Fashion Friday: Salus University Leadership
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Fashion Friday: Salus University Leadership

Brian and Dr. Mittelman

As Salus University’s general counsel and compliance officer, Brian Zuckerman, JD, thinks his workday attire can feel a bit repetitive. “I am a corporate lawyer who tends to dress more conservatively, and for me, the socks are and were an opportunity to show a little bit of individualism and put a ‘little bit of spring in my step’ if you will,” said Zuckerman, former chief of staff to Salus president Michael H. Mittelman, OD ‘80, MPH, MBA, FAAO, FACHE. “So, I started wearing them maybe 20 or 30 years ago just as a way to add a little bit of color in my day.”

The socks come in all patterns, colors, and designs. He also incorporates festive socks for the holidays into his wardrobe as well. 

“I joined the University about seven years ago and I guess the socks do what they intended to do, grab people's interest. Mike (Mittelman) happened to notice and decided to go ahead with the trend as well and I would say other people have noticed and made comments to me and Mike. It had gotten to the point where we would exchange small holiday gifts and our colleague had gotten both Mike and I socks as gifts.”

Dr. Mittelman and Johnny ArcherDr. Mittelman caught onto the trend after leaving the military. “In the military I had to wear a uniform. When I wore khakis, we had brown shoes. I had to wear brown socks. When I wore my white uniform, I could just wear plain white socks. When I wore my service dress blues, I could only wear black socks,” said Dr. Mittelman. “When I was able to dress in different colors, I thought I could wear different colorful socks.”

Dr. Mittelman said he tends to be a conservative dresser so the way he compensates for that is with colorful, loud socks. “It's a fun way to express myself, because people don't expect me to have fun, colorful things. I do that with my ties sometimes too, but it's more fun with the socks because they don't have to match everything.”

He got his sense of style from his father who was a haberdasher, a seller of men’s clothes, which included everything from suits, ties and even shoes. Dr. Mittelman has been able to take that sense of style into his role as Salus president, and has found a unique way to showcase it through his socks. 

Written by Nia O'Neil, Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School student intern