Kudos to local people making headlines


Golf tourney lauds leaders

More than 150 golfers and guests helped raise $125,000 at the 12th Annual Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute Invitational Dinner and Golf Tournament Oct. 4-5. The golf outing benefited Scripps Whittier’s clinical research center and Project Dulce, a diabetes care and education program that addresses the specific needs of underserved, ethnically diverse populations.

In addition, Scripps Whittier recognized leaders in diabetes care during the tournament. Jeffrey Sandler, MD, medical director at Scripps Whittier, was awarded the Jessop Award for his exemplary citizenship and significant contribution to the fight against diabetes.

Also honored was Francine Kaufman, MD, chief medical officer and vice president of Medtronic Diabetes. She received the Pacesetter Award as acknowledgment of her company’s technological strides in diabetes management, which improves patients’ lives.

Lead sponsors for the tournament included legendary golfer Lee Elder, the Melisa Reasner McGuire Memorial Donor Advised Fund at the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation, Charles and Gerry Scribner, and Betty Warner and family.

Chef opens museum cafe

Giuseppe Ciuffa, owner of Giuseppe Restaurants and Fine Catering in La Jolla recently opened Sculpture Court Cafe by Giuseppe at the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park.

The European-style cafe serves classic Mediterranean bites like artisan pizzas, Panini, artisanal cheese plate, and a cured salumi board using all-natural meats and poultry, and organic produce. Guests are encouraged to take their time, sip espresso drinks or wine, beers and spirits. There is an extensive dessert menu.

“I wanted to open a cafe that reminded me of home,” Ciuffa said.

Born in Ferrara, Italy, Ciuffa said inherited an appreciation for fine food. After spending years in his family kitchen learning the trade, Ciuffa brought his expertise to San Diego where he managed restaurants downtown, co-owned the La Jolla-based La Taverna trattoria, and transformed the La Jolla bakery, Come On In! into a thriving chain of bistros. In 2001, Ciuffa created Giuseppe Restaurants and Fine Catering, opening the Museum Cafe in the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La Jolla. For more information, call (619) 702-6373 or visit

Attorney earns award

David Casey Jr., a partner with plaintiffs’ law firm Casey Gerry, received a Lifetime Legal Achievement Award at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills. Casey joined the ranks of fellow award recipients actor Dennis Quaid, Joan Claybrook and the late Wally Marks, Jr. to be honored by Consumer Watchdog, a California-based, nonprofit education and advocacy organization.

According to its president, Jamie Court, the award honors Americans who live by a code of “Courage Not Compromise” in their pursuit of justice.

Kiwanis honors Ballantyne

Peter Ballantyne of Clairemont was awarded the 2009 Robert Metz Award by the Torrey Pines Kiwanis Club. The award honors a volunteer who uses his or her talents with exceptional spirit and attitude to produce the annual La Jolla Festival of the Arts.

“Peter gave an extraordinary amount of his time and expertise to the festival,” said chairman Ronn Rohe, “and he fully involved his sons, Liam and Lloyd, instilling in them the importance, satisfaction, and fun of community service.”

Ballantyne, a professional R&B musician, has been associated with the festival for nearly 10 years in entertainment and site management functions, and has served as president of the Torrey Pines Kiwanis Club.

He is also the acting director of the San Diego Adaptive Sports Foundation, a member of the American Water Ski Association, and he coaches junior high school baseball. Ballantyne’s wife, Angela, is a pediatric research neuropsychologist at UCSD.