discoveries magazine

What's In Your Office: Evan Zahn, MD

When he isn’t performing pioneering procedures on some of Cedars-Sinai’s tiniest and most vulnerable patients, interventional cardiologist Evan Zahn, MD, might be found on a medical mission in Tanzania, lecturing in China or conducting research in Ireland. His family helps ground Zahn, director of the Guerin Family Congenital Heart Program at the Smidt Heart Institute. Here, he offers Discoveries a glimpse into his inner sanctum in the Advanced Health Sciences Pavilion, shares treasures from his travels—and explains his admiration for Ron Burgundy.

Ron Burgundy bust

1. Zahn and several colleagues from around the country share an affinity for Ron Burgundy—Will Ferrell’s iconic character. “We think Anchorman is a monumental movie,” Zahn says. “As a running joke, we give each other little gifts, like this bust.”

Caricature of Dr. Zahn with patient Cheryl Davis

2. Animation lighting artist Cheryl Davis was the world’s first patient to receive an implantable device to repair congenital heart defects without open surgery, with Zahn as her surgeon. As a thank-you, she had world-renowned Disney animator John Musker draw this caricature of her and Zahn.

3D printed heart

3. Today’s 3D printing technology allows Zahn and his team to practice surgeries on exact replicas of patients’ hearts before the actual procedures.

Cowhide shield and spears from South Africa

4. Bringing this cowhide shield and spears—made by the Maasai people—home to Los Angeles was “an event,” recalls Zahn, who received the gift following a presentation in South Africa.

Photo of the Golden Gate bridge under construction

5. A photo of the Golden Gate Bridge under construction provides a daily reminder of the importance of building relationships.

Iron Man awards

6. A former endurance athlete, Zahn no longer participates in Iron Man challenges, but this memory of his 2011 feat spurs him through long days of surgery.

Russian military hat

7. Shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Zahn—then a U.S. Air Force major—swapped hats with a major in the Russian military on a mission trip to St. Petersburg.