I was born in Panama City, Florida.  My father was a career Navy man and as a result I spent the first15 years of my life moving from duty station to duty station.  I have lived in Florida, Mississippi, South Carolina, Wisconsin, California, and Louisiana. I currently live in Southern Illinois.

I graduated from Vicksburg High School in Vicksburg, MS and then immediately enrolled in the Croft Institute for International Studies at the University of Mississippi.  While in college I picked up Spanish as a second language and was fortunate enough to travel to some interesting places in the world.  I studied for one summer semester in Mexico and a full semester in Lima, Peru.  I graduated with a B.A. in International Studies in May of 2002. I subsequently spent a year in London, England taking master level courses at the University of London. 

After returning from England, I taught Spanish at a Catholic High School in Mereaux, Louisiana for two years. During that time I was the head coach of the boys varsity bowling team and for the last year I was also the assistant athletic director.  In June 2005, I moved to St. Louis.