For Kayla Smith, a first-grader at Westport Heights Elementary School, the clock is ticking.

Kayla has leukemia, and her doctors wait every day to find a donor whose bone marrow matches hers so they can perform a transplant and hopefully save her life.

When Boy Scout Adam Ohnstad heard about Kayla, he decided he would try to shorten their wait.

For several months, Ohnstad has been working on his Eagle Scout project — a blood and bone marrow drive to help find a match for Kayla. The drive will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, January 7th, at Kayla’s school, 6011 West 79th St. in Westchester.

Ohnstad said he is counting on the community’s generosity to both build the local blood supply and hopefully find a match for Kayla and others in need.

For bone marrow donation, only a mouth swab will be done on January 7th. The potential donors’ information will be put into a national database until they reach the age of 60. Potential bone marrow donors must be between the ages of 18 and 60.

Blood donors must be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds. Other qualifications will be checked at the scene of the drive, which is sponsored by the American Red Cross and the National Bone Marrow Donor Program.

To set up appointments, call Ohnstad directly at (310) 641-8005 or timerlandtree@sbcglob

FORMER LMU PRESIDENT PASSES AWAY — Father James N. Loughran, S.J., who was president of Loyola Marymount University (LMU) fromÝ1984 to 1991, died December 23rd from an accidental fall at his home. He was 66.

While at LMU, Loughran made a commitment to further LMU’s reputation as a strong academic institution. He directed considerable financial resources to academics and lowered the minimum course load for professors from four to three, freeing up faculty for research and other scholarly and creative pursuits. Loughran left LMU to return to the East Coast to care for his ailing father.

In addition to his leadership positions at LMU, Loughran served as acting president of Brooklyn College in 1992, interim president of Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmittsburg, Maryland, from 1993 to 1994, dean of Fordham College in New York and president of St. Peter’s College in Jersey City, New Jersey from 1995 until his death.

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y. on March 22nd, 1940, Loughran entered the Jesuit order at 18 and graduated from Fordham University in 1964. He also received his master’s degree and doctorate from Fordham.ÝHe was ordained a priest in 1970 and took final vows in 1978.

More information regarding Loughran is available on the St. Peter’s College Web site,

OTIS CONNECTS ART AND PLAYA VISTA — Otis College of Art and Design in association with The Friends of the Playa Vista Library will hold a public reception for the opening of an exhibition of student work, “Otis Connects: Playa Vista Re-imagined,” at 11 a.m. Saturday, January 20th, at the Playa Vista Library, 6200 Playa Vista Drive.

The work was developed in collaboration with Playa Vista and the newly launched Integrated Learning Program at Otis College, which pairs inter-disciplinary teams of students with community partners.

Early in the Otis class program, Tom Jones, Playa Vista’s vice president of planning, gave an overview lecture about the history and urban design concepts behind the Playa Vista community.

“I had the pleasure of having a small involvement early on with Jim Starrett’s class,” Jones said. “It was my understanding that Playa was to be the subject matter for a series of art expressions by the students.

“At the end of the semester we were then invited back to view the class results. I was blown away by the creativity and the quality of the artwork. It was wonderful and very inspirational to see aspects of the community through their eyes. I am so glad to have gotten to know our talented neighbors better.”

A free lecture will be given by Otis professor Jim Starrett on the process of the artwork’s creation and its context within the Playa Vista environment.

Refreshments will be served.