J.D. Roth, executive producer of NBC’s “The Biggest Loser,” will have a second weight-loss show in prime time when “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition” debuts May 30 on ABC.

As if that weren’t enough, his weight loss and lifestyle transformation show “Revolution” will be part of the programming block replacing ABC’s recently canceled soaps “All My Children” and “One Life to Live.”

Why is Roth – a trim 147 pounds – so focused on helping folks shed weight?

He explained that he’s from an overweight family.

“I have a twin sister who’s overweight, a little sister who’s overweight, my mom and dad, too,” said Roth, 43. “Every night at 8 o’clock, that ice cream got broken out.”

But he, his wife and two kids have a very different lifestyle.

“I skateboard to school in the morning with my kids and then I go for a run,” Roth said. “We get on our bikes and we ride into town for dinner and we ride our bikes home.”

Going Native

Jennifer Burkes may have just been sworn in as an attorney in Los Angeles last week, but for years she had her own practice as a plaintiff’s attorney in Gulfport, Miss.

All that was left of Burkes’ old office was a concrete slab when Hurricane Katrina swept through in 2005. After the storm, which also badly damaged her home, she and her husband decided to move elsewhere for a fresh start.

She got a job as a clerk for old friend Michael Alder of the Beverly Hills firm AlderLaw PC. She decided last year to make the move permanent, so the 47-year-old Burkes passed the California Bar and Multistate Professional Responsibility exams. Last week, she started as an associate at Alder’s firm.

But the biggest adjustment might have been getting used to two L.A. staples: driving and sushi. It was a year before she ever took the freeway.

“I would set my GPS to purposefully avoid the freeway – I was petrified,” she said. “And I thought sushi was the most disgusting thing in the world, and now I think the worst thing about Mississippi would be that I can’t get sushi delivered to my front door. I guess I turned L.A.”

Old School Tie

Jose Villa, chief executive at downtown advertising agency Sensis, went through a range of emotions while he listened to a keynote address by actor Edward James Olmos.

The event was Hispanicize, an April 8 conference for Latino online marketers held in Hollywood, and Olmos delivered a rambling keynote about an impending economic collapse, the toll of Mexican drug wars and the miracles of medical science. Olmos said he had watched the documentary “Inside Job” about the economic meltdown 17 times and had compiled a list of prominent economists he planned to hold accountable. He mentioned “the president of Harvard,” a reference to Lawrence Summers, the former Treasury secretary.

Later he asked: “Who in the audience is from Harvard?”

One hand went up – Villa’s.

“And I thought, ‘Oh, no, why did I raise my hand?’” he said.

Instead of condemning the university, Olmos praised it. That’s because Harvard researchers recently reported that they partially reversed aging in mice, and Olmos speculated the technology would soon make it possible for human life spans to be measured in centuries.

For Villa, it was a bizarre – and funny – turnaround.

“I went from the lowest lows to highest highs,” he said. “He brought me back from the precipice of being one of the worst people who messed up our economy to representing the geniuses who will extend human life.”

Staff reporters Greg Hernandez, Alfred Lee and Joel Russell contributed to this column. Page 3 is compiled by Editor Charles Crumpley. He can be reached at crumpley@labusinessjournal.com.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.