About Larry

Larry Kahn successfully negotiated the fast-paced world of domestic and international mergers and acquisitions for twenty years, first at a major New York law firm and then at an Atlanta Fortune 500 company. He penned The Jinx while on sabbatical in 1999 and retired in 2006 to write fiction full time (although many of his more cynical legal clients and associates had accused him of writing fiction full time for many years prior to retirement). He resides in Atlanta with his wife, Ellie, and their sons are pursuing professional careers.

Larry developed a keen interest in social issues while attending Yale Law School, an idealistic spirit that continues to infuse his novels. The vision of a colorblind America in his political thriller The Jinx led to endorsements by leaders of the ACLU, National Urban League and Artists Against Racism. And as the Baby Boomer generation scatters about the country, King of Paine envisions a renewed emphasis on family and tradition in which Americans create for their venerable elders, and ultimately themselves, a peaceful place to die.

In 2010, life threw Larry a curveball with a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease. As a Babe Ruth League baseball player in high school, the first two curveballs Larry ever saw knocked him on his backside. He hit the third one through the box for a single and has never backed away from a curveball since. For the moment, a great idea for a third novel is on the shelf while Larry has turned his attention to Parkinson’s advocacy. While many other good people are leading the charge for a cure, Larry has focused on helping newly diagnosed people with Parkinson’s learn how to live better with the disease. He has become a vocal advocate for vigorous exercise as a primary therapy for PD. He and Ellie were the co-founders of PD Gladiators, Inc., a Georgia nonprofit corporation, the mission of which was to educate the public, people with Parkinson’s disease, and the medical community about the role of exercise in slowing the progression of PD and to make community-based exercise programs available to people with PD and their caregivers. After growing the PD Gladiators Fitness Network to offer over 60 weekly classes adapted for people with PD serving almost 25,000 participant visits a year, PD Gladiators’ operations were transferred to the Parkinson’s Foundation on August 1, 2018.

Larry and Ellie served as the President and Secretary, respectively, of the Parkinson’s Foundation Georgia Advisory Board for another year. They retired from the Board in October 2019, and are focused on relearning how to have fun. Strangely, Larry finds real-life problem solving challenging and maybe even entertaining, if not “fun,” and has devoted some of his time to brainstorming ideas to improve the quality of life for people with Parkinson’s disease.

Dear Readers,

Thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoy my site and decide to spend some of your valuable leisure time reading my thoughts on Parkinson’s care and maybe taking a glance at my novels. Like many other thriller/suspense authors, especially those trained as attorneys, I craft intricate, well-researched plots, engage my characters in thought-provoking social drama and spice their lives with alluring romantic entanglements. Less common–and not for everyone–is my willingness to take readers to the brink of reality to imagine a more perfect world. My heroes may be ordinary (Ben Kravner, a young lawyer, in The Jinx) or larger than life (Frank Paine, an ex-Hollywood action star-turned-FBI agent, in King of Paine), but they and much of their supporting cast are intelligent, passionate men and women who grapple with personal flaws and unusual obstacles to ultimately improve their world. They curse and crack wise, make terrible mistakes that cost themselves and others dearly, yet their idealism shines through. Like me, they dare to dream.

Like my characters, Ellie and I have beaten some pretty long odds by achieving a great result for the Parkinson’s community by getting the Parkinson’s Foundation to provide hope to tens of thousands of Parkinson’s patients by focusing on the delivery of adapted exercise as a primary treatment for PD.

So, fellow dreamers, I invite you to explore my thoughts on Parkinson’s care for a heavy dose of reality or my novels to escape for a spell. I hope you find it all thought-provoking and entertaining. Please comment freely on this site, or drop me a note. I will respond to all inquiries.

Larry Kahn

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Larry Kahn Trivia

Hometown: Mahopac, NY

Adopted Hometown: Dunwoody, GA (featured prominently in King of Paine)

Writing Influences: Frederick Forsyth, John Grisham, Greg Iles, Ayn Rand

Favorite Books: Atlas Shrugged, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo¸ Pillars of the Earth; The Pelican Brief, The Odessa File, 24 Hours

Favorite Quote: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” — Margaret Mead

Favorite Movies: Almost Famous, Field of Dreams, The American President, Chariots of Fire, Driving Miss Daisy, Remember The Titans, As Good As It Gets, Secondhand Lions, Any Given Sunday, Gladiator, The Contender, Local Hero

Favorite Musical Artists: Tom Petty, REM, The Rolling Stones, U2, The Eagles, John Lennon

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  • Larry and Ellie Kahn

  • When I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2010, my neurologist told me there was nothing I could do to slow down an inevitable slide into disability. So I simply (apathetically?) went about the business of researching my third novel for over a year until I crossed paths with others who had discovered a curiously overlooked goldmine of scientific research suggesting vigorous exercise could help slow the progression of PD and improve quality of life.

     

    After experiencing the impact of exercise myself, my wife, Ellie, and I began brainstorming with other believers about how to effectively spread the gospel of exercise and hope.  We formed PD Gladiators in 2013, a nonprofit charged with developing a plan to ally metro Atlanta fitness instructors and clinicians to convince people with PD to take a proactive approach to managing their disease. PD Gladiators entered agreements with the Atlanta YMCA, Livramento Delgado Boxing Foundation, Yellow River Center and other independent fitness instructors to build a network of PD-specific exercise classes based on PD Gladiators’ promise to promote the exercise research and the PD Gladiators Fitness Network to local clinicians to create the referral “pipeline” necessary to make the adapted fitness programs sustainable. I believe recruiting the support of influential clinicians in our community from the start was the critical insight that has led to the phenomenal growth of the Network.

     

    By 2018, the Network consisted of over 60 weekly classes, and metro Atlanta “gladiators” logged almost 25,000 class visits for the year! On August 1, 2018, the Parkinson’s Foundation and PD Gladiators determined they could better serve the needs of the Parkinson’s community through an organizational unification. Ellie and I served on the Advisory Board for the Parkinson’s Foundation Georgia until retiring in October 2019. PD Gladiators Executive Director Annie Long continues to manage and grow the Network as an employee of the Parkinson’s Foundation.

     

    Ellie and I still practice the proactive, hopeful approach that we  preach. With Ellie’s loving support, I exercise daily, eat a nutritious diet supplemented as recommended by Dr. Laurie Mischley (a Parkinson’s researcher and naturopathic doctor practicing in Seattle), and have adopted good sleep habits. While excited to begin the retirement we had deferred to nurture PD Gladiators, I intend to devote some of my energy–without stress and deadlines–to brainstorm ideas for other areas of Parkinson’s care in need of intervention  for consideration by government and charitable organizations with the mission and resources to undertake these projects.

     

    I believe that problem-solving is a team sport, and I encourage you to join in the discussion. Let’s make Parkinson’s Ideas, Man an incubator for high impact solutions to the issues that effect us most.