Through Food and Philanthropy.

Marilyn Biggica is not only a chef and associate professor of food and nutrition at San Diego Continuing Education, she is also a supporter of the Above and Beyond Campaign, which supports the building of a next-generation hospital at Sharp Chula Vista. The new hospital, opening in 2019, is the South Bay’s first new hospital in more than 40 years and the single biggest health care project in our binational region.

In honor of her contributions to Sharp Chula Vista, the rooftop cafe in the new hospital tower will be named in her honor. She shared her approach to food and health, and the reasons why she supports Sharp Chula Vista.
How can hospitals improve the way they use food to heal?

At Sharp, they emphasize that it is not about diet, it is about lifestyle. If you are positive with patients and share nutritional information about your food, that will help patients make good choices while they are in the hospital and when they leave.

Why does the new cafe at Sharp Chula Vista inspire you?

The cafe is on top of a facility that is healing, mending and caring. I know Sharp has made it a priority to promote health and wellness and I think the rooftop cafe will be a good central point for mindful eating.

In 2014, Pablo Velez, CEO of Sharp Chula Vista, invited me to learn about the role of nutrition in health care. All of the people I met inspired me to make a $1 million gift to name the cafe and to continue giving to support the hospital. I believe in Sharp and know they are worthy of this and other future gifts. And, when I walk into the new hospital’s cafe for the first time, I know it will be the closest thing to heaven.

To learn about the campaign for Sharp Chula Vista contact Sarah Cantu at (619) 502-4369 or visit