Meet John White and Claudia Bayliff. They are two of the most unassuming people you’ll meet with careers and life experiences that will surprise and blow you away! They’re passionate about life and quite clearly each other. It only took two weeks of dating for them to start a life together!
John and Claudia, welcome back to Colorado. You will undoubtably be wonderful members of the community!
Q: What inspired and/or led you to your current career?
Claudia: I’m an attorney and have had a non-traditional career. I’ve spent 32 years working on sexual violence. For over 20 years I travelled all over the United States, Canada, and Europe educating judges, criminal justice professionals, and the medical field about sexual violence and sexual violence trials. And very recently, I retired!
John: I got a degree in Zoology, but couldn’t find a job in that field. My career started while I had been working on a cancer study and if a person was under a 100 pounds, the system kicked it out. I asked if I could figure out the issue in the program, learned how to program, and became a programmer. I never got a job in Zoology, ha! I was a programmer for 10-15 years and eventually decided I wanted to do something more interesting, so I became System’s Programmer working on networks which led me into designing international networks. The timing was perfect because I was doing this for IBM and AT&T when there weren’t a whole lot network architects. They sent me to London, Asia, India, and had me traveling all over the place until they trained enough architects around the world. This was all before Google. We were some of the first people using the internet for commercial purposes. I retired in 2017.
Q: When and how you two meet?
Claudia: His best friend worked for me before I became a lawyer. He introduced us, we dated for 2 weeks, moved in together, and just celebrated our 40th Anniversary!!
John: I think it’s going to work! hahaha
Q: How long have you lived or worked in Lafayette/Louisville?
Claudia: We lived here from 1982-2005 and then moved back east to the DC area, where I’m from. “Somebody” (pointing at John) has been lobbying to come back to Colorado, so we just moved back in May. We never plan to move again!
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Lafayette/Louisville?
John: Considering that it’s been COVID ever since we’ve been here, our two favorites have been the Tandoori Kitchen and Reelfish. We like going out to Chinese, but Chinese doesn’t always do well with carry out.
Claudia: Plus, the people are really nice at those two restaurants. We’ve haven’t had a chance to really check out the restaurants because we are in the high risk group (with COVID), so we’ve tried to be very careful.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? And why?
John: We were supposed to go to on a safari with some friends of ours over the summer. Obviously, that got delayed, so we’re hoping to do it next summer.
Claudia: We are big travelers, so this (COVID) has been really hard for us. John has been to 55 countries and I’ve been to about 38. We’ve also been able to visit all 50 states. We postponed our trip to Greenland with some friends who are big naturalists, both with PhD’s in biology. The trip is a combination of art, culture, and wildlife. Plus I am a big “Europe person” – you put me in an art museum in Europe and I’m the happiest.
Q: What is the first movie you remember seeing in a theater?
Claudia: The first one I remember is Gone with the Wind.
John: I remember my mom saying that I loved Dumbo.
Q: What advice would you give to a crowd of people?
Claudia: Wear a mask, stay inside, wash you hands, and understand this is a public health crisis not a political issue.
John: I had COVID in March when we were in Hawaii. I was lucky because I got it before the crisis scare increased and before a couple of her cousins died. My focus is be careful, and there’s so many places around here that you can enjoy even under lockdown. The lakes, the wildlife, the hiking trails, and biking trails.
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
John: I think all things in my bucket relate to travel. I’d like to go to Antarctica, Greenland, and we haven’t been to Australia or New Zealand.
Claudia: I have the travel bucket list items as well, but I really want to see a woman President.
Q: What are your three favorite bands that you would like to see (dead or alive)?
Claudia: I’m more an art person than music. I like post-impressionists, I love Vermeer. He painted maybe 36 paintings. I’ve seen most of them and I’d like to see all of them. I love the post-impressionist paintings in Paris art museums.
John: I would like to see Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac.
Q: What current / former local business makes you the most nostalgic about Lafayette/Louisville?
John: I can’t wait to get out to Bear Lake and Rocky Mountain National Park again. I also want to go skiing again, that’s my favorite. As soon as we got here, we went to downtown Boulder to just reminisce. But, it’s not the same place as it was in mid 1980s!
Claudia: We have really close friends from when we first lived here, so we have people in Boulder who we’ve been friends with for almost 40 years! I used to do lots of cooking, lots of entertaining, and I really miss having the leaves in the table with 12 people over for dinner.
John: One of the parties we started hosting was a New Year’s in Nova Scotia. By 9:00pm most of our friends would be pooped, but at that time in Nova Scotia it’s midnight. So, we’d have a themed New Year’s party with things like the Nova Scotia flag and celebrate at 9pm!
Q: If you could choose anyone that is alive today and not a relative; with whom would you love to have lunch? Why? And where locally would y’all meet for this lunch?
Claudia & John: It would be nice to talk and have lunch with Barrack and Michelle Obama, we loved her book. We’ll take them to the Flagstaff House.
Q: What is your favorite thing or something unique about Lafayette/Louisville?
Claudia: For me, I’d say the generosity in the community. Two things come to mind. One is a woman, I think her name is Serena Isabelle, who leads a group of women helping kids who age out of the foster care system. She tries to get them set up and get things they need. I used to represent abused children, so I would love to meet her and get connected with that effort. The second is another group of women who found out that the residents of the Golden West Nursing Home had been stuck in their rooms since March eating their meals on styrofoam plates with nothing for the holidays. So, they organized a whole campaign and they brought flower arrangements, school children made cards, and got gift bags for everybody. I’ve been really impressed with the volunteering and generosity in the community.
John: The trails, the lakes, the access to the outdoors. It’s a perfect combination of being able to do everything you want.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?
Claudia: We are done with moving.
John: Right here!
Q: What is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
Claudia: I am the oldest of 7 kids.
Q: What 3 words or phrases come to mind when you think of the word HOME?
Claudia: Library, Settled, and Entertaining friends.
John: Comfort, Light, and Here… Right here. Although we love Boulder County, it wouldn’t be worth moving here if it weren’t for our friends, so I think Friends would also be one of the words.
Q: If you have a full-time staff member that is fully paid for, who would you choose? Driver, Nanny, Personal Trainer, Chef, or anything you want.
Claudia: A driver! I hate to drive and have absolutely no sense of direction.
John: It would be a chef. The first date we had I cooked dinner for her. She was so horrified that she suggested she should cook and I do the dishes. That’s worked for 40 years. Hahaha.
Q: Is there something that you would like to see in the community, add it or change it, what do you think would that be?
Claudia & John: Open restaurants!