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Debbie L. Sklar (Open Post)

Debbie L. Sklar
949-201-0330

Email: debbie.sklar@patch.comPhone: 949/201-0330Bio: If my name sounds familiar in these parts, it is. I've been in the area covering our fair city of Laguna Niguel for almost 20 years and enjoying every moment. From fun features and a weekly column about our "Neighbors," maybe I've written about you, too. If I haven't, please let me know! I'd love to give you your 15 minutes of fame. In addition, I have been a journalist for close to three decades covering a diverse range of topics ranging from telecommunications trends to travel destinations and international celebrities. A Michigan native, I graduated from the Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism. I went on to work on my Master's at our rival, the University of Michigan. After graduating, I landed a number of internships for some of Detroit's largest and most prestigious magazines including Detroit Monthly, where I reported on local celebrities and many of the Detroit Pistons.  After several years of reporting and writing for the Detroit News, the Detroit Jewish News, the Detroit Free Press and other publications including wire services such as the Associated Press and Reuters, I became a lifestyles editor and columnist for a chain of weekly newspapers with a combined circulation of 600,000. In the late 1990s, I was headhunted by one of Arizona's daily newspapers, the Daily News-Sun, and accepted the position of staff writer.  My career progressed dramatically and after 1 year, I became the Editor-in-Chief of Arizona Homes & Lifestyles magazine, writing about such luminaries as best-selling author, Clive Cussler, cartoonist Bill Keane of the Family Circus fame and the late columnist, Erma Bombeck. After a few years of the heat, I decided I needed to move onto bigger and cooler things. I arrived in Southern California in 1997 and began working as a magazine editor for a global publishing company. I covered high-tech issues, reported on Dot-com companies, telephone carriers and the wireless industry for 4 years earning some writing  awards along the way, all while building a freelance success. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to write articles from Coast-to-Coast for such publications as Bob Vila.com, Phoenix Home and Garden, the Los Angeles Times, Time, USA Today, People, OC Register, Celebrity Life Magazine, Star, DIY.com, Doctor of Dentistry, and various real estate trade publications.  When I'm not working, I'm busy writing a novel about a former Warner Bros. starlet who grew up right here in Laguna Niguel, by the name of Beverly Roberts. Sadly, we lost her recently, but the hours I spent with her are forming the pages of a wonderful bio that I hope to have finished in 2012. I also love to play golf and spend time chasing my Shih Tzu, Gabrielle, around who is appropriately nicknamed "Gabby." I am looking forward to covering Laguna Niguel from all sides of the spectrum.Our Mission at Patch:At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable. This disclosure is not a license for you to inject your beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that your beliefs are on the record will cause you to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that we failed in this mission, please let us know.Politics How would you describe your political beliefs? It depends on if I listened to Rush Limbaugh that day. Religion How religious would you consider yourself? I consider myself spiritual but not very religious. Local Hot-Button IssuesWhat do you think are the most important issues facing the community?  Declining business in Laguna Niguel due to the slumping economy, the endless array of foreclosures and whether our city really needs a multi-billion dollar city hall minus a courthouse.

Recent Contributions

Collector Car & Motorcycle Weekend to Feature Dana Point Concours d'Elegance

Collector Car & Motorcycle Weekend to Feature Dana Point Concours d'Elegance

The event will celebrate its 31st year between June 21-23 at the St, Regis Resort in Monarch Beach.
Dana Point Symphony Returns in February

Dana Point Symphony Returns in February

Opening night is Feb. 8, with the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto performed by American violin virtuoso Elizabeth Pitcairn on the Red Mendelssohn Stradivarius of 1720.

