I am Detroit-born model, with a 1957 build date.

My family lived in Westland (suburban Detroit). When I was fifteen we moved to St. Petersburg, Florida.

In 1975, I graduated from St. Petersburg High School.

In the fall of 1978 (its scares me how long ago this seems), I moved to New York City to stake out a career as an architectural designer. 

After some spectacular misadventures, in 1985 I founded my own architectural design firm, and rode out the 1980s furiously creating custom-built apartments in one condominium tower after another. It was an exciting, creative, but ultimately exhausting time.

I left New York in 1991, and, after a real-estate development which imploded, I settled in Newport, RI, where I — somehow — became an environmental, urban planning, and transportation advocate known across the state.

The ramifications of the imploded real-estate development continued to haunt me, and by 1996 I finally lost everything. In April, I left Newport, with but a backpack, to wander America.

After various adventures including working on an organic farm, I rode a bicycle to Kansas where I settled into a quiet life surrounded by the largest remaining prairie in America, covering the gently rolling Flint Hills.

The years passed, I rebuilt my life, managed to get two books published, and worked to emotionally recover from the 1990s.

I also created a business restoring vintage lighting, and, through the wonder of the internet, my business, located in the middle of nowhere, reached a national audience. From the start the business thrived.

The success of the business forced a relocation to a structure large enough to house it, and my personal life, and in 2014 I purchased the historic Cross House in Emporia, KS, about fifteen miles east of where I have lived since 1996.

Me, through the ages:

1974. It’s true. I once had hair. Or, hair once had me.
1974. It’s true. I once had hair. Or, hair once had me.


1979. Just after moving to NYC.
1979. Just after moving to NYC.


Me. 2008. Really. This really is still me.
Me. 2008. Really. This really is still me.


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2015. I have been working out, eating WAY better, and taking a ton of vitamins. I am really pleased with the results. What do you think?


7 Responses to ABOUT

  1. Hi Ross,
    I have stumbled across your blog a number of times and have admired your beautifully restored fixtures on ebay for years (not knowing, of course, that it was you). Thought I send you a message because I feel a kind of kinship with your life’s trajectory and interests. Perhaps I will meet you someday.

    I too am a transplanted Michigander (Philadelphia now by way of Westland, then Farmington Hills), erstwhile architect, house restorer, and lover of antique lighting. My house is an Italianate twin that was built in 1861. I have ended up restoring a number of gas or gas style kerosene lights for the house . . . I had originally used reproduction gasoliers but have replaced those first fixtures one by one with true antique fixtures I have managed to find. . .

    I see you haven’t posted about the house in awhile . . . any new projects recently?

    • Hi Gregory,

      Nice to meet you!

      Oh, I wanna see images of your 1861 home!

      Also, I am confused by this: “I see you haven’t posted about the house in awhile…”

      I post almost daily. What is the date of the last post you are seeing?


  2. Thanks so much for the bio! I often wondered how you ended up in the Flint Hills! Cross House is progressing so beautifully and you have seemed to thrive on the creativity and love of the restoration! Continued good luck and I love following your blog! I am also glad for the recent posts about lighting and restoring some very beautiful pieces. I was very worried about your vintage lighting business. Best wishes on your continued great success!

  3. Looking at your last photo and how you are eating better and all that…could you share the new diet please?

    I want to turn back the years and get new DNA to look fabulous again!

    I remember those 70’s – back then everyone had big or long hair – I thought it was cool when I was growing up – we were very lucky indeed.

    We grew up with Barbie, with The Monkees, The Beatles, The Carpenters, The Jackson Five, and when we were really little we had the Twist and the mashed potato. All those crazy dances and then we got Barry White and The Supremes, and we even catched the eighties and danced to Madonna’s Vogue and We Can Dance, and we had the crazy fashions, the hippies, the minis and midis, HAIR and Pinball Wizard – then I don’t know – for me one day I woke up and the music was different and I didn’t like it.

    Suddenly I didn’t like Beyoncé dressing like a demonic entity or Eminem cursing foul mouth, or all those songs about death and suicide and I said to myself: am I lucky someone invented youtube? Go there and go back to the music you like!!! So we always can go back to that place that made us happy – even in our worst days – when the day is going bad – just start to sing THE morning after – and after a while you’ll be singing – its raining men alleluyah!!!! lol!!! Let someone else sing Chandelier…am singing: You are so vain…lol!!!

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