May 30, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Community Briefs:

During “National Volunteer Week,” ending April 28, Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital honored dozens of its adult volunteers with a luncheon at the Sheraton Delfina. Santa Monica resident Jette Simmons was the top honoree, with more than 74,000 hours of service. Two other Westside residents, Kuljit Marwah of Malibu and Ronald Belanger of Venice, were honored for 27,000 and 19,000 hours of service, respectively. Nancy Howell of Pacific Palisades was honored for reaching the 25-year milestone, while Connie Casillas and Virginia Hansis of Santa Monica and June Obler of Brentwood were recognized for 20 years of service.

The luncheon also paid special attention to four exceptional ladies – volunteers Howell, Lois Krieger, Monique Lasky and Agnes Raeder – who manage the Gift Shop, Surgery Waiting Area, Information Desk and the Ambassador Program.

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The Santa Monica Fire Department recently bought six state-of-the-art cardiac monitors, which will allow paramedics to determine if someone is having a “STEMI” (ST elevation myocardial infarction) heart attack.

A STEMI heart attack can often be treated successfully, but time is of crucial importance. With the new equipment, paramedics can quickly determine if a patient is having a STEMI heart attack then alert the hospital so staff can be ready for the patient. For Santa Monicans, the closest SRC (STEMI Receiving Center) is located at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center.

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The Santa Monica LEED-certified home of LivingHome CEO Steve Glenn was the launching pad of Healthy Child Healthy World, formerly known as Children’s Health Environmental Coalition.

Healthy Child’s mission is to protect children from environmental illnesses, and the April 26 launch focused on ways to make homes environmentally safe for children. Healthy Child encourages “5 Easy Steps” for better health, which include organic food, non-toxic ways to get rid of pests and using natural products to clean the home.

“It starts in the home,” says Christopher Gavigan, CEO/Executive Director of Healthy Child. “Many of us are unaware of the carcinogens, neurotoxins and air pollutants that we bring into our homes on a daily basis. Healthy Child Healthy World can help us understand the easy and cost-effective solutions that make a difference.”

Additional information can be found at

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and General Services Administration (GSA) will not be expanding the FBI’s headquarters at the often-gridlocked corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Veteran Avenue in Westwood.

“This is a victory for residents on the Westside who are choked by traffic gridlock,” said Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl. “I would like to thank the members of the Coalition for Veterans Land for their leadership on this issue. This is sacred land that should only be used for veterans services, not for overdevelopment. I encourage GSA to locate the new FBI facility in downtown Los Angeles where we have a hub of local, state and federal government offices.”

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Pregnant teens along with at-risk foster girls were treated to a day of luxury courtesy of Santa Monica-based New Visions Foundation and Venice-based Elique Skin and Spa. The young women were taught about holistic health and nutrition, had their make-up and hair done and were given massages, reflexology and yoga classes.

“I wanted to provide the girls with an understanding that what they put into and onto their bodies is very important to their health and doesn’t have to cost a lot,” says Elisha Reverby, owner of Elique. “The custom products I make at my spa incorporate the philosophy that the fewer the ingredients and the higher the quality of the ingredients, the better it is for you. My hope is that these girls use this information as a base to inform themselves about health and beauty choices they can make for life.”

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Los Angeles native Marcy Wade has been named vice president of human resources at SMC. “We’re very excited that Ms. Wade will be leading the area that oversees SMC’s biggest asset – its people,” said SMC President Dr. Chui L. Tsang. “She impressed the hiring committee with her experience and ability to communicate with employees.”

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Venice Arts has received a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its new Art Mentoring program. In addition, the organization has been granted a $100,000, two-year grant from the Weingart Foundation for the same program. “We are so thrilled to have received this support from the Weingart Foundation,” says Joanne Kim, Lead Photographer at Venice Arts. “As an artist-mentor, I’ve seen youth grow and have a greater ability to tell their stories and express their feelings, thoughts and ideas creatively and to learn to value themselves and their own lives through working with our mentors.”

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The Special Collections of the Research Library at the Getty Research Institute has recently acquired the archives of world-renowned architect Pierre Koenig. Koenig participated in Arts & Architecture magazine’s Case Study House Program – which took place from the 1940s through the 1960s – where architects built modern homes in the Los Angeles area. He was one of the foremost mid-century architects in the world.

The Getty has also acquired the archives of architectural photographer Julius Shulman, now approximately 97 years old, who also participated in the Case Study House Program. For decades, Shulman chronicled modern architecture throughout Los Angeles, and beyond. Last summer, Shulman came to SMC and shot the school’s Madison Project while still under construction.

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Councilmember Kevin McKeown was elected Southern California vice chair of the Democratic Party’s Irish-American Caucus at the California State Democratic Convention held the last weekend of April in San Diego. McKeown, a member of the Progressive Democrats of America, said, “We were progressive political paramedics on a medical mission, to help the Democratic Party find its spine.”

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