Santa Monica, a Lifelong Learning Community

Lifelong Learning Community News - DECEMBER 2009

Rod Gould hired as New City Manager
Santa Monica City Council has hired a new City Manager: Rod Gould. I read in the local press that Mr. Gould served as a VISTA volunteer for a year and that he holds multiple degrees including a Master’s in Education.  I take this as a hopeful sign that he personally values education and lifelong learning for everyone and that he will be able to aid our City Council and our community in continuing our strides to become a model lifelong learning community. For more information on Mr. Gould, please read
Goodbye and thank you to City Manager Lamont Ewell who is retiring this month (although staying on as Interim into January). Mr. Ewell is working hard and up to the last minute on two different and very significant projects: to bring light rail to Santa Monica and to bring a new Broad museum to Santa Monica. (For more information on the possibility of a museum housing the Broad’s contemporary art collection here in our Civic Center, please go to
Among other things good for our lifelong learning community, including the Santa Monica College/Big Blue Bus partnership and plans for a new branch library in the Pico neighborhood, Mr. Ewell’s tenure as City Manager has been noteworthy for markedly improved relationships and partnerships with both the school district and Santa Monica College. From a lifelong learning community vantage, these are essential relationships and partnerships. Thank you, Lamont for being such a good partner with our schools and college. Enjoy your retirement.
New College Board Officers
In other news, my term as Chair of the Santa Monica College Board of Trustees has ended. David Finkel is the new Chair and Andrew Walzer is Vice Chair. Congratulations to you both!
New School Board Officers
Barry Snell has been elected President of the Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District and Kelly Pye is Vice-President. Congratulations to you too and thanks to School Board Member Ralph Mechur who has completed his term as President.
The Worst is NOT Behind Us Yet...
2009 was a very challenging year for public education but 2010 is looking to be even worse as the State continues to reel from budget crisis to budget crisis. Our local Boards and schools will need the full support of their communities – internal and external - to preserve the educational programs and quality we expect and deserve. Good luck to the newly elected officers and thank you for your willingness to accept a leadership role during such a difficult fiscal period.
In other news:
Melody Hanatani, staff reporter for the Santa Monica Daily Press for the past three years, is moving on to new challenges. Nick Taborek will be taking over Melody’s beats. Good luck Melody (and good luck Nick!). Thank you for keeping us all so well informed.
Santa Monica College is No. 1 in Transfers
For the 19th consecutive year (!!!!), SMC is the number 1 transfer institution in California for students entering the UC system.  SMC also transfers the most students to the combined UC-Cal State University systems, is number 1 in the transfer of African American students to the UC system, and number 1 in transfers to USC with 173 students. About 15 SMC students transfer to Columbia University in New York every year.  Five hundred and sixteen SMC students transferred to UCLA in 08-09.
Santa Monica History Museum under construction
The Santa Monica Historical Society has announced a name change for their new museum: Santa Monica History Museum.  A new site for the museum is now under construction on the east side of the main public library. Please consider making a financial contribution to assist in the building of this new lifelong learning facility. For more information about the Historical Society and/or to make a donation, please go to
The Land Use and Circulation Element (LUCE) Draft is now available and it affirms education, lifelong learning, active living, and the arts as community values and acknowledges that facilities, planning, transportation, and zoning impact them. I am very pleased to see the inclusion of these “soft” quality of life issues in the planning element.  The draft LUCE is online at  Section 3.5 Community Enrichment: Integrating the Plan includes lifelong learning.
Four Stars for Santa Monica Public Library
Santa Monica Public Library earned four stars from Library Journal’s national rating of 7,268 public libraries. Our library was identified as one of 258 star libraries based on the level of service provided and visits, circulation, program attendance, and public Internet computer use. Congratulations! For more information about the library, its programs, and services visit your local branch or
Richard Bloom appointed to Coastal Commission
Congratulations to councilmember Richard Bloom on his appointment to the Coastal Commission. For more information, please go to
Your Name on a Santa Monica Pier Plaque
Commemorative 5"x2" bronze plaques will be installed at the west end of the Santa Monica Pier. To reserve a plaque in your name and to help the pier, prior to December 31, please go to
Mid-City Area Neighborhood Group Forming
Residents in the Mid-City area of Santa Monica are working to form a new neighborhood organization.  Fifty paying members are needed to begin the process of becoming an incorporated Neighborhood Organization. If you live between Wilshire and Colorado, Centinela and 14th, please consider becoming a member. Dues are $10 per person or $15 per family. For more information, please contact long time resident Gregg Heacock at
UCLA Family Commons Opens
“a child grows, a parent discovers, a family flourishes, a community thrives”
UCLA is opening a new center, UCLA Family Commons, where “you’ll find a welcoming environment filled with classes, events and One to One Coaching on the topics that matter to you... Everything we offer is grounded in the latest scientific research on healthy child development, from UCLA and around the world.... Connect with others who are excited about creating healthy, engaged lives.”
            Saturday, December 12, 9am – 6pm
            UCLA Family Commons Opening
            1221 2nd Street
            Free preview events and programs December 12 – 23; then fee based.
For more information including hours and class schedules, please visit
Tuesday, December 15 & Wednesday, December 16, 11am- 9pm
Santa Monica College Holiday Student Art Sale

