Dan is an awesome individual. Not only does he humbly put up with all of our “old man” jokes (which are thrown at him on a daily basis), but he truly has a kind heart. I think a lot of it stems from his years of experience working in the nonprofit space, but I also believe it has a lot to do with his lack of ability to say “no.” You read that right. Whenever an organization asks him for advice, or to sit on their board, volunteer for their event, cater for their event (or even be their DJ!), he always says yes. Which, I’ll be the first to admit, is not easy to do. But that’s just the kind of individual the rest of us here at Aplos have the privilege of sharing our day with. So, take a few minutes out of your busy day to read a little more about this wonderful man!
Tell us something we don’t know about you.
When I was 18, I had an opportunity to travel parts of the world for 10 weeks. During that trip, I stayed in a Maasai village outside of Kenya for 5 days. I literally lived in a dung-made hut with an African family and some of the children had never seen white skin before. It was a life-changing experience for me.
Before you became a fundraising guru, what were your career aspirations?
I really wanted to become a recording sound engineer. I loved seeing how music is made and wanted to work with bands mixing music.
If you have one regret in life, what is it?
I honestly have no regrets. I feel that I have been blessed with an amazing wife and kids who put up with me, and amazing friends and co-workers over the years.
What are your top three favorite hobbies? Why?
Cooking, because food makes people happy and I love it when people are gathered around a table having conversations and eating homemade food.
Cycling, because it is so peaceful, and the way in which you can see certain places on a bike is so different then from a car. Cycling is physically challenging but rewarding in how you can view the places you ride, especially some of the back roads that are in the central valley.
Lastly, golf. I am terrible at it, but I love being outdoors and it is a great game to play with friends. Golf intrigues me because you can always get better – unlike some other sports, there is always room for improvement or a better score.
Being a lover of music, about how many concerts do you think you’ve attended over the years?
I attended my first concert when I was in 6th grade, and in my teens and early 20’s I went to a tons of shows. I would say I have been to over 200 concerts. I have seen certain bands many times. I really enjoy concerts and the diversity they bring with so many different people who come together to share a love for music.
Who are your top 10 favorite bands/musicians of all time?
This is the hardest question so far. U2, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Matthews Band, Van Morrison, Alicia Keys, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Pearl Jam, Joss Stone, David Gray, John Mayer, & Led Zeppelin. (ok that’s 11)
If you could play any instruments AND with any band, what would your choices be?
I always wish I could play piano/keyboard, and playing in the E Street band would be amazing.
Ok, there’s a table. On this table there is a glass of your favorite Malbec wine, a slow roasted rib eye steak coated in butter and herbs, AND a massive slice of cheesecake with cherries on top. What do you grab first?
I would start with the Malbec first – good wine opens up the pallet and taste buds for what is next.
If you could go anywhere in the world right this second, no strings attached, where would you go?
Kauai. I love the beauty, people, and the vibe of the entire island.
Is there anywhere in the world you are dying to visit? Why?
My wife and I would love to visit Ireland, England, and Scotland. I love the faith and grit of Irish people, the whisky of Scotland, and my wife has heritage from England, so visiting those three countries would be really fun. I should also say that lots of my favorite bands of all time come from Ireland.
What are your top three fears in life? Why?
I am terrified of snakes because I don’t trust them and the devil in the bible was a snake. I fear not ending well, meaning getting Alzheimer’s or some other awful form of dementia at an old age. I am afraid of what condition the world will be left in when my kids have kids. My hope is the the world is a better place for the generations ahead.
Looking back on your years of being a dad, what are you top five favorite moments?
1 — Christmas with kids has always been a favorite. I did not like Christmas before having kids but they were always a great reminder of the magic and spirit of the season. There is nothing like watching a small child open a present on Christmas morning, and it does not have to be expensive or fancy.
2 — Reading with my kids and when kids learn to read and want to read to you is really fun/memorable.
3 — Playing practical jokes and laughing till you are crying over a joke or prank has always been a highlight.
4 — When your kids say “I Love You Dad,” roll sappy music, it melts my heart.
5 — Watching them see or experience something amazing for the first time in person.