In order to keep in touch with our ever-growing alumni, we have started identifying individuals to head up regional and country groups in areas where there is a thriving community of Old Brightonians. The commitment of these individuals' time will be an invaluable resource for the Old Brightonians, as they help us to spread the net in engaging our former pupils. In the USA we are lucky to have Ingram Losner (BCJS 1971-73, D. 1973-78). Ingram went to live in the US in 1994 for what he thought would be a two year stint, but ended up staying and making his life there.
Ingram is our Old Brightonians USA Ambassador, and should you ever be in the USA on business or pleasure, he'd be delighted to hear from you.
- When you were at Brighton College, what did you want to be when you 'grew-up'?
- What are you now you've grown up?
Hopefully a well-rounded, ethical person with a strong social conscience, a desire to be a force for good in the world (or my small part of it), a loving and caring Husband and Father (we have 2 boys, aged 20 and 15, Josh who is studying Political Science at the University of Oregon and Joseph who is a "Freshman" in High School) and a good example to my own children and those around me. Hey, we can all aspire...! I'll have to let others be the judge of whether I'm even anywhere close to achieving any of this! In fact, I'm not even sure that I've "grown up!" And if you asked my wife (and kids) she would likely say that I become more immature with age!! I've certainly got older and a little rounder....but if you mean, business wise, well, I run a professional staffing and recruiting firm in the US. We came to the US in 1994 for what was supposed to be a 2 year stint. My wife was actually selected to head up a Biotech Joint Venture in La Jolla near San Diego in California. And we stayed...
But in the interests of providing you with a full and complete picture of who I am, I really ought to tell you a little bit about my extracurricular activities which are many and varied, just as they were in school. In fact, I can honestly say that - formal classes aside - school was all about the friendships which have proved life lasting and extracurricular activities like Public Speaking; acting in several school plays (I can still remember the Plays and the parts I played in them); and of course the inter house rivalries and representing the school at Soccer, Cricket and Rugby.
It was these activities that defined me then, just as I believe that my involvement in non-profit boards, political advocacy (can't be Prime Minister as a result of my dual nationality although I still have dreams of some form of political representation), and philanthropy defines me today. I am on the Board of a local youth Soccer Club in San Diego (we have about 80 teams - boys and girls - from aged 6 to 19); the Board of Trustees of the school that my younger son attends and from which my older son graduated last year; the Board of the San Diego-Asian Film Foundation; and the council of an Israel advocacy group. I am on the Board of the Royal Holloway College US Foundation and of course, was delighted to be asked to be the US Ambassador for the OB's.
- What is your best memory of school?
Tough one because of course, there are so many. I think that there are actually several and none of them involve academics!!! The House sport competitions have to be up there. That sense of involvement and camaraderie is still with me today. The House music competition and the high jinks surrounding it are priceless. One particular memory is one that can be told 30 odd years later of course with relative impunity....it was when several of my classmates were messing around with matches in their study and the sofa (well before the days of fire resistant materials!!) caught fire. My classmates hastily dragged the sofa out into the open just at the moment when the Headmaster was showing around prospective parents!! I wonder how he explained that one away!! "Look at how seriously the boys take their Chemistry lessons!! They take their work back into their studies with them!!" On a more serious note, I can still remember the moment when the Headmaster, Bill Blackshaw asked me to be Head Boy.
- What was the best piece of advice you were given?
Actually by Bill Blackshaw himself. It was at the very end of our Upper VIth year when the entire class was sitting in the old History Lecture Room waiting for the Headmaster to say his formal goodbye to us and waiting for him to impart some serious wisdom. We were expecting a pretty lengthy lecture full of "do's and don'ts". What we got was a price of advice which was delivered in about 15 seconds, the central theme of which resonates to this day. The actual words were..."In life, whatever you do; wherever you are, if you remember this, you won't go far wrong. Always reply by return of mail". And that was it! Always reply be return of mail! Very few write letters today of course, but the essence of that message remains as important and relevant today as it did back then! Respond to emails; return phone calls as soon as you can. The message was about respect, follow through and efficiency of process. Great advice!
- What do you do /did you do as a career?
Upon graduation from Royal Holloway with a degree in Modern History, Politics and Economic History, I went into Accountancy. After 4 years in Public Accounting I went into the Recruiting business. I have been in it ever since - now spanning 25 years. Wow! Where did that all go?!
- What does your job involve?
I now run a US based staffing firm which I set up 4 years ago with a Partner. We recruit people for a varied client base but specifically in the Life Sciences, Technology, Financing and Accounting space. We have 30 core employees and about 120 contract employees based out of our 4 locations - San Diego, Orange County, LA and Washington DC. My role is predominantly strategic - developing and growing the business; and running the day to day operations.
- What are the most challenging parts of your job?
Always has been ensuring that we hire and retain the best people in the business. I've always sought to hire people that are more talented than me. Fortunately I have a very large pool of people that fall into such a category!!
- What have you done that you are most proud of?
Giving expression to youth - whether it's through teaching, mentoring, coaching sport. I am inspired by youth.
- What is the single thing that would most improve the quality of your life?
I really do consider myself to have been blessed. I wouldn't change a thing (beyond Brighton getting into the Premier League and Spurs winning the Champions League!).
- What are the three objects you would take with you to a desert island?
Not sure that I would describe them as objects but I would take my wife and 2 kids! If you're looking for something less human then I would have to say a) all my photographs b) my music and c) my ipad (with all my books, literature and inspirational quotes and speeches).
- How would you like to be remembered?
As somebody who was a good Father and Husband; a person who cared for people; who put concern for the individual welfare above any kind of dogma.