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“2015 Irish Woman of the Year” Awarded to Chef Geraldine Gilliland by The City of Los Angeles and the L.A. City Council 2.13.15

Successful restaurateur, Malibu resident and native Northern Irish entrepreneur Geraldine Gilliland is humbled and flattered to have received the nomination and award for “Irish woman of the year” by The Los Angeles City Council.

Gilliland has been a fixture in the Santa Monica and Malibu dining scene for 30 years and is also a well known philanthropist and animal-rights activist, having started her own nonprofit “Chiquita’s Friends” dedicated to rescuing and placing dogs-especially Beagles-in great homes in the Los Angeles area.

She has also sponsored over 20 native Irish men & women through the years via the J1 visa program, many of whom have gone on to successful careers of their own in The United States.

She currently owns two restaurants in Santa Monica- Finn McCool’s and Lula Cocina on main street as well as “Rancho Chiquita”, an event space in Malibu. She also plans to open another concept on Lincoln Boulevard late in 2016.

Gilliland has a cookbook coming out in April, right before Cinco de Mayo, based on the recipes of Lula Cocina, which can be pre-ordered on Amazon.

The award will be presented by the City Council on Friday, March 13 at Los Angeles City Hall. Mayor Eric Garcetti, Councilman Tom LeBonge and Terry Anderson of the Irish Fair will all be in attendance. Gilliland was honored to be nominated by many within the Irish community including none other than former Irish President Mary McAleese.

Also a part of the festivities is the “St. Patrick’s Day Grand ball” and “Rose of Tralee” presentation, which Will Take place Saturday March 14, 2015 at the Long Beach Renaissance. Tickets may be purchased at