La Jolla News Nuggets: Stairway repainting; $1 million for streetscape project; Village walking tours; more

The recent handiwork of La Jollan Joseph McGoldrick can be seen at Windansea Beach.
The recent handiwork of La Jollan Joseph McGoldrick can be seen at Windansea Beach.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

News and events briefs


Project to repaint stairway railings at Windansea is expanded and completed

Just in time for the busy summer season, La Jolla volunteer Joseph McGoldrick has completed a project to resurface and repaint the railings at all five beach access stairways at Windansea Beach.

Though he originally planned to repaint the stairway handrails at the end of Nautilus and Westbourne streets, he recently reported to the city of San Diego that he had expanded the project to include the stairways at the end of Kolmar Street, Palomar Avenue and Camino de la Costa.

“I had a personal goal to finish my volunteer project prior to the end of June so it would be completed prior to the July Fourth holiday,” he told the city. “I am pleased to tell you it was completed as of June 29.”

After repainting the railings of the beach access staircase at the end of Nautilus Street in Windansea without San Diego’s consent earlier this year, McGoldrick became a recognized city volunteer so he can carry out other projects.

As part of his work, McGoldrick sanded and scraped off the existing paint and recoated the handrails using commercial paint. He also cut and removed overgrown vegetation alongside some of the stairs, and the city disposed of it.

“I found the overgrowth at various sites to be hazardous to beach-goers, for they could easily trip on their descent” to the beach, McGoldrick said. He suggested the city review the condition of the vegetation annually.

“This has been a very positive personal endeavor … [and] local residents and visitors alike profusely expressed their deep appreciation for the work completed during my entire project,” McGoldrick said.

Community Foundation receives $1 million from state for streetscape project

A rendering shows the final design plan for the first phase of the La Jolla Community Foundation streetscape project.
(Photo by Elisabeth Frausto)

The La Jolla Community Foundation recently received a $1 million grant from the state to help fund its Village streetscape project.

The board had applied for a $3 million grant.

“The state ran into a budget deficit, so I figured getting $1 million out of the $3 million we asked for is pretty good,” foundation board member Jack McGrory told the La Jolla Light.

The state grant will be added to $1.6 million already raised through private donations. The board has raised and spent $400,000 on design, engineering and planning work, McGrory said.

The project is expected to cost a total of $6.5 million, though McGrory said final numbers are expected in coming weeks.

The plan would first renovate Girard Avenue between Silverado and Prospect streets, adding curb extensions, paving, landscaping and lighting. McGrory said he hopes that work will begin next year.

To learn more about the streetscape plan or for donation information, go to

Merchants association partners with SoDiego for Village walking tours

The La Jolla Village Merchants Association has entered a partnership with SoDiego for a recently launched walking tour of The Village.

The event, once known as the weekly “Cove and Cocktails” guided walking tour — which featured stops at The Cove followed by a walk to area landmarks, arts institutions and restaurants — is now called the “Sip, Savor and Sea” walking tour and starts at 11 a.m. daily. The three-hour tour features historical highlights and samples from area restaurants and costs $120.

Through the collaboration with SoDiego, the merchants association will help with marketing and encourage direct booking of tours, and SoDiego will adapt the script that guides use to promote and showcase shopping, arts and dining in The Village, according to LJVMA.

To learn more, visit

New drug pairing shows promise against pancreatic cancer, UCSD study says

UC San Diego researchers say they have found a combination of drugs that outperformed other treatments for pancreatic cancer in human cells and mice and are now urging a clinical trial.

Pancreatic cancer is especially prone to drug resistance, and most drugs work for only a short time before the cancer finds a way around them.

To try to beat that, researchers at the UCSD School of Medicine tested a novel combination of drugs. Their findings, published June 28 in Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, indicate the combination is dramatically more effective and less prone to resistance. The authors now recommend that the combination be tested in clinical trials for human cancer patients.

The study was the first to confirm that human pancreatic cells treated with MRTX1133 (from Mirati Therapeutics) develop drug resistance but that the resistance could be overcome by combining the drug with the FDA-approved Afatinib.

The combination of MRTX1133 and Afatinib also reduced the number of surviving cancer cells more than MRTX1133 alone.

The researchers also tested the drugs in a live mouse model of pancreatic cancer and found that mice treated with both drugs survived significantly longer than those treated with either drug alone.

“The synergy between MRTX1133 and Afatinib was remarkable, and we strongly encourage the clinical testing of this drug combination for patients with pancreatic cancer,” said co-senior author Dr. Andrew Lowy, a professor in the Department of Surgery and chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology at the UCSD School of Medicine and clinical director for cancer surgery at UCSD’s Moores Cancer Center.

Stella Maris Academy students donate to La Jolla/Riford Library

Students in Betsy Whitten's first-grade class at Stella Maris Academy donated $193 to the La Jolla/Riford Library.
(Provided by Betsy Whitten)

A first-grade class at Stella Maris Academy in La Jolla recently raised $193 and donated it to the La Jolla/Riford Library.

The project was part of “Community Economics,” during which the students opened “The First Grade Emporium,” teacher Betsy Whitten said.

Each student was given a $5 investment from Whitten and decided to handcraft or bake a product or buy and resell an item at the one-day emporium.

All Stella Maris classes shopped at the emporium.

The investments were repaid and profits totaled at the end, with half the money donated to the library.

Nobel laureate Harry Markowitz, UCSD professor who revolutionized investing, dies at 95

Harry Markowitz shared the 1990 Nobel Prize in economics for his work on portfolio theory.
Harry Markowitz shared the 1990 Nobel Prize in economics for his work on portfolio theory. He died recently in San Diego at age 95.
(Zuma Press Inc. / Alamy Stock P)

Harry Markowitz, a renowned scholar who was awarded the Nobel Prize for research that helped revolutionize investing and who became one of UC San Diego’s most revered faculty members, died June 22. He was 95.

Markowitz died of pneumonia and sepsis at a San Diego hospital, Mary McDonald, a longtime assistant to Markowitz, told The New York Times.

Markowitz was best known as the father of modern portfolio theory, which revolutionized the management of financial portfolios. He established through empirical research why investors should diversify investments in the stock market using combinations of assets instead of individual securities.

The framework he helped pioneer showed the correlation between low-risk investments and low returns and high-risk investments and higher returns. The theory earned him the 1990 Nobel in economics alongside William Sharpe and Merton Miller.

Markowitz taught at UCSD’s Rady School of Management as an adjunct professor from 2007 to 2019. — The San Diego Union-Tribune

SDPD to present public meeting on body-worn camera technology

The San Diego Police Department will hold a public meeting on Thursday, July 6, to share information about body-worn cameras as part of technology evaluation required under the city’s new surveillance ordinance.

The meeting will be from 6 to 8 p.m. at Anchor Church in the Ridgeview/Webster community and will be livestreamed to eight other locations across the city. The location closest to La Jolla is the Pacific Beach/Taylor Library at 4275 Cass St. For other locations, visit

The department will post a recording of the presentation at and accept online public comments until 5 p.m. Thursday, July 13.

Under the new law, city departments are required to disclose their surveillance technologies and put together reports outlining how those tools are used and their impact on communities.

That information then makes its way to the newly formed Privacy Advisory Board — a volunteer panel charged with vetting the city’s technologies — and subsequently to the City Council.

The department’s proposal to use cameras with integrated license plate readers on 500 streetlights citywide was the first tool to go through the new protocol. The privacy board voted against it June 22. — The San Diego Union-Tribune and La Jolla Light

— Compiled by La Jolla Light staff