Barry Leon LEON

Profile Updated: March 26, 2018
Residing In: Cognac France
Spouse/Partner? Tell us how long: Claudia Maria Kolshorn Leon - married 1977
Occupation: Psychologist/Management Consultant/Executive
Children/Grandchildren? If so, birth year and location: Ethan Gregory Leon - 1980, Houston, TX

Harper Isabel Leon - February 8, 2016, Austin, TX
Retired?

Yes

What did you do right after high school?

Went to school, quit, went to school, quit, went to school quit, went to school, finished - finally!!!

BS - 1969 Central Michigan University
PhD, Psychology - 1973 University of Texas at Austin
Married December 28, 1977

Voluntary Activities including Peace Corps.

Created a kids' recreation and sports program on the Chippewa Indian Reservation in Central Michigan and ran it for two years while in college.

Claudia and I have "adopted" single mothers and kids who are struggling for periods of up to three years, helping them find work and helping to stabilize their lives. Still doing so.

Claudia and I are both active participants in Kiva, the the international mico-loan organization.

Have you had different careers?

College Professor - Smith College - 4 years
Management Consultant, various companies - 20 years
Executive - Dow Corning 4 years
Partner/Director - Deloitte 3+ years until retiring in 2003
Retired bum - 13 years

Fun or interesting "adventures" or one of the high points of your life.

Travel to 42 countries (and counting) in all parts of the world. The most memorable may be Nepal, China, Japan and Brasil.

Consulted to the government of Indonesia for a couple of years and helped to prepare future Cabinet officers for their positions.

My wife and I had a son, Ethan, who grew into a terrific man and is now married to a wonderful woman, Lei-Lei, and living in Austin.

Lost my beloved hair sometime during the 90's - I continue to search for it and have vowed to continue to look until I find it! Have a massive mustache to compensate.

We have made many motor home trips to the Navajo and Hopi Nations in Utah and Arizona where my interest in collecting antique Navajo rugs began. The most exciting moment occurred when Ethan (then ten) and I were climbing in the rock hills on the Navajo reservation and found ourselves in what appeared to be a mountain lions den. There were lots of bones around including a half eaten lamb. Needless to say, we got out of there in a hurry!

Retired to our hunting ranch in Texas in 2003 and added our home in the mountains of Costa Rica in 2010 - having more fun now than ever. In 2014, we sold the ranch in Texas and bought a home in Saintes, France, just about an hour north of Bordeaux.

My folks came to Costa Rica for three weeks, and we celebrated my Dad's 90th birthday. The next year I went to Florida to celebrate my Mom's 90th birthday. We are incredibly lucky to have them both around - and I figure that I got some pretty good genes and should live to be 150 or so.

In 2017 we, sold our home in Costa Rica and in 2018 we sold our home in Saintes, France and bought a home in Cognac, France and are now doing a little renovation.

What do you do with your spare time? What are you passionate about?

Collect antique Navajo rugs

Follow sports team including Green Bay Packers, University of Texas (all sports), Boston Red Sox, Boston Bruins and Newcastle United FC

Learning to speak French - making negligible progress

Work with our dogs who are now in Costa Rica. Mine is a Beauceron, a French herding dog, bred in Rouen and Claudia's is a Kangal dog, a Turkish livestock guarding dog, bred in Denton Texas.

Unfortunately, both dogs died in 2012, just three months apart. After the Vandal died, Otto just fell apart - they had been together since Otto was six weeks old and he couldn't cope with the loss of his buddy. His weight went from 135 lbs to 85. They were both such sweet boys.

Our new home in Cognac has a little land and very large barns. This space will allow us to have dogs once again - this time it will be akitas, one of each of us.

Jazz mostly from the 50's & 60's - I have somewhere around 1,000 albums (thank God for hard drives, I wouldn't have room for actual albums). Oscar Peterson is a particular favorite

Helping kids and single moms having a tough time.

Making fun of donald trump and his band of crooks, sarah palin, george bush, rick perry and michelle bachmann supporters - they make it sooooo easy.

Have you lived one of your dreams?

January 25, 2014:

We have signed a contract to sell our ranch in Kerr County, Texas and, unless disaster strikes, will close this coming Wednesday, January 29. We will then drive to Austin to spend an evening with our kids and the next day we fly to France where we will buy a home in Saintes in the Charente Maritime, near the Atlantic Coast.

Needless to say, we are pretty excited. Claudia and I are so lucky to live the life that we do, half of each year in Atenas, Costa Rica with the other half being in Saintes.

Whoda thunk it????

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Almost all of them, including some that I didn't have either the foresight or the courage to dream - I just can't believe how lucky I am to have lived the life that I am living.

In the coming years, Claudia and I plan to do quite a bit of traveling and are now planning a trip to Japan, China and Tibet. We may need a slightly different wardrobe than we have in Costa Rica.

Publications or recordings? Ex: books, articles, films, music.

A couple of publications in psychological journals many years ago - nothing to write home about - and a few talks to APA (American Psychological Association) meetings as well as a couple of invited addresses at universities/colleges.

What would most surprise us to know about you now and what you have done?

Damn near everything.

Comments:

When I was a teenager, I found it almost impossible to gain any weight and spent those years as a pretty scrawny guy. I can now report that I have done an incredible job of conquering that problem and can now gain weight simply by thinking of the smell of freshly baked bread.

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Jul 09, 2017 at 10:49 AM

Happy birthday!

Jul 17, 2016 at 1:28 PM

Happy birthday!

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Aug 23, 2015 at 6:49 PM

Posted on: Aug 22, 2015 at 11:04 AM

Lauren/Patty,

French! That's great! Come visit us. We live in Saintes, France most of the year. And a belated happy birthday.

Barry

Jul 20, 2015 at 12:45 PM

Happy belated birthday!

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Jul 23, 2014 at 12:03 AM

Posted on: Jul 21, 2014 at 4:40 PM

Hi Janet, It was great to hear from you. That picture from Shalom was really something, wasn't it. I found it among my parents stuff when I was helping to pack them up to move from Florida to Milwaukee (so they could be close to my sister). Before we retired, Claudia and I lived in Chicago - you might know the building, Riverbend; it's the 38 story, skinny sliver of a building on Canal (333 W.) that sits at the top of the T made by the river across from the Merchandise Mart on the left and 333 Wacker on the right. We love Chicago and will return there one day. Here's a shot of some artwork that I had done a few years ago. I thought that you might get a kick out of it. Right on top of my bald head!

All my best,

Barry

Barry Leon LEON posted a message.
Jul 21, 2014 at 12:25 AM

Bought a home in Saintes in the Charente-Maritime of France, about an hour north of Bordeaux. So now we're splitting time between there and Costa Rica. Things couldn't have worked out much better for us. Now, all we need is for the Packers to win another Super Bowl!

Barry Leon LEON posted a message. New comment added.
Jul 24, 2014 at 3:28 PM

Posted on: Jan 26, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Mr. Yanow's (?) 6th Grade Class at Temple Shalom

Barry Leon LEON posted a message.
Jan 26, 2014 at 10:58 PM

We have signed a contract to sell our ranch in Kerr County, Texas and, unless disaster strikes, will close this coming Wednesday, January 29. We will then drive to Austin to spend an evening with our kids and the next day we fly to France where we will buy a home in Saintes in the Charente Maritime, near the Atlantic Coast.

Needless to say, we are pretty excited. Claudia and I are so lucky to live the life that we do, half of each year in Atenas, Costa Rica with the other half being in Saintes.

Whoda thunk it????

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Posted: Jan 26, 2014 at 10:48 PM
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:08 AM
My Beauceron named Vandal