorney to review your estate documents such as a will and/or a trust. A financial advisor can help you determine which goal is the most important and keep you on track to check these off your list.” WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO BE A “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “The #1 criterion is for your clients to understand and believe that you can help them with all aspects of their lives. In my industry, this would encompass finding someone they can build a long-term relationship with to help with all aspects of their financial strategy."
1230 ROSECRANS AVE., SUITE 290, MANHATTAN BEACH | 310-725-7034 | EDWARDJONES.COM/AUDREY-STANSBURY SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
CHASE LAW GROUP, PC DeAnn Flores Chase, Founder, & Scott Liner, Employment Attorney
hase Law Group is a full-service law firm that helps business owners create legal structures that form the foundation for a successful business. Before founding the firm in 2007, principal attorney DeAnn Chase defended businesses in litigated, complex business matters. She has practiced law for 25 years. Employment attorney Scott Liner has more than 25 years of experience representing employers in and out of court. He regularly advises clients regarding employment law issues including wage and hour concerns, medical leaves, separations and other critical employment policies. WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO BE A “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? DeAnn: “I am proud for my clients to call me their trusted advisor. It is not a title I take for granted as it is truly earned through consistently being a safe, reliable resource. My clients feel at ease in confiding sensitive information to me, knowing that I have only their best interests at heart and will help them reach their desired outcome.” WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN LAW? Scott: “Over the years I have found that clients demand both expertise and responsiveness. I always do my best to be available and get back to them as quickly as possible. Also, you can’t use a cookie-cutter approach with clients. It’s important to listen to both what they say and what they do not say so you can more completely understand their issues of concern and what solutions they really need.” HOW DO YOU DEEPEN RELATIONSHIPS WITH CLIENTS? DeAnn: “Our small size allows us to develop deep relationships with our clients based on trust, integrity and mutual respect. We know every client by name and provide legal counsel based on their unique background and concerns. Responsiveness and efficiency are cornerstones of our practice, and clients rely on us to be part of their team. Every person in our firm cares about the success of our business and our clients.” DO YOU SEE ANY TRENDS OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS IN EMPLOYMENT LAW ISSUES THAT YOUR CLIENTS FACE? Scott: “In addition to dealing with all things COVID-19 over the past two years, wage and hour claims remain the biggest challenge facing employers. Whether class actions, Private Attorney General Act claims or simply ensuring that their business is compliant with California’s vast array of labor laws, the best approach for an employer is to be proactive and consult with counsel ahead of time and not wait until a problem or claim surfaces.”
1001 6TH ST., SUITE 150, MANHATTAN BEACH | 310-545-7700 | CHASELAWMB.COM
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SIGNATURE ESTATE & INVESTMENT ADVISORS, LLC Vince A. DiLeva, MS, CFP, AIF, Senior Partner
ignature Estate & Investment Advisors, LLC® (SEIA) is an independent Registered Investment Advisory firm offering wealth management and financial planning services to affluent individuals, families and business owners. Senior partner Vince DiLeva joined the firm in 1997 and has obtained a Master of Science degree in financial planning and the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation. He and his team assist clients with all aspects of investment management, retirement planning, estate and legacy planning, tax planning, philanthropic and family foundation management, college savings and insurance. WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? “We have a broad client base spanning every phase of life— from young professionals to those well into retirement. We understand that there is not a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to providing financial solutions. We promote a collaborative process with each of our clients from the start, taking care to understand their personal objectives on an individual basis. We tailor our advice to ensure we are meeting the client’s specific needs, encouraging client involvement along the way. This collaborative approach allows us to gain a deeper understanding of our clients, while also providing them with the information needed to be a more informed investor. As an independent investment advisor, we are uniquely positioned to be able to provide a variety of unbiased solutions.” WHAT ARE SOME UNIQUE STRATEGIES SEIA HAS ACCESS TO? “Clients need advisors who have the tools to address not only their unique life circumstances but also a range of market conditions. With current stock and bond prices looking expensive, the alternative asset class looks attractive. We would consider investing in things like middle-market lending, private credit, private real estate and market/neutral strategies. Also we would recommend investments in some noncorrelated, small-cap growth companies through private equity funds. For clients looking for some downside protection, you can also consider buffered/structured notes or ETFs. The alternative strategy we choose all depends on a client’s goals and objectives.”
