These are some shots from our 2015 Moonlight on the Marsh Celebration.
Dr. Shelley Luce
Dr. Shelley Luce is Executive Director of Environment Now, a family foundation based in Los Angeles and focused on preserving and restoring aquatic and forest ecosystems in California and Baja California. She directs the Foundation’s strategy and programs, and initiates innovative projects to solve complex environmental problems. Prior to coming to Environment Now, she served as Executive Director for both the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission and The Bay Foundation. She also previously worked at Heal the Bay as Science and Policy Director.
Shelley is a surfer, swimmer, hiker and lover of the great outdoors. She is also a scientist and is endlessly fascinated by the plants and animals of our ocean, rivers, wetlands, forests and deserts. Shelley is married to a fellow surfer and wildlife biologist, and has two incessantly curious kids who know more about California water issues than most adults. Shelley’s work in California is incredibly satisfying because of the great need, and the potential to make progress on environmental issues that affect her own children as well as millions more people, in this state and beyond.
Shelley has a Doctorate of Environmental Science and Engineering from UCLA (2003) and a B.S. in Biology from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Dr. Luce is chair of the Southern California Wetlands Recovery Project Science Advisory Panel, a Board member of The Bay Foundation, and provides presentations and expert testimony on environmental issues to expert and lay audiences alike.
Susan is the owner of the Channel Road Inn in Santa Monica and the Inn at Playa del Rey, which overlooks the Ballona Ecological Reserve. She is also the current President of Horizon Buildings an apartment, office and industrial space management and Construction Company, which she started with her husband, Ed Zolla 40 years ago. Susan graduated from Bucknell University in 1968 majored in history and psychology and received a Masters Degree from USC in School Administration. She then worked as a history teacher and large school district administrator for eight years.
Susan married in 1971 to Edward Zolla, and had three children: Alissa Zolla Bartle, Mimi Zolla Neandross, and Anne Zolla. In 1988, purchased a 14 bedroom abandoned turn of the century house near the beach in Santa Monica and after a loving restoration project, turned it into 15 room Bed and Breakfast Inn, The Channel Road Inn. A successful hotel since it opened, The Channel Road Inn was featured in last July issue of Travel and Leisure Magazine as one of the Top U.S. Seaside Inns. Five years later in 1995, she built and opened the Inn at Playa del Rey, a 22 room boutique hotel. Conde Nast named The Inn at Playa del Rey as a member of their “Gold List” and the Inn has been the proud recipient of countless awards ever since including holding the #1 position on Trip Advisors Inns and Bed and Breakfast recommendations for Los Angeles.
Her community interest are somewhat varied. She has served as a Board of Directors Member for twelve years of the Airport Marina Counseling Service and is their current treasurer. She is also on the Executive Advisory Board member of the UCLA Women’s Health Center, Member of the Board of Overseers of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, supporter of One Voice, Bright Prospect and Determined to Succeed college access programs for our inner city youth. Her interest in educating our youth led her to start with her daughters, her own family reading program at a downtown elementary school. Called Vermont Summer Scholars the program involves the parents and grandparents of below grade level readers for three weeks after the end of school and focuses on reading and teaching parents how to help their child read. Since Ed’s death in 2006, Susan has taken over his position as President of Horizon Construction managing apartment complexes and office spaces. Of course like almost women her age, the “creations” for which she is most proud are her four grandchildren, Anna, Gaby, Mateo and Eli. Susan recently married a fellow Bucknellian, Alan Bilanin and added six more delightful grandchildren to the family. She jokes that when they go out to eat with the family these days they have to reserve the banquet room. Recently it was the youngest child’s 6th birthday and Susan gave Eli a framed photograph of a collection of their favorite birds. She has always enjoyed nature and treasures her spot overlooking the Ballona Wetlands. Sharing the joys of the wetlands inspires her to preserve and honor the work of the Friends.