Lillian Dean Inspiration Award
The Lillian Dean Inspiration Award is given by the Central Coast Writers Conference to a Central Coast author or mentor who has demonstrated achievement, dedication, and facilitated early writers to grow and flourish. The recipient is a mentor and peer to all who tap the keys and strive to create with the written word. The award is named for Lillian Dean, the Cuesta College instructor who created the Central Coast Writers Conference 35 years ago and encouraged writers to improve their skills and ultimately publish. Past recipients include Carroll Leslie, Wendelin Van Draanen, Tom Wilmer, David Congalton, Paul Alan Fahey, Catherine Ryan Hyde, and other distinguished writers and supporters.
The award ceremony will be part of the Keynote at the Central Coast Writers Conference on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at the Harold J. Miossi Cultural and Performing Arts Center.
The Lillian Dean Inspiration Award Recipient for 2019 is...
The Cuesta College Central Coast Writers Conference congratulates
Judy Salamacha fulfilled her childhood career aspirations to write for newspapers when she relocated to the Central Coast. She retired in 2018 after sixteen years as a deadline reporter/photographer, feature writer and columnist published weekly or bi-weekly in the San Luis Obispo Tribune, Morro Bay Sun Bulletin, and the newspapers and magazines published by Simply Clear Marketing & Media, Living Lavishly, Inspired Health, The Bay News, Coast News, and SLO City News, Reveal the Central Coast and Biz Matters.
Judy has often stated the publication of her co-authored creative nonfiction, Colonel Baker’s Field: An American Pioneer Story (Bear State Books 2013) is a direct result of what she and her co-author Sandra Mittelsteadt learned while Judy directed the Central Coast Writers Conference for five years. Being a native of Bakersfield, CA, and a former marketing director for Castle & Cooke, Mesa Marin Raceway, KGET-TV (NBC) and her own company, Salamacha PR Strategies helped convince community members and educators to fund 1,200 extra copies of a second printing of her stand-alone biography of the city’s founder for all Metro-Bakersfield middle schools.
Her writing life has included leadership positions, presentation requests and active volunteering at CCWC, Writers of Kern, California Writers Club, SLO NightWriters, and the San Francisco Writers Conference. She continues to work on her middle-grade historical fiction with her four fellow writers fondly known as Critiki Writers Group. Her blog www.judysalamacha.com updates many of the columns she has written about people and events she’s enjoyed writing about on the Central Coast.
Judy is also active in her community of Morro Bay. She is a past president of Morro Bay Rotary and led her club’s efforts to co-produce the SLO County Human Trafficking Summit in 2018. She also worked on the Board of Directors to build and open the Morro Bay Maritime Museum in 2018 after a 20-year quest by founders to preserve the Central Coast’s maritime history.
She is married to Bob, a retired teacher from the Kern County High School District. They have two children living and working on the Central Coast Jeremy is owner/general for Salamacha Construction and his wife Rena is COO for MEE Memorial Hospital and their daughter is in the United States Air Force. Jody Hollier is Assistant Administrator at Garden House of Morro Bay and her husband Michael is an Environmental Planner at Cal Trans.