Note: This will be the first of a series of posts regarding my run for Clinton City Council in November. If you want to follow updates on my campaign, please feel free to Like my campaign page on Facebook for follow me on Twitter.
I was born in Provo, Utah, the third (of six) children to Ronald and Stella Eberhard. When I was a little over two years old, my family moved to West Valley City, where I grew up and consider my hometown. I had a pretty typical middle-class childhood for a person of my generation, participating in Little League, playing in the school band, and generally just staying out of trouble. I attended the local public schools – Whittier Elementary, Hunter Junior, and Hunter High – from which I graduated in 1999.
I was an above average student in high school, and briefly considered joining the Army immediately after graduation to “see the world” (and drive tanks). Instead, I decided to attend Weber State University to study accounting, switching over to political science when I did poorly in an accounting pre-requisite course. However, the pull of the Army was too great, and I ultimately decided to join the Army Reserve in 2000, enlisting as a Paralegal Specialist (I once wanted to go to law school) in August with plans of completing initial training the following summer. I also decided that I would be moving to Connecticut upon the completion of training for personal reasons.
I completed my military training in the early fall of 2001, and settled in Connecticut awaiting the next school semester to start. When I returned to school – this time at the University of Connecticut – I studied political science, eventually graduating with a bachelor’s degree in May 2005. I worked full-time in support of my Reserve unit, mainly in personnel and training, and lived my life. My reason for moving to Connecticut eventually came to an end, and I started making preparations to return to Utah in the fall of 2008. As I was making final arrangements, however, my Reserve unit was alerted for deployment to Iraq, so I decided to stay in Connecticut a bit longer to accompany my friends on the deployment.
The plan was to use a deployment to Iraq to get myself in shape to stay in the Army longer, thus allowing me to maintain my civilian job. However, this didn’t really happen, and I instead decided to leave the Army, receiving an Honorable discharge in February 2011. Because my civilian job required enlistment in the Reserves, I eventually lost my job and continued to look for work, in Connecticut, Utah, and elsewhere. I was also completing my second bachelor’s degree, this time in accounting (completed July 2011 from Post University), to hopefully help find a new job. After looking for nearly six months, I called home on Mother’s Day and told my mom I was moving back to Utah sooner rather than later. This move would be delayed by an unexpected job offer a few days later.
After developing an interest in stocks and investing while on deployment (there’s a whole lot of downtime), I had applied for an internship at The Motley Fool, a financial advice website. I wasn’t selected for the internship, but I was invited to apply for their Writer’s Development Program, which landed me a six month position in Alexandria, Virginia. I delayed my move back to Utah to head down to Virginia, learned how to be a financial writer, and became a freelance writer for the Fool. I finally moved back to Utah in January 2012, settling in with my parents in West Valley City again.
I wrote for the Fool, worked as an accountant for a bit, but ultimately decided to go back to school again to use my GI Bill and enhance my financial education, with plans on becoming a financial planner. I applied at a few different schools – University of Utah, Purdue University, University of Maryland, and the University of Illinois – that had a master’s degree in finance and a program that was around a year long. I eventually settled on the University of Illinois in Champaign, and started school in May 2013. (Before I left though, my brother and I when on a road trip around the country, which I documented here if you want to read about that.)
I moved to Illinois, planning on finishing my degree and landing a fancy finance job up in Chicago. That didn’t work out for whatever reason, and I decided to move back to Utah. I also met the person that would eventually become my wife while in Illinois, so while the Chicago thing didn’t necessarily work itself out, she made the trip very worthwhile. I graduated with a masters of science in finance degree from one of the top programs in the country in May 2014 and returned to Utah to seek a job in finance at home, settling in Clinton.
I was lucky enough to have a housing option in Clinton, and I started to look for work in accounting or finance. I was also considering seeking my CPA license, but my education didn’t quite meet the criteria, so I returned to school yet again, this time for a master’s degree in accounting. In May 2015, my wife and I welcomed our son Lincoln into our family. He was born 10 weeks early, but he has grown into a strong and rambunctious toddler, definitely giving us a crash course in the “Terrible Twos.”
I continued to look for work, I worked various temporary and intern positions, until I finally landed a permanent position with the Bureau of Land Management in West Valley City. The commute was a bit much, and I continued to apply for jobs in the Clinton area, finally landing a position with the Air Force on Hill Air Force Base in July 2016, where I have been ever since. I also completed my master’s in accounting in May 2017, though my job with the Air Force have probably put my plans of becoming a CPA on hold.
With some luck, I should be able to stay at Hill for some time, and I plan on remaining in Clinton for as long as I can. The past three years in Clinton have been the happiest time of my life and I hope to raise my son here and continue to enjoy the community. I hope this post help explains a bit of my background, but feel free to ask any questions you might have. Tomorrow, I’ll cover some of the reasons that led me to run for Clinton City Council this year.
Until next time…