Linda Janon of La Jolla works to assist those dealing with mental illness

Linda Janon was born in New York City with a passion for art and dance. She studied at the Fashion Institute of Technology with a major in design. As an illustrator she worked with the San Diego Opera and


magazine. However, it was her role as a mother that ultimately changed the trajectory of her life.

In 1993, as her daughter battled against depression, Janon saw firsthand the need to change the perception and treatment of mental illness. This experience served as her inspiration to found the Behavioral Health Committee of Jewish Family Service of San Diego. The committee has grown to some 30 volunteers who host two annual educational programs, including a Community Resource Fair. While Janon still explores her artistic nature, her passion has changed to working with JFS to bring awareness to the issues of people living with and caring for those with mental illness. She is making a difference!

What brought you to La Jolla?

Originally, we moved to La Jolla because my husband joined the staff of UCSD. We stayed because of the beauty and community of La Jolla.

What might you add, subtract or improve in the area?

La Jolla has changed so much over that last 20 years. It has become a destination more than an intimate community. We have lost local businesses including the Cove Theatre, Burns Drugs and other small family-owned businesses and we are at risk of losing our post office. La Jolla has become a less personal community. However, there are many people who feel the way I do and collectively we are trying to save La Jolla’s history.

Who or what inspires you?

Nature inspires me. I am an artist by training and birth. History inspires me as does those individuals who bravely act for causes they believe in.

What is it that you most dislike?

I most dislike pretentiousness.

If you hosted a dinner party for eight, whom (living or deceased) would you invite?

I couldn’t pick eight, so there are nine: my husband, Dr. Edward Janon, Nora Ephron, Dorothy Kearns Goodwin, Georgia O’Keefe, Marc Chagall, Steven Spielberg, David Hockney, Emily Bronte and Gene Kelly.

What is your most-prized possession?

My most-prized possessions are the people with whom I enjoy surrounding myself, including my family and my dog, Rudy.

What are your five favorite movies?

I actually have six: “Dr. Zhivago,”

recalled. “He took me by the hand and, sure enough, they had some plaster of Paris, hand-painted, World War II clown buttons.

“I picked them up and at the bottom of the dish were two plique-à-jour enamel buttons. I paid $1 apiece for them and the next day I sold one for $400 and kept the other one for my collection.” u

“Schindler’s List,” “Wuthering Heights, “Yentl,” “An American in Paris” and “Enchanted Cottage.”

What do you do for fun?

For fun, I love to travel, draw, read, play with Rudy and daydream.

What is your motto or philosophy of life?

To care and then do something about it!

What would be your dream vacation?

Wyoming is a very dramatic place between the wildlife, weather and geography. My dream vacation would be drawing from nature, hiking and horseback riding in Wyoming.