Bits 'n' Pieces

Aquarium Head Schubel Announces Retirement

Aquarium of the Pacific President and CEO Dr. Jerry Schubel has announced his intention to retire in 2020. Dr. Schubel will remain in his current role while the aquarium’s board of directors conducts a search for his replacement.

Dr. Schubel joined the Aquarium in 2002, having previously served as president and CEO of the New England Aquarium, dean of Stony Brook University’s Marine Science Research Center, and associate director of Johns Hopkins University’s Chesapeake Bay Institute.

Under his leadership the aquarium has embraced its role as a science communicator, creating exhibits and programs to engage and inspire people in helping address global environmental issues such as climate change and biodiversity loss. Dr. Schubel also prioritized using the visual and performing arts as well as new technologies to connect the public with nature, the environmental challenges we face, and opportunities for creating a more sustainable future.

During his tenure at the Aquarium of the Pacific, Dr. Schubel led the development and implementation of the campus master plan that culminated with the opening of the Pacific Visions wing, the aquarium’s largest expansion, in May 2019.

Dr. Schubel holds a Ph.D. in oceanography from Johns Hopkins University. He received an honorary doctorate from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy in 1998.

The nonprofit Aquarium of the Pacific is a community gathering place where diverse cultures and the arts are celebrated and where important challenges facing our planet are explored by scientists, policymakers, and stakeholders in search of sustainable solutions. The Aquarium is dedicated to conserving and building nature and nature’s services by building the interactions between and among peoples.

Foundation Distributes $100,000 in Grants

The Long Beach Community Foundation will award a total of $100,000 in grants to nine local nonprofits at a grant reception on Monday, Sept. 16. Wells Fargo supported LBCF’s grantmaking through a $20,000 contribution that was used to specifically fund programs focusing on the housing and homelessness crisis in Long Beach. Other issues addressed through LBCF’s $100,000 grantmaking include food insecurity, education, poverty and children’s health.

“We are proud to fund such worthy nonprofit organizations who are making a difference in our community,” said LBCF Board Chair Gary DeLong. “Wells Fargo’s recognition of our strategic grantmaking and strong reputation for impact in the community is the frosting on the cake. Partnerships like this enable us to stretch our philanthropic dollars further and ultimately effect even greater positive change.”

The nonprofit recipients of LBCF’s grants include: Interval House, Conservation Corps of Long Beach, Long Beach Community Table, Christian Outreach in Action, the Children’s Dental Health Clinic, the Catalina Island Foundation, Long Beach Blast, Precious Lamb Preschool and the YMCA of Long Beach.

More than $40,000 of these grants comes from LBCF’s Community Impact Fund – a fund created in 1997 to provide financial resources to local nonprofits that address issues facing Long Beach as they evolve. The fund allows flexibility to pivot its granting focus as the community’s needs change. The fund is then used to make grants to the most effective nonprofits in Long Beach to address the issues.

“Donations have come from a variety of sources to make these grants possible-- including major corporations, bequests, LBCF Board members, and hundreds of community members that entrust us to keep our finger on the pulse of the community,” said LBCF President & CEO Marcelle Epley. “As the Long Beach Community Foundation grows in size and exposure, so too does our ability to grant in our community. This grant reception will be a celebration of the various stakeholders and donors who have entrusted their local Community Foundation to address critical community issues.”

Donations to the LBCF Community Impact Fund can be made at

Milana’s Brooklyn Squares Officially Opens

Milana’s celebrated the official grand opening of its second store Milana’s Brooklyn Squares on Monday, Sept. 9. Adriel and Ester Fasci first opened Milana’s New York Pizzeria at The Streets in Downtown on Feb. 19, 2010. The new Milana’s Brooklyn Squares is located at 2000 Ximeno Ave.

Milana’s encourages guests to “Eat like a New Yorker” and they take great care in getting the ingredients just right. The sauces, marinara and meatballs are all house made and of the highest quality, premium tomatoes and meats. All ingredients for the day are sliced and prepped for that day only. Milana’s believes in making their food flavor ready. This dedication to preparation has made Milana’s New York Pizzeria and Milana’s Brooklyn Squares the “Best Pizza in Long Beach” as proclaimed by Yelp reviewers.

Eric Ramos New Chief Medical Officer

MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center has named Eric Ramos, M.D., FAAFP, as its new chief medical officer. Dr. Ramos is in a unique position to help navigate Long Beach Medical Center through the shifting health care landscape, and in turn help shift culture, since he has been a registered nurse, a physician and an administrator.

Dr. Ramos began his medical career as a registered nurse and now has more than 35 years of experience as a physician. In his role at Long Beach Medical Center, Dr. Ramos will support the peer review process, administration of the Vanderbilt model roll out in partnership with the medical staff (a program that helps medical centers and physician groups partner to make healthcare kinder, safer and more reliable), and work with the chief of staff on medical staff initiatives.

Most recently, Dr. Ramos was division chief medical officer for HCA Healthcare Far West Division with responsibility for leading the eight division hospitals’ Clinical Excellence programs and improving all publicly reported metrics. In this role, he oversaw regulatory compliance, the Medical Staff Office, emergency preparedness and quality initiatives.

Dr. Ramos received his medical degree from the University of Southern California. He completed his family practice residency program and residency graduate certificate from the University of California, Davis.

