Dane Starbuck is an attorney, author, and speaker.
He loves telling stories
about remarkable people,
often the ones you have
never heard of.
Quite simply, Dane agrees with the noted short story writer Flannery O’Connor’s observation that stories are told because they “say something that can’t be said any other way.”
Dane’s stories tend to be about remarkable individuals who have somehow escaped the headlines and by-lines but who have, nonetheless, accomplished incredible things during their lives, leaving the world a better place.
They have tended to be “Midwesterners” because that is the geographical region Dane is most familiar with. But the qualities that these successful individuals have demonstrated and share--those of perseverance, integrity, vision, entrepreneurship, and compassion--are really America’s qualities.
Dane’s research into the lives of these Midwesterners has taken him all over the United States: from California to New York, North Dakota to Florida, Texas to Washington, D.C., Louisiana to Connecticut, and many states in between. In the process, he has interviewed and corresponded with hundreds of fascinating individuals to understand his subjects’ lives and the lives they have touched, everyone from Nobel Prize laureates, to governors, U.S. senators, federal judges, multi-millionaires, and CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.
But Dane has also learned much from interviewing just “ordinary people” about his subjects’ lives. His curiosity all began from his hometown in Winchester, Indiana, a small community of just 5,000 residents located in East Central, Indiana. Born in 1956, Dane benefited from the excellent local schools. He graduated from Winchester Community High School in 1975 having been President of the school’s chapter of the National Honor Society. As an athlete, he was a five-sport letter winner, and won state honors in basketball where he was elected to the first team Academic All-State Basketball team.
In 1978, Dane concluded his undergraduate studies at Huntington College in Huntington, Indiana, where he graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. degree in English and world history. From there Dane taught English literature and writing at Elmhurst High School in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He went on to earn an M.A. degree in English from Indiana University, an M.A. degree in English Literature from the University of Melbourne, Australia, law degrees from Oxford University and the Georgetown University Law Center, where he served on Georgetown’s law review.
During the course of the past 35 years, Dane has also held a number of positions: he worked on the U.S. Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee in Washington, D.C. where he served as a legislative assistant to former U.S. Senator Dan Coats; he clerked for U.S. Federal District Court Judge William C. Lee; and, he served as President & CEO of the Wishard Memorial Foundation, Inc., a foundation that supports one of the largest public healthcare networks in the country. For several years in the 1990s, Dane maintained a law practice in his hometown of Winchester. Since 2005 he has been a practicing attorney in Carmel, Indiana.
His interest in writing began in the 1970s when he first wrote for his high school’s newspaper. From there he edited his undergraduate college’s literary magazine, worked as a part-time reporter for the Huntington Herald-Press and the Indiana Daily Student, and served as an assistant editor of the Georgetown Law Journal. He has published four books, more than 30 articles in Midwest newspapers and magazines, and authored several chapters in other books.
In addition, he has spoken to more than 350 organizations, often about his research and writing. Dane has also served as an officer and director of several non-profit organizations and is currently a director of Liberty Fund, Inc, a Trustee of The Winchester Foundation, and a member of the Mont Pelerin Society and The Philadelphia Society. Through all of these experiences, he has maintained an active career as a writer.
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