L to R: Vince DiLeva, Sara Hendrix, Tamara Patterson, Jeff Zuanich
Disclaimer: Securities offered through Royal Alliance Associates, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through SEIA, LLC. Royal Alliance Associates, Inc. is separately owned and other entities and/or marketing names, products or services referenced here are independent of Royal Alliance Associates, Inc. (CA Insurance License Vince DiLeva #0B84300). Opinions expressed here are the authors’ and do not necessarily represent the opinions of SEIA. Alternative investments are speculative and may not be suitable for all clients, as investors must be willing to bear the high economic risks of the investments.
1848 S. ELENA AVE., SUITE 100, REDONDO BEACH | 310-712-2320 | SEIA.COM SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
BAKER, BURTON & LUNDY PC
aker, Burton & Lundy is a full-service law firm featuring lawyers who specialize in personal injury, civil rights and sexual harassment cases as well as provide expertise in the areas of estate planning, business and real estate law. Brad N. Baker and Kent Burton founded the law firm in 1976 and invited Albro L. Lundy III to join the partnership in 1997, adding Evan Koch in 2018 and Clint Wilson in 2020 as partners. The firm’s eight attorneys together have more than 160 years of experience in the industry. The paralegal team also has significant experience, with most members having worked with Baker, Burton & Lundy for decades. WHAT IS YOUR #1 PIECE OF ADVICE DURING THIS TIME OF UNCERTAINTY? “First count your blessings in life before you concentrate on the challenges. This has a tendency to put things in perspective fairly quickly.”
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “We think that the measuring stick that is used in determining our involvement—what value are we bringing to the client—goes a long way toward building trust. If we do not anticipate that we can add value to our client’s position that is greater than what we estimate we will be paid, then we do not participate. (We do not wish to ever do better than our clients.) Also, considering the number of years our team members have worked with Baker, Burton & Lundy, this long-term commitment helps foster deep and lasting relationships with many clients who use several of the various practice areas of the law firm.” HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “There is no surefire way to control how clients make decisions, but the fact that our attorneys can calmly explain to them their
options in simple terms goes a long way in helping clients remain calm themselves. The years of experience that our attorneys have translates to a better level of comfort for our clients, which also minimizes rash decisions.” HOW DO YOU “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” IN YOUR WORK? “A lot of our work in the law is multifaceted. By that we mean that more than money is usually at stake. The emotional well-being of the client during the process is oftentimes as important (if not more important) than the legal points being discussed. A client who knows that she or he is being heard and understood is the cornerstone of maintaining emotional well-being. Having things explained simply adds to the client’s comfort level. We find that if something cannot be explained simply, it usually means that the person doesn’t understand the concept themselves.”
515 PIER AVE., HERMOSA BEACH | 310-376-9893 | BAKERBURTONLUNDY.COM
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ADISHIAN LAW GROUP, PC | ADISHIAN CAPITAL Chris Adishian, Owner
dishian Law Group advises clients in two main areas: businesses and business owners with revenues of $10 to $200 million, and clients who are active in commercial real estate. Owner Chris Adishian is rated "AV-Preeminent" by his peers, which designates attorneys who are ranked at the highest level of professional excellence for their legal expertise, communication skills and ethical standards. Adishian Capital provides property management and select brokerage services. HOW DID THE PANDEMIC IMPACT YOUR BUSINESS? “2020 was a time of forced change and reflection. Our clients who navigated the pandemic most successfully marshaled the necessary resources—legal, financial, operational—to meet the challenges in front of them and also used the shutdowns to reflect upon their mission, goals and operations to be even better going forward.” TELL US ABOUT SOME RECENT CLIENT SUCCESS STORIES. “This year we closed our largest mergers and acquisitions transaction to date: a health care deal at a near $180 million enterprise value. It was complex, with private equity and two national law firms. For another client, we served as borrower’s counsel on a $6 million term loan under the Federal Reserve’s Main Street Lending Program. We also recently represented a serial entrepreneur in the sale of his ownership interest to his partner.” WHAT IS THE MOST VALUABLE SKILL YOU OFFER CLIENTS? “My core skill set is along the lines of an ‘expert generalist.’ When we look at a challenge or opportunity, we start with legal expertise. To that we bring multidisciplinary experience in math, finance, strategy, governance and negotiation.” WHAT CAN OUR READERS LEARN FROM YOUR MOST SUCCESSFUL CLIENTS? “They are committed to improving their decision-making process in business and life. They understand that the two great equalizers are time and decisions. Over time, the compounded results from a good decision process (and avoiding the compounded result of a bad decision process) dwarf any legal fees. Quite often, the best decision is deciding to not do something.” THREE RECENT READS? “Buffettology; Thinking, Fast and Slow; and Range.” WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE PODCASTS? “I enjoy listening to The Knowledge Project by Shane Parrish, WTF by Marc Maron and ESPN’s 30 for 30.