SMC Performing Arts Center, Pete & Susan Barrett Art Gallery
11th & Santa Monica Boulevard
Free with free parking
Help support the art programs at Santa Monica College and pick up some beautiful holiday gifts – blown glass, ceramics, jewelry and more – at the 32nd Annual Holiday Student Art Sale!
Wednesday, December 16, 4:30pm
Santa Monica Education Cup

Santa Monica College, Corsair Field
1900 Pico Boulevard

Soccer players from Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District and Santa Monica College have organized this first ever soccer game. Coed teams with players from the respective boards and staff will be playing. Other community members (like me) will be watching! Come on out and cheer on these soccer-playing educators.
The Living Room.... a place for adults
The Living Room is a project of the Lifelong Learning Older Adult Task Force and is designed to help adults rediscover the library as their community center, a place to connect, get active, and learn.  The Living Room promotes the idea that adults can meet for lifelong learning and social connections in the comfort of the community library.
            Thursday, December 17, 11am
            Lyric Chorus Broadway and Holiday Sing

            Santa Monica Public Library, Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium
            601 Santa Monica Boulevard
            “If you like singing, please join us.”
The Lyric Chorus, directed by Bill Elliott since January 1986, was founded in the 1940’s as Santa Monica Lyric Chorus.  The three-part women’s chorus became part of Emeritus College when Santa Monica College began its Emeritus College. 
This is a free concert and all ages are welcome.  Space is limited and on a first arrival basis.  This is an event of: The Living Room …a place for adults.  For more information, visit or contact the Santa Monica Public Library at (310) 458-8600.
New City Master Calendar: The City of Santa Monica now has a master calendar, sortable by locations, event type, and age group. It includes a LOT of information. Please bookmark it and use it! You can get to it from the City home page, upper right hand corner, or just go to


To receive weekly emails from the City of Santa Monica highlighting upcoming arts events, please subscribe to the Santa Monica Arts Palette at
At this same site, you can also sign up to receive emails about events at the Annenberg Community Beach House, at Miles Play House, at the Civic Auditorium, and Festivals. Please don’t rely on me. Sign up!
 To receive emails about upcoming events at the Santa Monica Pier, please subscribe at


Santa Monica College ( the Santa Monica Public Library, (,) and The Broad Stage, ( are all in full swing now with many, many engaging events scheduled. Please check out their websites for more information.  

Lifelong Learning Community Calendars & Events at and Lifelong Learning Community Links provide additional useful websites including local theatrical companies – listed under “Local Museums and Special Venues.” To stay current on upcoming events and to keep abreast of these wonderful local organizations, please bookmark Links at
That’s all for now.
Happy Holidays!
Cheers, and Onward,
Louise Jaffe

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