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Hi I'm Elliot Kollman

I grew up in San Francisco. I'm the former Director of State Crime Laboratories in New Mexico and Maine. And, I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Although I was born in Arkansas, I spent the bulk of my life in California. My “adult life” was spent primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area where I met my wife of nearly 35 years. Professionally, I spent 13 years as a scientist with the U. S. Geological Survey before finding my life’s calling as a forensic scientist. I’ll be retiring from that calling at the end of 2015. During my 42 years of adulthood I’ve explored many hobbies, but as retirement approaches travel and cooking have risen to the forefront. Over the past four decades, we have explored much of Western Europe, Great Britain and the Caribbean and have enjoyed both the cultures and the food. However, post-retirement, I plan on reacquainting myself with some of my former interests, as well – in particular model ship building and writing. My wife and I currently reside in Maine with our four children (well, cats actually). Upon retirement, we’ll be splitting our time between Texas and Maine (I am NOT a Winter person). I miss the bustle of city life, but also appreciate the solitude and peace that Maine’s rural areas offer. The Lord has blessed me. After meager beginnings in Arkansas, He has provided me with the opportunities in life that has allowed me to experience prosperity.

Why I am a Mormon

I came late to the Church. A few weeks after my 61st birthday I celebrated my baptism and confirmation in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, but my journey began four decades earlier. As a child growing up in Southern California I had a loose affiliation with the Methodist Church. Loose, because other than at Christmas, church was rarely a part of our lives. My first experience with Latter Day Saints came a few years after my college experience came to an end. A college compatriot, David married Ellen of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We often engaged in conversations about the differences between the many variations of Christianity presented by the differing religions. I was deeply impacted by two concepts that appeared to be unique to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints: 1) there is a path to Heaven for anyone whether they are baptized while living or not; 2) there are multiple stages of Heaven, even the least of which is infinitely better than life during our stay on Earth. The next few decades saw many changes in my life, not the least of which was a change in career, the death of my two brothers, and a move from California to New Mexico and now to Maine. I have been blessed with many hardships early in my life including being both the witness of, and cause of, a murder by my Grandmother when I was about 5 years old; the death of friends and family and other tragedies. I have also been blessed by a healthy life, success and great bounty. I have witnessed some of the worse things that man can inflict upon one another. Few can claim such a rich and full life. But that life still contained a touch of emptiness, a void. I know the bounty and success that have been bestowed upon me could not have been of my own doing. In my darkest times and brightest moments I have felt a guiding Spirit. What has finally led me to the Church was a desire to fill that void and it can only be filled by giving back.

How I live my faith

Mosiah 2:17 says “And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.” From before I joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this was a guiding principle for me – service to others. Part of that service includes being an Assistant Scoutmaster for the Boy Scout troop that our Church sponsors. Although the troop is sponsored by the church most of the scouts are from the community at large. Many are from single parent homes and I find it very rewarding to help provide additional adult involvement in their lives. I also teach Sunday school (Gospel Principles) at the Church. I particularly enjoy the exchanges with the attendees. They range in age from youth to those who exceed my 62 years. As a relatively new member of the Church (baptized November 1, 2014) I find myself learning along with my “students”. It makes for wonderfully uplifting (and occasionally awkward) sessions. Outside of Church, my profession has often brought me into contact with people whose lives have been shattered by horrible events. Compassion, understanding, and sometimes just a willingness to listen provide an invaluable service. I never forget that victim or miscreant, they are all children of God.