222 N. PACIFIC COAST HWY., SUITE 2000, EL SEGUNDO ADISHIANLAW.COM | 310-726-0888 | ADISHIANCAP.COM | 310-426-8832 SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
COMPASS Lynn Nakasato-Aglipay, Realtor
fter graduating from California State University, Long Beach with a degree in finance and international marketing, Lynn Nakasato-Aglipay worked in budget planning and eventually managed a midsize starter company as director of finance and accounting. She transitioned to real estate 17 years ago, working first with Keller Williams Palos Verdes and then Vista Sotheby’s International Realty. She joined Compass in September. WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? “Many people think real estate is a glamorous job and that it is easy and fast money. The reality is, it takes hours of hard work, sacrifice and a stiff upper lip to make it in this industry. To achieve success in real estate it’s important to be coachable, ethical and have the right mindset.”
HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “Real estate is one of the biggest transactions one will ever make, yet some people want to just pull the trigger. I educate clients, provide them with all the information and tools they need, then guide them in making the best, most knowledgeable decision.” IN WHAT WAYS DOES YOUR WORK MAKE OUR COMMUNITY A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE? “As a Realtor I work and support several local communities through contributions and community service. On larger scale, as a member of the California Association of Realtors we work with our local officials and advocate for fair and affordable housing, property rights for homeowners, first-time homeowner programs and so many more. It’s not just about buying or selling a home; being a Realtor is about ensuring our communities are well served and represented.”
WHAT IS YOUR #1 PIECE OF ADVICE DURING THIS TIME OF UNCERTAINTY? “Faith—whether that be through religion or just a state of mind. Having faith that everything will be OK, believing in prayer or just knowing and trusting that tomorrow will be a new day. We are all stronger than we think and are challenged with things that we think are beyond our control, but faith will get you through those times of uncertainty.” FAVORITE THANKSGIVING MEMORY? “I have a large extended family. When I was young, my aunts, uncles and cousins would get together almost every weekend. Holidays, especially Thanksgiving, were a big deal. I remember playing with my cousins and then coming in to a table filled with food. The highlight of the night was when my uncle got his projector out and put on a slideshow of when we were babies. I loved that time; that feeling is indescribable.”
21250 HAWTHORNE BLVD., TORRANCE | 310-567-0048 | LYNNAGLIPAY.COM
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NAVIGOE TRUSTEE SERVICES Scott Leonard, CFP , AIF , Owner ®
cott Leonard, a licensed professional fiduciary, serves his clients as a professional trustee, executor and/or guardian. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® professional and owns a fee-only Registered Investment Advisor. Scott started Navigoe 25 years ago and has worked in the industry for 30 years.
final piece to the puzzle. Serving as a trustee also requires personal life experience as a parent, sibling and counselor to help people fulfill their goals and dreams. For an advisor to gain trust, they need to be working with a family for many years so that trust is established over time. ‘Trust’ is not a label but something earned.”
WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “I truly enjoy helping people become financially independent. The education and mentoring process is very rewarding, and I receive great satisfaction watching the confidence and freedom people obtain as they increase their financial IQ and take control of their personal finances.”
WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU SOLVE FOR CLIENTS? “For many wealthy families, finding someone to help manage their estate across multiple beneficiaries is difficult. The trust companies tend to be impersonal. Using family members as trustees comes with its own set of concerns. As our clients’ wealth advisor, we have spent years—sometimes decades—working with them and their family members. It became a natural progression to become a California licensed professional fiduciary to be able to serve as their trustee too. It is my personal knowledge of not just their entire
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO EARN THE LABEL “TRUSTED ADVISOR”? “Experience in a wide range of financial topics—estate, tax, trusts, insurance, investments, retirement, cash-flow, etc.—is the
financial situation but their unique goals and wishes for each member of their family that has allowed me to address the problem of who will help them into the future.” IN WHAT WAYS IS YOUR INDUSTRY CHANGING WITH THE TIMES? “Trust companies have grown to be very large, impersonal investment management companies. Back when a family would have a long-term, personal relationship with their local banker, it was a natural fit to have them serve as successor trustee. But the local community bank has vanished. As a result, huge institutions are now serving as trustees. This has resulted in the need for a different type of professional trustee: an individual who has a long-term relationship with the family and has the experience and expertise to help manage all aspects of their finances. The Licensed Professional Fiduciary, combined with a Registered Investment Advisor, is addressing the issues of the trust companies in this decade.”
