The project will maintain the historical character of the physical building, while providing state-of-the-art upgrades. In addition, enhancements like seismic upgrades allow both the building and the tens of thousands of pieces of art inside to be better protected. The project is creating 25 percent more gallery space to make the museum an even more important center inside Santa Barbara’s community. In total, the renovation project is the most comprehensive effort ever undertaken by the museum, notes Kenny Slaught.
David Low was awarded a bachelor’s degree in biology from UC San Diego, notes Kenny Slaught. Low received his master’s degree in microbiology from San Diego State University and his Ph.D. in cellular biochemistry from UC Irvine. While working as a postdoctoral scholar at Stanford University, he conducted research in molecular microbiology in the lab of Stanley Falkow, who is now honored as a professor emeritus in microbiology and immunology. Low joined the UCSB faculty in 1998 after working for 13 years as a professor at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center. He was elected an American Academy of Microbiology fellow in 2013 and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2003.
As a supporter and active member of the UCSB Foundation, Kenny Slaught has recently posted on his blog at KennySlaught.com that “The University of California Santa Barbara announced on May 26, 2016 that it is a Grand Challenges Explorations grant winner.”
Many West Coast buyers are finding that with a white-hot housing market, they are forced to pay excessively high prices for older, less fashionable homes. Kenny Slaught notes that prices having been increasing steadily since 2008, and common reference, the Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller home price index, reveals that home prices in Los Angeles rose to their highest point during April of this year since October of 2007. Southern California’s larger metropolitan areas are no longer just reflecting recovery from the recession: they are closing in on their former peaks. Slaught notes that the turnaround can be attributed to many factors, including interest rates, job growth and supply and demand. 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages are currently hover around 3.5% or less, nearing 3.31 percent (the record low hit in November 2012) and pushing many toward buying. These historically low interest rates, coupled with strong employment numbers, such as a 2.4% gain in Los Angeles County and a 3.5% rise in Orange County, point to just why values have appreciated in an extraordinarily fast-paced manner. Home prices vary considerably statewide, but the inflated asking price of higher-end homes throughout California outpaces all other states with the exception of Hawaii. The feverish housing market cannot currently be satisfied by the slim supply available, with many first-timers forced to opt for condominium-style units that are readily available within a more modest price range.
Santa Barbara, in addition to being a popular tourist destination, has become a hub for young and developing businesses, notes Kenny Slaught, with dozens of promising, new companies founded in recent years. Many, including AppScale, LastLine, TrackR, and Salty Girl Seafood, have come directly out of the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB). Over $200 million has been raised from private investors for area startups in the last year, giving the Central Coast nearly twice the investment in innovation per capita than the greater Los Angeles area, a much larger market. While some may give in to the temptation of moving to Silicon Valley or Hollywood, local entrepreneurs recognize the importance of building a business in an environment which promotes growth. This results in the region being one of the best places in the country to launch and cultivate startups, with remarkable biotech, medical, technology, and scientific businesses like Inogen, Raytheon, Sonos, and BioIQ getting their start here.