As she awaits the near-inevitable denial of her appeal to the Ninth Circuit, after which she will get a new prison reporting date, Elizabeth Holmes is relaxing in San Diego, bonding with her newborn, and apparently trying to rehabilitate the public perception of herself.
Back in March, as Holmes's attorneys were filing last-ditch appeals and fending off criticism from prosecutors that she had booked a trip to Mexico for a couple weeks after her January 2022 fraud conviction, Holmes and partner Billy Evans welcomed a New York Times freelance reporter into their home for a couple of weeks. The resulting profile by writer Amy Chozick, published in the Sunday business section, is neither glowing nor wholly critical. But Chozick is careful to admit that while she was easily "taken... and taken in" by Holmes, who now mostly goes by "Liz," she knew that she could not, obviously, believe everything that Holmes told her, or take it at face value.
A friend of Holmes who requested anonymity, in fact, warned Chozick not to believe everything Holmes said. And Chozick said her editor, when she said over the phone that she found Holmes "gentle and charismatic," replied, "Amy Chozick, you got rolled!"
But, apparently, Holmes talks in her normal voice now, which is not the put-on deep voice of her Theranos past. And she has critiqued portrayals of her, like the Emmy-winning one by Amanda Seyfried in Hulu's The Dropout, saying, "They’re not playing me. They’re playing a character I created." And, hilariously, she now says, "Maybe people picked up on that not being authentic, since it wasn’t."
One has to feel bad for Evans, because whether you believe they are both head-over-heels in love with each other or that he and the two quickly-produced children are part of a deeply cynical ploy to keep her out of prison, he's still likely going to be stuck raising two kids on his own for the next decade — unless they let her out in five or six years.
Among the revelations in the piece, which is the first in which Holmes has spoken to a reporter willingly since 2016, we learn that her second child, a daughter born in February, is named Invicta "(Latin for 'invincible')". And when asked by Chozick whether Evans's wealthy hotelier family was footing the bill for any of Holmes's legal expenses, she shook her head no. Holmes said she would have to work the rest of her life to pay those bills — and it's unclear if her attorneys were working pro bono or being paid by someone or expecting to be paid at some point.
Also, it seems Holmes and Evans relocated fairly recently from that expensive rental in Woodside, where they lived during the trial, to a house by the beach in San Diego, which is where Evans's family is from. And, implying that they have moved to avoid stalkers or paparazzi or something, Evans reportedly told Chozick that he and Liz had "been chased out of residence after residence," and they never unpacked in case they were "found" and had to move again.
He relayed the story of meeting and falling immediately in love with Liz at the Fleet Week party of a friend (in the Marina, clearly) in 2017. He was 25 and she was 32. The two quickly moved in together and went to Burning Man in 2018 just as Theranos was in full collapse. And it was in early 2019, around the time her original trial date was being set, that Inside Edition spotted her walking her dog in the Marina, and the reporter said, "A lot of people think it was heartless that you were partying at Burning Man while your company was closing down."
Also, she hadn't totally dropped the deep voice at that point that she's now saying wasn't authentic — neighbors in her building at the time told Inside Edition they recognized her by the voice.
Holmes says that falling in love and getting pregnant when she did was all just a matter of "bad timing." And, she says, once in prison, she intends to keep developing healthcare inventions from behind bars.
Holmes's second-in-command, Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani, also tried appealing his conviction and sentence to the Ninth Circuit, but that was denied within weeks and he reported to the federal pen last month — coincidentally not far from where she is staying in San Diego.
Holmes is expected to serve her time a minimum-security facility in Bryan, Texas, starting a date still to be determined.
Photo: Former Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes alongside her boyfriend Billy Evans, walks back to her hotel following a hearing at the Robert E. Peckham U.S. Courthouse on March 17, 2023 in San Jose, California. Holmes appeared in court for a restitution hearing. (Photo by Philip Pacheco/Getty Images)