I was born and raised Seventh-day Adventist (SDA). I lived 5 years in southwestern Michigan. We moved to Union Springs, NY, where my Dad worked for the Seventh-day Adventist secondary school, Union Spring Academy. I went 7 years to the affiliated church school. We moved to New Braintree, MA; my Dad was on the faculty of Pioneer Valley Academy. I went 1 year to the affiliated church school and 4 years at the Academy. I graduated in 1975.
I went the SDA college in South Lancaster, MA, Atlantic Union College. I graduated in 1979, with majors in English and Religion, and a minor in Biblical Languages. The idea was to teach English and Religion in SDA secondary school. Unfortunately, I did not learn (though I should have) that I had no aptitude for dealing with young people or Education classes. I went to Andrews University (another SDA school) in Berrien Springs, MI. I started a Masters of Arts and Teaching (MAT) degree, but changed it to a regular MA in English. I finished class work in 2 years, but did not get the papers written and graduate until 1986. By 1982, I ceased to consider myself a Seventh-day Adventist. In 1985, I got married to Margaret Luking.
I worked nearly 6 years at a furniture factory affiliated with the SDA secondary school, Indiana Academy in Cicero, IN. In May, 1987, I got a job at the Indiana State Library in Indianapolis. I got my Masters of Library Science and became a genealogy librarian in 1995. I developed specialties in genealogy, Indiana history, and Indiana newspapers. I worked for the Indiana State Library until March, 2007. I am now between jobs.