Daniel is a native Californian, born in Long Beach and raised in Glendora, and actually began taking German only because the French class he wanted to take in high school was full. However, after his family hosted three high school exchange students with the German-American Partnership Program and he himself spent parts of his sophomore and junior years in Goslar, Germany, with GAPP as well, he knew the German language and culture would be his career and vocation. Thus began a lifelong love affair with all things German (and German-American) as an exchange student, researcher, Honors and German faculty member at two universities, Bundestag Internship Program participant, and now Director of the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) for Young Professionals. Daniel’s academic background, mostly related to the study of German at all levels, is quite extensive and is available upon request.
Although Daniel would be interested in assisting in whatever projects the Board is interested in pursuing, he has two projects in mind. One is an online exhibit commemorating the history and influential alumni of the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Program (both high school and young professionals) since 1986, and an online microsite cataloging American public and university libraries’ German book collections. Furthermore, Daniel’s grant-seeking and grant-writing experience to help fund projects anticipated by GAHF should be invaluable.
Daniel is married to Michelle (Renn) Villanueva, the one, admittedly, of actual German descent in the family, and they will celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary in December 2020. Michelle is an attorney, an administrator with the NV Board of Regents, and a published poet. Daniel and Michelle, both Episcopalians active in their church, do not have any children but are “parents” of one very energetic cat. Mutual hobbies include gardening and travel abroad, and he is looking forward to working closely with GAHF if elected to the Board.