It’s been 20 years since the formation of the National At Home Dad Network’s annual convention. To celebrate this milestone we will be counting down to our convention in Raleigh by featuring past and present attendees, who will share why this gathering of modern fathers is so important.
It’s week number eight, counting down to the convention and we are getting excited about our Road to Raleigh. The next seven weeks we will feature dads who have attended multiple conventions from year to year and find out how important attending the convention has been to them and their families. Find out how these dads found the National At Home Dad Network and how our advocacy, community, support, and education has helped them along the way.
1. Who is in your house? Tell us about your spouse, kids etc.
I have been married to Anne since ’93. She has worked in the property management business for 25 years. 3 kids: Mary, 18, is will be a sophomore at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Ne and competes on the Prairie Wolves Track and Field team. Thomas, 13, enjoys football, music (drums & guitar), and magic. TJ, 11, likes football and Minecraft.
2. How long were you, or have been a stay at home dad?
I began as a stay at home dad in January 2000. I still am the primary caregiver, but have been expanding my cleaning service (Andrew Cleaning Service) as the kids have grown older.
3. What city/ cities and year(s) did you attend the convention?
Chicago 03,04,05; Kansas City 06,07; Sacremento 08; Omaha 09,10 (Chair of convention), 13 Denver
4. What is your best memory from a convention that you attended?
I have so many great memories, so it’s difficult to pick one. I would say that meeting Hogan Hilling on the Friday morning of my first convention in Chicago was very important. We had breakfast and then spent the morning at the Shedd Aquarium with about six other dads…..Hogan went out of his way to make me feel comfortable and welcome in the group. We then met more dads in the River North area for lunch and then a gathering in a hotel suite. It was my first chance to hang out with other dads in my situation and was a life changing experience. Hogan was always there to make sure I was taken care of and he remains a great friend.
5. Why should someone attend the convention?
The convention is such an interesting event. I believe that every dad that attends will get so many positive things out of attending. You are welcomed into a group that is supportive and is wearing your shoes. The caliber of men that I have met through the convention is quite remarkable. You will surround yourself with guys who “get it”, like you do. The speakers, sessions, and discussion groups will give you a chance to learn and grow as a father. Through my work in planning this event, I have read hundreds of post convention surveys. I don’t recall one dad who regretted attending. Many describe it as a life changing event….and I agree.