417 BERYL ST., REDONDO BEACH | 310-697-0400 | NAVIGOE.COM/SERVICES/TRUSTS SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
LAW OFFICES OF SANFORD JOSSEN Sanford Jossen, Owner
he Law Offices of Sanford Jossen is a boutique law firm with more than 39 years of experience. Owner Sanford Jossen and his team assist clients in a variety of personal injury and civil cases. They also provide mediation and arbitration services and are actively involved in the Los Angeles legal community. WHAT FULFILLS YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR CAREER? “Many of our clients are victims of negligent conduct and have suffered serious injuries. Obtaining a good result for our clients and seeing them repair themselves and rebuild their lives is a great source of satisfaction. It is also satisfying to hold the responsible party to account—especially if they are a government entity where others are also affected by the wrongful conduct. Seeing positive change occur can be very gratifying.” WHAT SKILLS ARE NECESSARY TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS IN YOUR INDUSTRY? “There is no substitute for hard work, attention and client care. There is no easy way to obtain a result for a client other than attention to a client’s case including the details that can be critical and putting in the hard work, which every case deserves.” HOW DO YOU HELP YOUR CLIENTS AVOID MAKING RASH DECISIONS? “It is our practice to explain to every client every option available to them at every critical stage of the case so they can make an intelligent, informed decision as to what course they want to take. While we will make suggestions, it is the client who has the ultimate power to determine the course of his or her case.” HOW DO YOU DEEPEN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH YOUR CLIENTS? “Many of our clients turn to us to assist them with issues in addition to their cases because they develop personal relationships with our staff over the course of their case. Although we cannot always help them, it is gratifying that our clients return to us when they need advice or counsel.” SPEAK ABOUT “SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND AND THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD” AS IT APPLIES TO YOUR WORK. “Communication in the legal field is important. In any case there are at least three sides: the client’s side, the opponent’s side, the trier of fact’s side. I have mediated thousands of cases, and one must both understand the opponent’s view and a potential trier of fact’s view of the case as well as effectively communicate the client’s position in order to accomplish justice in any case.”
136 MAIN ST., SUITE E, EL SEGUNDO | 310-546-9118 | JOSSENLAWFIRM.COM
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
C R E AT I N G V I D E O F O R YO U R L I S T I N G S I S O N LY E X P E N S I V E I F N O O N E I S W AT C H I N G . H o m e F i l m s i s a f u l l y i n t e g ra t e d , re a l e s t a t e v i d e o p ro d u c t i o n a n d d i g i t a l d i s t r i b u t i o n p a c ka g e . O u r t a l e n t e d f i l m m a k i n g t e a m a r t i s t i c a l l y t e l l s t h e s t o r y o f w h a t m a ke s y o u r l i s t i n g u n i q u e . A n d o u r t a rg e t e d d i g i t a l d i s t r i b u t i o n e n s u re s t h a t t h e r i g h t p o t e n t i a l b u y e r s a re s e e i n g y o u r p ro p e r t y i n t h e m o s t b e a u t i f u l l i g h t.
