Retired forensic psychiatrist lives the good life in La Jolla

Dr. Walter D. Hofmann is a retired forensic psychiatrist. Prior to retiring, he was the medical director of the forensic psychiatry unit at Los Angeles County Mental Health Forensic Psychiatry Department while working with the L.A. courts. He was charged with the task of determining if there was any emotional or psychological issue involved in a particular crime. Hofmann said it was a challenge to describe to a jury how these factors would determine whether the likes of “son-of-Sam” would go to a state prison or to a hospital - the stuff TV is now full of.

Hofmann went to undergraduate school at Pacific Union College near Napa and to medical school in Loma Linda. During the Korean War, he joined the Navy as a flight surgeon aboard the aircraft carrier, Forrestal, which was stationed in Norfolk, Va. He did his residency training in psychiatry at Ohio State University.

Today, Hofmann appreciates living in La Jolla near his daughter, Kathleen, and her family. He enjoys spending time with his 14 grandchildren, one great-granddaughter and seven children as well as traveling to places such as Europe, China, Russia, South America, Italy, Israel and Egypt.

What brought you to La Jolla?


What makes La Jolla special to you?

  1. Lovely family down here
  2. Ideal weather
  3. Comfortable place to live; great neighbors

If you could snap your fingers and have it done, what might you add, subtract or improve in La Jolla?

Actually, I can’t improve on “paradise.”

Who or what inspires you?

My religious beliefs.

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

  1. Jesus Christ
  2. Albert Einstein
  3. Mahatma Ghandi
  4. Abraham Lincoln
  5. Moses
  6. King Solomon
  7. Ronald Reagan
  8. Shelley Siegan

What are you currently reading?

“Compulsion” by Jonathan Kellerman and “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls.

What is your most prized possession?

My joy, faith, happiness and good humor.

What do you do for fun?

Read and travel.

Describe your greatest accomplishment.

Bringing seven wonderful children into this world.

What is your motto or philosophy of life?

Be joyful while helping others.