Tom Duesterhaus grew up in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., the sixth of eight children. He graduated from The College of William & Mary in 1995 with a B.A. in English, and received an M.A. in English from George Mason University in 2008. He began teaching in 1996, and in 1999 returned to his high school, Bishop O'Connell, where he continues to teach English and creative writing. Tom is also a member of the Youth Apostles Institute, a Catholic community of men that works with young people in parishes, college campuses, schools, and other settings. He lives in their community house in McLean, Virginia, and has made lifetime promises of poverty, chastity, and obedience.