After Hours: an ongoing series
"After Hours" is UCLA Today's series about faculty and staff who balance their work lives with fascinating, all-consuming hobbies, second jobs, volunteer work and other interests after they leave campus each day.
Social welfare associate professor Alfreda Iglehart has circled the globe as a marathoner, completing runs in Beijing, Bangkok and Iceland. Rio de Janeiro is where she'll be this year. In all, she has worn down her running shoes doing 37 marathons and 28 half-marathons.
Architect and lecturer Julia Koerner collaborates with 29-year-old fashion phenom Iris Van Herpen
of Amsterdam in the Netherlands to create futuristic, edgy designs in women’s wear for haute couture shows in Paris.
During the week, Brigham Harwell works at UCLA to raise awareness among young alumni and students that their contributions back to the university can make a huge difference to struggling students. On the weekends, the former UCLA defensive tackle runs a company that trains high school students to go to college and become defensive linemen.
Epidemiology Professor Haroutune Armenian discovered the serenity of painting watercolors while he lived through the dark days of the Lebanese Civil War in the mid-1980s. His portfolio captures scenes from around the world, and his work appears in a book.
You might have run into UCLA staffer Rachel Flores at the Fielding School of Public Health, but you can also glimpse her at farmers’ markets around L.A. selling her sugary butter-crunch candy. Flores and her husband started the company p.o.p candy to sell their twists on the classic treat, like top seller Rosemary Almond butter crunch, or their off-the-wall Chai Tea Granola Pecan Bar butter crunch.
Michelle Drever wowed the crowd at the 2012 All-Staff Picnic with her operatic voice, even inspiring a marriage proposal from a stranger. The singer comes from a California farm town and can sometimes be seen practicing an aria in her car while traffic crawls on Sunset Boulevard.
Kelly Goodman, an outreach manager for ASUCLA who indulges her love for improv comedy and acting on the weekends, is a headlining player with comedy troupe "2001: An Improv Odyssey" at the L.A. Connection Comedy Theatre in Sherman Oaks, and got her start in a Super Bowl commercial for Miller Lite.
Francis Longstaff, a finance professor, has a heavenly hobby that led to a fascinating discovery. He built his own observatory, and in a partnership with a UCLA astronomer, discovered an unknown galaxy.
Meet ethnomusicology and musicology Professor Tim Taylor, who, with his flute and encyclopedic knowledge of hundreds of Irish tunes, is welcome at any Irish pub around the world. He plays traditional Irish tunes at a bar in Long Beach, the Auld Dubliner, about 30 Sundays a year.
UCLA staffer Jonathan Wilson is a dedicated amateur photographer who challenged himself to an extreme task on leap day 2008: to take one inspired photo every day for four years until the next leap day in 2012. He completed his 1,462-day odyssey last week.
Henry Lim, an assistant in the UCLA Music Library, is an extraordinary Lego artist who has sold dozens of life-size Lego sculptures, re-created mind-bending M.C. Escher structures in 3-D for a museum and rendered family portraits in Legos.
Steve Yu, a Law School accountant by day, volunteers during his spare time as a public-speaking coach to the UCLA community.
Ayla Stern, coordinator of UCLA's Jumpstart Program in the Center for Community Learning, was recently appointed to the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee by City Councilman Paul Krekorian.
Matthew Giangrande, an administrative assistant in the International Institute's Center for World Languages, used his Italian grandmother's recipes to become the 24-year-old owner/operator/chef of Vesuvio, one of the latest gourmet food trucks roaming the streets of Los Angeles and stopping on campus.
Mike Padilla, a senior writer in UCLA Development Communications, is also the award-winning author of two novels: "Hard Language: Short Stories" and "The Girls from the Revolutionary Cantina."
Kenneth Wells is a professor of psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine and School of Public Health, director of the UCLA Health Services Research Center and adjunct staff member at the RAND Corp. He also composed the opera "The First Lady" about Eleanor Roosevelt and the challenges she faced following the death of her husband, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, including the aria, "I Never Wanted to Be a President's Wife."
Tom Lukas spends his days helping UCLA departments with their space planning and interior design needs, and his nights (and weekends) tending his makeshift vineyard and making wine.
Tony Torres, a dishwasher at UCLA Conference Center in Lake Arrowhead, takes advantage of his idyllic work location to pursue his passion: running marathons. He gets an edge by training in the high altitude, where he pounds out 100 to 130 miles a week.
Don Worth works in Administrative Information Services as an assistant vice chancellor. But on weekends, he steps back almost 150 years to don the hand-sewn uniform of a corporal in the Confederate Army or a Yankee private, hefting a 10-pound working musket.
Don Marquardt, an instructor in UCLA Extension's landscape architecture program, performs a one-man show devoted to landscape architecture's founding father, Frederick Law Olmsted, who designed New York's Central Park.
Raul Rodriguez, a facilities mechanic for the UCLA Medical Center, is also an extra in English-language TV shows and an actor with much more prominent roles in Spanish-speaking action flicks.
Gordon Webster, a senior superintendent in Facilities Management's Crafts and Alterations, is an electrician by trade who spends two nights a week teaching apprentice classes.
Elizabeth Patterson, a UCLA employee with Library Information Technology, has a successful second career as an artist.
Monica Mendez Leahy, a sportswear buyer for the UCLA Store, performs marriage ceremonies as a volunteer with the Los Angeles County Registrar Recorder, leads relationship-training workshops, and authored the book "1001 Questions to Ask Before You Get Married."
Paul Barone, a technology training manager in UCLA External Affairs, has been touring California with his rock band, Seismic.
Leslie Evans, the website and publications manager for UCLA's International Institute, spent the last 15 years creating an intricately detailed German dollhouse, complete with tiled kitchen, stained glass window, shingled roof and its own music system.
Zoe Cotton, a part-time employee in the Corporate, Foundation and Research Relations unit of Development in External Affairs tells how acting on a whim launched her second career.