I’m the eldest of four children – yes, that’s me at my First Christmas with Dad and Mom – born to a father from Texas and a mother from Barcelona. I grew up in a small town in southern Pennsylvania, and attended the local Catholic schools. I went on to earn my undergraduate degree at Georgetown, my J.D. at Notre Dame, and my Master’s at Sotheby’s in London. Since 2002 I have lived and worked in Washington, D.C.
My experience with media continues to grow, and over the past few years I have been lucky enough to gain experience in blogging, social media, podcasting, videocasting, television, and public speaking. In 2008 I began my primary blog, the “Blog of the Courtier”, where I write about about cultural and societal topics several days a week. The following year, I began a side project called “Catholic Barcelona”, which has eighty separate entries about the city of Barcelona’s historic churches, monasteries, and chapels, in English, which has been a resource for many people around the world visiting that city. And in 2012, I became a co-host of the weekly “Catholic Weekend” show on SQPN, the Star Quest Production Network, discussing news of the day and everyday life from a Catholic perspective.
In 2013 I appeared on international television for the first time, as a panelist on BBC World News discussing the election of Pope Francis. I was invited to live-tweet the Media Research Center’s annual William F. Buckley Awards Gala here in Washington, and hosted the closing panel discussion of the annual Catholic New Media Conference, which was held in Boston this past year. And by way of complete contrast, I was also voted #11 in the “Top 20 Sexiest Men in Conservative New Media” for 2013 by a panel of prominent conservative female journalists and activists.
So far in 2014, in February I was honored to be asked to live-tweet the annual Red White and Blue Gala here in Washington, on behalf of the evening’s hosts the American Principles Project. After two years on the air, I decided after much reflection to step down as a co-host of the Catholic Weekend show to pursue other projects. I remain close and grateful to the people at SQPN for both giving me a shot, and having taught me so much.
In March, I was contacted by the Delegation of the Catalan Government to the United States, asking me to help them promote the visit of the Escolania boys’ choir from the Abbey of Montserrat in Catalonia, Spain to the United States, which I did both through blog posts and on Twitter. The event was a huge success, and I even got to sit and chat with the Spanish Ambassador during the concert. And for the fourth time since I started blogging with them, the editors at WordPress selected one of my blog posts to feature on their “Freshly Pressed” page, as being particularly worth reading and sharing.
In late March, I designed the initial fundraising campaign for Friends of Little Portion Hermitage, which is trying to establish a permanent Franciscan hermitage in the Diocese of Portland, Maine. I was invited to sit on their board last year as the group was formed, and we’re now working on raising money to find a permanent home for Franciscan hermit Brother Rex Anthony Norris and his future successors in the hermitage. We began in early April following Brother Rex’ appearance on EWTN’s “The Journey Home” show, and have followed up by creating social media sites, scheduling Catholic radio appearances, and soliciting well-known Catholic writers to contribute guest blog posts to the FLPH site in the hope of driving greater traffic to the effort.
In April 2014 I was approached by Random House publishers’ Image imprint, asking if I would do a book review and help promote a book-signing event by one of their authors, EWTN personality Colleen Carroll Campbell, which took place later that month. Since then, Random House subsequently asked me to be part of a “blog tour” reviewing and promoting a new book by another EWTN personality, Dr. Scott Hahn, in June. Also in June, Sophia Institute Press asked me to review and help promote a new book on developing Catholic spirituality in the home by artist David Clayton and blogger Leila Lawler.
What will the second half of the year bring? Well later in June I will be reviewing another book for Image/Random House, this time by well-known Catholic apologist and broadcaster Patrick Madrid. The legendary Decca classic music label has asked me to review and help promote a new classical music album by a popular operatic group geared toward a younger adult audience. And sometime this summer, if current figures hold, I should hit my one millionth reader for the year on Blog of the Courtier, my daily blog.