Biography

I was born and raised in the town of Menlo Park, California on the San Francisco Peninsula and lived there from 1956 until my parents moved away in 1977. It was a wonderful childhood (with a stay-at-home mother) in a peaceful area that eventually became the hub of the Silicon Valley computer chip revolution. As early as First Grade, I could ride my bicycle two miles to school and beyond without the fear of my picture ending up on the back of a milk carton, stamped as “missing.” We were church-going folks and my mother read Bible stories to my brother and me at bedtime and it is from the home and church that my formative concepts of Christianity were set. I find it an assuring miracle that I never drifted far from them.

To keep my biography from becoming “War and Peace,” I’ll give you the interesting and necessary bits of my life. During my senior year at Woodside High School, I set a number of pass receiving records and all-star accolades while starting as Wide Receiver for the varsity football team. Four years after being awarded All Northern California football honors, I flew to Israel to work on the Lachish Archaeological Project during the summer months of 1977. For many reasons this was a seminal moment for me and I write briefly of it in my book, “A Carpenter’s View of the Bible.” I did not come back to my love of archaeology until I went back to school in 2000 at age 44. After earning an MA Biblical Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary, I began work on my doctorate in archaeology at the University of London. The project involved studying the ancient city in the Middle East during the late Roman Empire and its transition into the early Christian (early Byzantine) city. This vital and immensely important historical transition was to be approached from an architectural and religious point of view. Up until going back to school I had spent seventeen years as a carpenter/general contractor in the residential construction industry on the Central Coast of California. My PhD advisor thought this, with my Christian studies background would provide a fresh scholastic perspective to this important area of ancient history. In 2007 I completed my PhD Classics/Archaeology at Royal Holloway College, University of London. Since graduation I worked as a finish carpenter for several years, wrote several articles for scholastic journals, gave a paper at Oxford and saw my thesis published by the British Archaeological Review. I am currently publishing my writings while living on the San Francisco Peninsula. My book, “Your Voice Echoes Through, Gerasa of Jordan and the End of the Classical City” is my first book and is a product of my latent scholastic years.

I married my wife Cathy in 1979, a year after graduating with a business degree from the University of Oregon. We raised our children, Jennifer and Benjamin in Pacific Grove, California and they have gone their own ways to become truly wonderful people. It is difficult for Cathy and me to contain our pride in them. Cathy has sacrificed and hung in there with me during this time of personal transition and I look forward to see what the Lord has in store for us. I know marriage should theoretically be an equal matter of “give and take,” but I am deeply indebted to her for her sacrifices and patience.