Start the conversation … I like that theme! I’ll start with a little about my journey from 1965 Orange County (I now recognize what a sheltered, halcyon time it was to grow up) to 2015 Sacramento, and conclude with what I’m about today.
Graduated with a BS in biochem and a BA in psych from Cal State Fullerton in 1975 … on and off it took me seven schools and 10 years. During that period my father died and I, as the eldest, suddenly became responsible for handling his business interests.
After college I got my start in the corporate world working at Beckman Instruments in a science based job that I loved; during that time I shared an apartment with Bob Fainbarg in nearby Park Newport on the Back Bay – if I remember our theme back then was work hard and play hard.
Eventually, work took me to Sacramento, where I later married and settled down to raise two girls and a boy. My oldest, Michelle, is a professor at Hobart and William Smith in New York; the next, Pamela graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design and is an up-and-coming illustrator living in Oakland (pamelabaron.com); and my youngest, Matt, is still at Sac State studying nutrition. This past May my granddaughter, Ellie, was born in New York and suddenly I’m holding babies again … they are great.
After 17 years of marriage I divorced. Committed to mitigating the effect on the children, I focused on their best interests and today my ex and I are good friends and occasionally even go on vacation with the children and their companions. For the past eight years I’ve been dating a woman I met online. She is an attorney with a penchant for travel, adventure, knitting, and me.
I still live in Sacramento; my home is across the street from the American River and almost daily I enjoy a run or a bike ride on the beautiful, tree lined river bike trail.
My business life had been somewhat diverse; after Beckman I worked in loan underwriting, real estate appraisal, retail sales (I owned a One Hour MotoPhoto store), and stock and futures trading (unfortunately a disaster). The last 20 years, though, I’ve been a full time real estate investor (primarily in small commercial and multi-family properties) in partnership with my younger brother, Mike.
Over the years I’ve had the good fortune to travel to some interesting places, for instance the Pyramids, Machu Picchu, Paris, Tel Aviv, and Istanbul. I continue to travel and I’m planning a trip to Costa Rica later this year and to Cuba in early 2016.
Aside from children, the most gratifying investment I have ever made, in terms of time and effort, has been learning to swing dance. The Lindy Hop community is worldwide and I can usually find a place to dance no matter where I travel. I’ve danced in Chicago, New York, San Diego, and Orange County (at the Atomic Ballroom). If you’re a follow and like swing dancing, find me; I’d love to dance with you at the reunion!
My other passions today revolve around real estate and finance, exercise, nutrition, longevity research, and giving back to society (wonderful to see various classmates who have done so in a significant way, kudos to you).
I remained friends with Craig Juratsch, Bob Fainbarg, and Mike McCord and we see each other periodically. I’ve also visited with Don Baker, who I had for chemistry. I couldn’t resist including the following “then” photo; you should recognize three of us from our class.
But there were so many more classmates who provided tons of entertainment, encouragement, and competition in the classroom, at lunch time, in sports teams, and outside of school; and I really look forward to seeing many of them again.
If the varied and interesting “Here’s Wassup!!” bios are any indication, it should be an interesting, memorable, and fun reunion. 50 years! Wow! See you soon!