Vicki Pierson

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Vicki Pierson, a former columnist for The Malibu Times who was known as Malibu’s First Lady of Real Estate, died in Cannes, France on Aug. 6. She was 84.

Pierson moved to Malibu in 1946 after graduating from college. She wrote a popular column for The Times in the 1950s called “Malibu Meanderings.” The column was a mixture of the paper’s current News Briefs and People sections, detailing the happenings in Malibu. Pierson also wrote for other local publications in Southern California.

A landscaping award she received in a national competition prompted Pierson’s interest in decorating and real estate. She encouraged, trained and employed the most notable of Malibu’s first generation of women in real estate. She was the first female to join the Malibu Board of Realtors.

With her second husband of 48 years, Andrew Pierson, she also built and remodeled homes throughout Malibu during their joint real estate careers. Her passion for homes led her to dual careers of decorating and selling homes to the Hollywood elite while creating her own eclectic brand of Malibu lifestyle, inspiring many others to improve their original beach cottages.

Pierson was one of 37 candidates who ran for the Malibu City Council in 1963 during a failed attempt at cityhood.

Pierson’s encyclopedic knowledge and collection of wine along with the talents she honed in her kitchens gained her a reputation as Malibu’s premier hostess. She was profiled in Bon Appetit, regaling family and Malibu friends, John Frankenheimer and Burt Lancaster. She cooked for Julia Child and was said to be the only woman to have ever been allowed to cook in the kitchen of Roger Verge’s famed restaurant Le Moulin de Mougins in France. She and her husband made their second home in Mougins for the last 32 years. The couple has continued to maintain their home in the Malibu Colony.

Pierson was born in Washington D.C. to Col. Thomas and Margaret Maynard Jervey. Her parents later followed their daughters from Charleston, S.C. to the West Coast. She attended Randolph Macon’s Woman’s College in Lynchburg, Va. and the Ohio State University, where she studied journalism and earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She was the Homecoming queen and was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society for academic excellence.

Pierson is survived by her husband, Andrew; sons, Mark and Robin; son-in-law and daughter, Robert and Lynn Dornhelm; sister, Arden Jervey and five grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her brother, Thomas.