BEST IN CLASS FILMMAKERS
Fo r m o re i n f o r m a t i o n : M a rc i e G u t i e r re z a t m a rc i e @ t h e g o l d e n s t a t e c o m p a n y.c o m
Manhattan Beach Located in a prime, sand section neighborhood on a corner lot, this stunning 4300 square foot home has 4 bedrooms plus an office/5th bedroom, large, open living spaces and beautiful views and vistas. Quality workmanship combined with designer amenities throughout are often hard to find in today’s market. $5,950,000
R E A L E S TAT E
New construction in Palos Verdes Estates This elegant home located in the tree-lined Valmonte neighborhood of Palos Verdes Estates was completed just weeks ago. High ceilings, wood floors and 4 en-suite bedrooms combine to make this home the crown jewel on a coveted street. 4004 Via Nivel, Palos Verdes Estates Listed by Cari Corbalis and Britt Austin | Vista Sotheby’s International Realty 310-938-9167 | www.cariandbritt.com | BRE# 01799654 | BRE# 00850678
238 First Street Hermosa Beach, CA
Panoramic ocean views, 2 blocks from The Strand Fully remodeled in 2016 | 3,340 SF | 5 BD, 3.5 BA including attached ADU – $3,599,000
30629 Rue Valois
Rancho Palos Verdes, CA Single level home with amazing ocean views | 4 BD and 2.5 BA | 2,113 SF | 10,968 SF lot – LISTED – $1,799,000
532 The Strand Hermosa Beach, CA
Incredible views and sunsets | 2 BD + 1.5 bath | oceanfront unit with a large patio deck area | 1 garage space + resident parking pass – FOR LEASE – $5,500 per month
Raju Chhabria BRE: 00874072
Philo Chhabria BRE: 00897605
Neil Chhabria BRE: 01821437
Anand Chhabria BRE: 01908741
Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed, buyer to conduct own investigations.
4004 Via Nivel, Palos Verdes Estates 4 bedrooms all en suite | 4.5 bathrooms | 3,150 square feet | $3,600,000 This Tomaro-designed Valmonte home is a rare opportunity to purchase a newly constructed residence in this premier neighborhood. This luxurious home on a tree-lined street presents a stunning mix of cutting-edge design by Noelle Interiors, exquisite craftsmanship and top-quality finishes.
310/938-9167 cariandbritt.com BRITT: BRE# 01799654 CARI: BRE# 00850678
117 CREST DRIVE, MANHATTAN BEACH
124 21ST PLACE, MANHATTAN BEACH
#1 LUXURY REAL ESTATE TEAM IN THE SOUTH BAY 137 15TH STREET, MANHATTAN BEACH
732 THE STRAND, HERMOSA BEACH
5 BEDS | 6 BATHS | 4716 SF | 3000 SF LOT | $5,999,000
2504 PINE AVENUE, MANHATTAN BEACH
310-374-1800 caskeyandcaskey.com LIC#01198999
1145 FISHER AVENUE, MANHATTAN BEACH
201 21ST PLACE, MANHATTAN BEACH
Our neighborhood, your home.
6810 Crest Rd, Rancho Palos Verdes Represented Buyer $3,365,058
DARIN DERENZIS 310.418.6210 | email@example.com DRE# 01760239
MEREDITH JOHNSON DERENZIS 310.600.7973 | firstname.lastname@example.org DRE# 01907722
Scan to see more properties sold by DeRenzis Real Estate.
713.264.1275 | email@example.com Each office is independently owned and operated.
310.463.9118 | firstname.lastname@example.org
R P ED R U ICE C TI O N
999 Paseo La Cresta, Palos Verdes Estates | $9,688,000 |www.999paseolacresta.com 7 Bd | 8 Ba | 10,484 sq.ft | 42,718 sq.ft lot | (Almost 1 Acre Lot) | 4 Car Garage
964 Via Rincon, Palos Verdes Estates | $5,495,000 | www.964viarincon.com Newly Built 2007 | 2 Bd + Study | 3,147 sq.ft. | 21,684 sq.ft. lot | 2 Car Garage
HOME TO THE FINEST COLLECTION HOME TOESTATE THE FINEST COLLECTION OF REAL EXPERTS IN THE SOUTH BAY. OF REAL ESTATE EXPERTS IN THE SOUTH BAY.
+1 310 373 3333 | 310 902 7799 Text STRANDHILL.COM STRANDHILL.COM
STRAND HILL | CHRISTIE’S INTERNATIONAL REAL ESTATE LICENSE #01968431. THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS DOCUMENT, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, SQUARE FOOTAGE AND/OR
STRAND HILL|CHRISTIE’S REAL ESTATELICENSE #01968431. THE INFORMATION INTHIS DOCUMENT, INCLUDING, BUTNOTLIMITED TO,SQUARE FOOTAGE AND/OR ACREAGE,HAS BEENPROVIDED BYVARIOUS ACREAGE, HAS BEENINTERNATIONAL PROVIDED BY VARIOUS SOURCES WHICH MAY INCLUDE CONTAINED THE SELLER, PUBLIC RECORDS, THE MULTIPLE LISTING SERVICE OR OTHER SOURCES. BROKER HAS NOT AND WILL SOURCES WHICH MAY INCLUDE THE SELLER, PUBLIC RECORDS, THE MULTIPLE LISTING SERVICE OR OTHER SOURCES. BROKER HAS NOT AND WILL NOT INVESTIGATE OR VERIFY THE ACCURACY OF THIS INFORMATION.
