Biz Buzz: Shelley Malcolm is Pismo’s Citizen of the Year

Calling her “the pearl of Shell Beach,” Pismo Beach Mayor Shelly Higginbotham announced Shelley Malcolm as the Pismo Beach Chamber of Commerce’s Citizen of the Year at the chamber’s annual installation dinner.

Malcolm, along with husband, Doug, and longtime friends Jim Murphy and Garin Murphy-Sinclair, formed a partnership and bought the La Perla del Mar in Shell Beach a few of years ago, saving it from the wrecking ball. It has hosted weddings, art shows, yoga classes and acting workshops.

Shelley Malcolm has also designed sets for productions at the Clark Center for the Performing Arts in Arroyo Grande and the Performing Arts Center at Cal Poly.

“It has been an honor working on this project,” she said of La Perla del Mar. “People need a place of hope and a place to celebrate, and that’s what we’re doing.”

Also honored at the chamber’s installation and awards dinner Thursday were Gary Stone of Mackey and Mackey Insurance Inc., as Ambassador of the Year; Roger Tomasko of Tomasko’s Salt Water Taffy as Business of the Year; and Narlene Carter-Keenan, of Keller Williams Realty, as Volunteer of the Year.

In addition, outgoing chamber board President Suellen Iness honored board member Tony Wells as Director of the Year.

“This was a dynamic year. We went through so many changes,” Wells said, referring to the resignation of the chamber’s former CEO and its hiring of current CEO Peter Candela. “But we did the best Taste of Pismo we ever did, the best golf tournament.”

Iness also recognized Joanne Currie, of Splash Cafe, for her longtime contributions to the chamber, and Les Davidson, of Just Cruzin’ Productions, promoter of the Classic Car Show in Pismo Beach over Father’s Day weekend.

Davidson donated $15,000 to the city last summer so the Pismo Beach Police Department could bring a police dog back to the department.

— Cynthia Lambert