La Jolla Light News Nuggets: July 27


Three Girl Scouts go for the gold — and get it!

Three Girl Scouts from La Jolla received their Gold Awards (the highest honor bestowed for a sustainable act of service) during an award ceremony June 17. La Jolla High School students Nora Joyce, Aurora de Tagyos and Maia Hayden were recognized for their projects, designed to “take action” and demonstrate leadership when girls address the root cause of an issue; build and oversee a volunteer team; meet measurable goals; and change people’s beliefs, attitudes, assumptions and behavior.

According to Girl Scout reports, here is a summary of each girl’s projects:

“Backyard Bounty” by Aurora de Tagyos: “After noticing that fruit from trees in my neighborhood was going to waste, I organized and trained a team to harvest excess food from area gardens. We gleaned 1,200 servings of fresh produce to donate to struggling families.”

“Self-Defense for Women” by Maia Hayden: “As a first-degree black belt and lifelong martial arts student, I am passionate about self-defense. I held classes for young women in high school and college, as well as women who have experience with assault, and made a video demonstrating basic moves.”

“Leadership Through Lacrosse” by Nora Joyce: “The Preuss School, which serves students from lower income families, didn’t have middle school or junior varsity lacrosse teams. I set up beginner-level clinics where girls got a head start toward the confidence, strength and can-do spirit playing varsity will bring them.”

Light wins five, First Place reporting awards

The Society of Professional Journalists, San Diego Chapter held its annual awards reception July 19 at the Kona Kai Resort & Spa when La Jolla Light brought home five, First Place reporting awards for the following stories:

  • “La Jolla Cove: Health Risk? Lifeguards, swimmers report illness after contact with waters,” by María José Durán, health category;
  • “Board designates black pioneer’s La Jolla home ‘historical,’ ” by María José Durán, multicultural category;
  • “Know Your Lifeguards: A series on the guys and gals who watch the beaches in La Jolla,” by María José Durán, feature series;
  • “Neighborhood Watch programs become a force in La Jolla,” by Ashley Mackin, non-deadline news category; and
  • “City to spend $11 million on Avenida de la Playa stormwater ‘fiasco’ ” by María José Durán, political/government story.

Opening for a reporter at La Jolla Light

The La Jolla Light has an immediate opening for an experienced reporter. The non-exempt full-time position includes vacation, healthcare and other benefits. The job entails covering civic meetings, crime incidents and taking photos, and posting stories on our website. If interested and qualified, send a query letter and resume to

Warwick’s set to participate in local book fair

The first edition of The San Diego Festival of Books — 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26 at Liberty Station — will feature 40 local authors participating in talks and book signings. La Jolla’s Warwick’s Bookstore will be there providing support and selling the books. “We will have a booth and that will give us an opportunity to present our store and highlight what we do within the community,” said Warwick’s book buyer Adrian Newell to La Jolla Light.

Organized by The San Diego Union-Tribune, the festival goal is to create a space for the reading community in San Diego. “As technology becomes more and more prevalent, it’s great to have something that focuses on the printed word,” Newell said. A speakers’ lineup will be announced at

La Jollan donates books to Rady Children’s Hospital

Bridget Burton donated 50 of her recently published children’s books titled, “Annie Kai Lani Kai Lou: Kauai’s Beloved Pup” (and accompanying CD), to young patients at Rady Children’s Hospital. “I wanted to share this fun, sing-along book with kids who are facing some serious challenges,” said Burton, a resident of La Jolla.

The whimsically illustrated book features the adventuresome Springer Spaniel Annie Kai Lani Kai Lou in a range of activities that all families can experience on the island of Kauai. Annie golfs with a view of the ocean, canoes on the Wailua River, surfs at Poipu Beach, and even watches re-runs of “Jurassic Park” at the Grand Hyatt on Kauai.

Elementary school gets $9,600 Monsanto grant

Torrey Pines Elementary School Foundation (TPESF) received a $9,600 grant from the Monsanto San Diego Research Facility to expand and enrich its garden program to deepen student understanding of the life sciences. Specifically, funds will be used to integrate a garden science curriculum for all grade levels, provide opportunities for individual student experiments, and expand and maintain the current garden infrastructure including raised beds and the greenhouse.

“This grant is critical for the continued growth and success of our Science in the Garden Program. Under the leadership of parent William Jenkins, Ph.D., and science teacher Cathy Isom, our program combines elements of basic science, innovative technology, and critical thinking that are essential to developing the leaders who will be tasked to solve the challenges facing our planet,” said Neha Bahadur, M.D., TPESF past-president.

TPESF previously received a Monsanto Fund site grant in 2016. These initial funds helped to solidify the infrastructure of the Science in the Garden program by supporting teacher training and curriculum development, science supplies including a digital microscope, and a large greenhouse and planting beds.

Christian Fellowship camp welcomes all faiths

Registration is open for La Jolla Christian Fellowship’s summer camp, which is open to participants from any denomination. Dates for high school students July 30-Aug. 4; Middle School Aug. 6-11. Contact Pastor Harry Wilson at for pricing details.

Capricorn Boutique plans to close Aug. 25

Bird Rock’s Capricorn Boutique will close its doors Aug. 25 after 10 years at 5628 La Jolla Blvd. Owners Krissy Heinz and Lisa Ovadia emailed a notice announcing the closure.

“It is with both sadness and joy that we share this news, that after nearly 11 wonderful years, we are ready to begin the next chapter of our lives. We cannot express the gratitude we have for the years of continued love and support you have shown us. Many of you are like family to us and we will cherish the bonds we have formed over the years. There are so many special memories that will remain in our hearts always,” it reads.

Three female professors sue Salk Institute for gender discrimination

The three sole female full professors at Salk Institute, the highest possible rank for faculty members, are suing the research center in two different lawsuits for allegedly giving preference to men in pay, promotion, grant funding and leadership positions.

Salk biologists Vicki Lundblad and Katherine Jones announced their legal action earlier this month. As a response, Salk officials rejected the claims and asserted that both scientists trailed their peers in their work. Then, Beverly Emerson, a prominent biochemist who studies how genes contribute to disease, filed a second lawsuit against what she describes as an “antiquated boys’ club.”

Nobel Laureate Elisabeth Blackburn, president of the Salk Institute, wrote in a statement: “I would never preside over an organization that in any way condones, openly or otherwise, the marginalization of women scientists.”

UCSD granted $5.8 million for cancer research

The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) awarded $5.8 million to fund UC San Diego’s stem cell research to develop a new variation of cancer immunotherapy.

UCSD’s Moore’s Cancer Center physicians led by Ezra Cohen will try to adapt CAR T-cell therapy, pioneered by Dr. Carl June at the University of Pennsylvania, to fight cancer’s stem cells. The treatment has been used against blood cancers, with a number of patients experiencing dramatic and long-lasting remissions.

CIRM was created in 2004 by California voters with $3 billion in funding to accelerate stem cell research and treatments.