City, POA Reach Tentative Labor Agreement

The City of Long Beach has reached a tentative three-year agreement with the Police Officers Association (POA) that ensures the city remains competitive with other agencies seeking quality police officers.

The agreement includes a phased-in approach for structural wage increases that are in part offset by having employees pay a portion of the city’s pension costs. The new cost-sharing provision will help the city mitigate the rising costs of pensions.

The agreement also provides key benefit enhancements such as a new paid parental leave program, one additional holiday and a modification of holiday and vacation accruals that enhance employees’ ability to balance work and personal lives.

The tentative agreement addresses issues of recruitment and retention of police officers, incentivizes professional growth in law enforcement and continues to raise the level of competence of law enforcement officers.

The POA membership voted overwhelmingly to ratify the tentative agreement during the month of August. The agreement will now go before the City Council for discussion and consideration on Sept. 17.

The POA represents approximately 875 City of Long Beach sworn employees.

Leadership Long Beach Searching for New Director

Leadership Long Beach (LLB), the city’s leading principled leadership and community engagement organization, is conducting a search for a new executive director following the upcoming departure of its current executive director, Jeff Williams.

Williams will transition from his role upon the employment of his replacement. He served LLB for 10 years and successfully led the organization through its 30th Anniversary celebration events.

The LLB board of directors and search committee will be looking for a strong, innovative leader who is experienced in carrying out a strategic growth plan, able to strengthen existing key programs and initiatives, possesses financial acumen,and has knowledge of the technical aspects of managing a nonprofit.

 Interested applicants should visit for additional job description and requirements and will need to submit a cover letter, resume, contact information for three references, as well as the answers to the supplemental questions listed on the site. The deadline for submission is Sept. 17

Carpenter Union Donates Food to LBCC Students

The Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) received a donation of 120 cases of food on Aug. 30, from the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters (SRCC). The food was collected for the college’s “Viking Vault” food pantries and will be distributed to Long Beach City College students in need.

This is the second year in a row that SRCC has collected food specifically for LBCC students. According to Frank Zambrano, of the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters, many of the union members have children who struggle through the college system which made it very relatable for the employees.

“We are aware that with today’s students, one in five students go hungry,” Zambrano said. “We are very aware of the situation.”

The food drive was a one-day collaborative effort of the Postal Service-Cal Fed and the SRCC who donated non-perishable can and dry goods.

For more information on donating non-perishable food items, toiletries or financial assistance, contact the LBCC Foundation at (562) 938-4134 or Student Health Services at (562) 938-3032.

City Hosts Second Annual Ranchos Walk

The City of Long Beach invites the community to experience Long Beach by foot at its second annual Ranchos Walk, Saturday, Sept. 28. Beginning at 8 a.m., participants will take a walk through history as they follow a trail that links Rancho Los Alamitos and Rancho Los Cerritos. The two ranchos, which once comprised all of present-day Long Beach, are now city-owned museums operated by nonprofit foundations.

This 9.4-mile scenic walk begins at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) and winds through Reservoir Hill, Hilltop Park in Signal Hill and Longview Point at Willow Springs Park before concluding at Rancho Los Cerritos. In addition to the full 9.4-mile urban hike, walkers have the option of abbreviated 6-mile and 3.5-mile routes.

Rancho Los Alamitos will help welcome guests at CSULB. The Ranchos Walk will conclude at Rancho Los Cerritos with a festival celebrating the Rancho’s 175th anniversary. Participants will be able to enjoy live music from the Long Beach Poly High School Jazz Combo and The Bernie Pearl Blues Band, kids’ activities, a “Brewery Knolls” beer garden featuring Liberation Brewing Co., food vendors, a 175th birthday cake-cutting ceremony and self-guided tours of the historic adobe building.

The city’s Office of Sustainability, Department of Public Works and Department of Health and Human Services partnered with Walk Long Beach, Rancho Los Cerritos and Rancho Los Alamitos to host this free urban hike. The event coincides with California Pedestrian Safety Month.

Participation in the event is free, and online registration is available at For an audio tour with navigation instructions and historical information along the route, participants can download the izi.Travel app, available on the App Store or on Google Play.

Richard Daskam Named Broker at Keller Williams

Keller Williams Coastal Properties recently welcomed an industry expert to the company’s leadership team.

In May, Richard Daskam took over as the broker of record for the Long Beach-based real estate office. With almost 30 years of experience, Daskam has worked at various local franchises including Century 21, Coldwell Banker, Prudential and independent brokerages.

In his new role, he will be the responsible broker in charge of compliance, training and sales for over 180 agents and broker-associates affiliated with Keller Williams Coastal Properties.

“As someone tasked with coaching top agents and attracting new ones to the company, I know I have a great story to tell,” said Daskam. “Keller Williams Coastal Properties has value propositions that no other brokerage firm has, including our unique mentorship program for new and returning real estate agents, KW Concierge program, our focus on helping agents grow their business, and our compensation packages that are second to none. I’m excited to spread the word and let like-minded agents searching for their professional home know what a great place this is to be.”

He is currently serving on Pacific West Association of Realtors – Professional Standards Committee. Daskam was honored as Best Real Estate Agent in 2019 by the Beachcomber newspaper, his 14th time receiving this honor.


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