WATCH: Whirling, Twirling Whale off Capo Beach

This gray whale performed some pretty fancy stunts on Monday off the coastline, according to one whale-watching company.
WATCH: Whirling, Twirling Whale Stuns Passengers In Dana Point

WATCH: Whirling, Twirling Whale Stuns Passengers In Dana Point

This gray whale performed some pretty fancy stunts on Monday off the coastline, according to one whale watching company.
OBIT: Mary Helen Emerson Limebrook of Capo Beach

OBIT: Mary Helen Emerson Limebrook of Capo Beach

Emerson, 91, lived a full life, mostly near the Pacific Ocean. Her husband was a teacher and administrator in Capo Unified.
The Bird Rescuer

The Bird Rescuer

Laguna Niguel resident, Kristi Jolliffe, lost her job as a human resources director in 2006, she now devotes her time to saving birds.

WATCH: Dramatic Bobcat Rescue, Don't Try This at Home

In the past year a number of bobcats -- and other forms of wildlife-- have been sighted in Laguna Niguel, but these are not creatures to mess with as this YouTube shows regardless of where t
Injured School Principal Gets Substitute

Injured School Principal Gets Substitute

Dennie Samuels steps in for Debi Culbertson at Moulton Elementary in Laguna Niguel.

MOVIE REVIEW: 'Parental Guidance' Could Use Some Guidance

The film is playing in Laguna Niguel at the Cinepolis at Ocean Ranch starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler as grandparents.
Jobless Rate Unchanged, Could Be Call For More Temps in 2013

Jobless Rate Unchanged, Could Be Call For More Temps in 2013

Accountemps' Branch Manager in Laguna Niguel, Jennifer Caison says: "We’re seeing hiring continue to stabilize rounding out 2012, and heading into the New Year."
VIDEO: The Giant Squid Keep Coming

VIDEO: The Giant Squid Keep Coming

UPDATED: Now more than 800 were caught, according to one local captain.
2K Pounds Rainbow Trout Stocked In Laguna Niguel Lake

2K Pounds Rainbow Trout Stocked In Laguna Niguel Lake

Another stocking will be on Tuesday for your fishing pleasure.
VIDEO: Update, More Than 100 Jumbo Squid Invade Coast

VIDEO: Update, More Than 100 Jumbo Squid Invade Coast

Several Humboldts have been seen by passengers dotting along the coastline. On Thursday night, more than 100 were caught, according to one local captain.
Caller Reports Roommate 'Howling' Like Wolf

Caller Reports Roommate 'Howling' Like Wolf

A rundown of calls that came into the O.C. Sheriff’s Department from Dec. 23-24 in Dana Point and Laguna Niguel.
Fast Food Friday: Chicken Nuggets, Tortilla Soup and a Pizza Deal

Fast Food Friday: Chicken Nuggets, Tortilla Soup and a Pizza Deal

It's the end of the week Dana Point and Laguna Niguel residents. Here are some ways to start it off, and not in the kitchen.
It's National Sleep Day Today (and Tonight)

It's National Sleep Day Today (and Tonight)

Jan. 3 is considered national sleep day and what better way to celebrate than by getting a good night's rest. Here are some places in Dana Point and Laguna Niguel to get what you need.
VIDEO: Update, 1300+ Jumbo Squid Invade Dana Point Coast

VIDEO: Update, 1300+ Jumbo Squid Invade Dana Point Coast

Large numbers of Humboldt squid have been seen by passengers dotting the coastline since Wednesday night, many weighing between 20-25 pounds, according to one local captain.
Starbucks Seals Deal With Teavana

Starbucks Seals Deal With Teavana

With multiple locations in Dana Point and Laguna Niguel, the coffee giant has completed the acquisition of the tea company adding to its growing portfolio.
VIDEO: First Baby Gray Whale of Season Emerges in Dana Point

VIDEO: First Baby Gray Whale of Season Emerges in Dana Point

Calf and mother were seen Sunday as large numbers of whales began to migrate south.
Easy Way To Kick Off New Year's Resolution to Lose Weight

Easy Way To Kick Off New Year's Resolution to Lose Weight

Starbucks has new nutrition-packed oatmeal at locations in Dana Point and Laguna Niguel to help you start eating healthier now that the holidays are over.