NJP (Nice Jewish Person) Lauren Sofen
Each month, The Well highlights an amazing (and eligible!) individual.
This month, we have a conversation with NJP Lauren Sofen!
TW: How'd you decide to move back to the D?
LS: I had always said I wanted to move back and settle down in Michigan when I got older, but wasn't quite sure when I'd make the leap! As more and more cool things began happening in and around Detroit, a number of my close friends moved home, which made me feel like I could have the social life here that I really wanted. After living in both Chicago and Philly, I needed to see for myself if Detroit was just as awesome and great...
TW: What's it like living Downtown?
LS: It's quite fun to be walking distance to so many great cultural and sporting events! Also there is a diversity of people from all walks of life, which is invigorating to experience. I grew up into a city-girl apparently, so being able to walk so many places without using a car is awesome. I suppose staring at Canada while I run isn't too shabby either!
TW: You're a children's physical therapist by day -- how did you decide that's what you wanted to do professionally?
LS: I have always been into sports, which is what attracted me to physical therapy in the first place. It was getting involved in Dance Marathon at UofM that really sparked my passion for pediatric rehab. Every person deserves the chance to walk, run, and play, no matter what cards they have been dealt in life. Kids have so much life ahead of them that it means that much more to me to help them get there.
TW: Rumor has it you're a dedicated runner... What's the best/coolest race you've ever run?
LS: Indeed I do spend a fair amount of my life running from point A to point B. I've done a lot of fun races including one ending with chocolate fondue and one with a Fall Out Boy concert, but my favorite would probably be a 20-mile race that was fully along the Chicago lakefront path spanning from the north side to the south side. It spans an amazing city, you see all the cool touristy things, and it was also the first time I ran 20 miles without dying!
TW: You regularly volunteer with Hadassah... What do they do and how did you get involved?
LS: Hadassah is a Jewish women's Zionist organization, which has a hospital in Jerusalem that puts out groundbreaking research that is used all over the world. I became involved through my mom, who got me to volunteer while home from school. I run a program called GirlForce which promotes healthy lifestyle choices, including exercise, nutrition, body image and Jewish values, for 4th-6th grade girls in the Jewish Community.
TW: Where would you most like to travel to that you haven't visited?
LS: I have definitely been bitten by the travel bug, so this is a tough question! I have always wanted to go to Greece for the islands and the history, but backpacking through Alaska is on my bucket list for sure. And then there's Croatia, Iceland, Argentina, eastern Europe... the list is basically endless!
TW: What's your favorite Jewish holiday and why?
LS: My favorite holiday has always been Passover because I love the tradition of the Seder and the challenge of keeping it for a week. Plus, in order to eat the right foods, I essentially eat leftovers for a week -- and who doesn't like a week of brisket?
TW: Who is the coolest Jew?
LS: Natalie Portman! From Padme to Black Swan, I wouldn't mind being her when I grow up..
TW: If you could add an 11th commandment what would it be?
LS: Thou shalt eat chocolate with every meal!
TW: Finish the sentence: When I go to The Well...
LS: I find good friends and fun times.