NOT INVESTIGATE OR VERIFY THE ACCURACY OF THIS INFORMATION.
email@example.com | www.lilyliang.com 716 Yarmouth #202, Palos Verdes Estates, CA 90274 BRE# 00837794
A BE ACH HOUSE FOR EV ERY SE A SON Come home to The Villas and Casitas at Terranea, an exclusive collection of whole-ownership second homes on the Palos Verdes Peninsula.
$1,995,000 | 3BR | 2040 SF
$1,845,000 | 2 BR + den | 2347 SF
Discover an ocean-view coastal getaway that’s as carefree as a vacation should be. The Villas and Casitas at Terranea afford privileged access to the best of the award-winning resort — including its world-class dining venues, championship golf course, indulgent spa and serene pool environments — while ownership comes with VIP status, preferred pricing on dining, spa treatments, shopping and golf, a personal Owners Concierge and around-the-clock upkeep. Be among the fortunate few to call Terranea your very own seaside sanctuary, every season of the year. 100 Terranea Way, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275
LDD LONG POINT MANAGEMENT, INC. DRE LICENSE #1774333
For a showing, please call 424-275-5750 TERRANEAREALESTATE.COM
Jenny Morant was named to Wall Street Journal’s Real Trends America’s 2020 Best Real Estate Professionals List. She has been helping buyers and sellers negotiate the best deals in the South Bay for the past 11 years. Contact her today for a home value report. JENNY MORANT 424.409.8976 DRE 01874517 firstname.lastname@example.org IG: @jenny_morant jennymorant.com Compass is a real estate broker licensed by the State of California and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. License Number 01991628. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only and is compiled from sources deemed reliable but has not been veriﬁed. Changes in price, condition, sale or withdrawal may be made without notice. No statement is made as to accuracy of any description. All measurements and square footage are approximate.
Take Me Out A SOUTHBAY WRITER AND SPORTS ENTHUSIAST REFLECTS ON THE THRILL OF ATTENDING A GAME … IN PERSON. Written by Quinn Roberts | Illustrated by Nikki Smith
It was the beginning of the 2020 Major League Baseball season. You looked at the stands and saw cardboard
scoreboard and the fans. They were equally excited. It
clapping. Any noise came out of loudspeakers. Sports
seemed as if everyone was lost in the game, paying at-
fans were left watching or listening to games due to
tention to things they maybe never would have before the
the spread of the COVID-19 virus. No one knew when
pandemic. At times it was as if my head was on a swivel.
person again. Every year I look forward to going to sporting events.
It wasn’t just the fact that I could now go to a game and hear the roar of the crowd or be able to see things I never could have on TV. It was that it was a release from
A certain joy and an unspoken camaraderie exist. You
all of the craziness of the last year and a half. I could feel
know the names of the players and coaches, how the
that same kind of energy from others in the crowd.
team did last year and can carry on fun conversations
However, this feeling doesn’t just exist in profes-
with fans around you that you have never met. You eat
sional sports. It is happening again on Friday nights
hot dogs, drink beer, and chomp on peanuts and sun-
with everyone in town at the big football game. It is
occurring just by going to see your son and his friends
When sports stadiums and arenas began opening at
play Little League Baseball. It’s taking place with col-
limited capacity and then at full capacity, I couldn’t
lege students jumping up and down in the bleachers to
contain myself. A giant smile came across my face at
cheer on their football team.
the thought of what it would be like to go back. With a
Sports has no zip code. It is the glue that holds our
knot in my stomach, I drove through the gates of Angel
society together. It makes us believe in something
Stadium to watch a matchup between the Boston Red
greater than ourselves. Let’s make sure to cherish these
Sox and Los Angeles Angels in July. I was nervous and
moments as much as we can. ■
excited. This was the largest crowd I’d been around
I got to my seat and looked out at the green grass, the
cutouts instead of people. No cheering, no booing, no
they’d be able to cheer on their favorite sports teams in
TERRANEA C A L I F O R N I A
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