I was born in California (Whittier) in 1961. We lived in California for the first four years of my life. We then moved to northern Utah (Brigham City) when I was 5 years old. All my formative years, I lived in Brigham City. I attended Box Elder High School then went to Brigham Young University.
After a semester at BYU, I served a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Oslo Norway Mission. I then returned to BYU and completed a Bachelor's degree in Accounting. While completing my BS degree, I worked at Timpanogas Mental Health Center (now Wasatch Mental Health). As a result, I developed an interest in psychology and decided to pursue a graduate degree in clinical psychology. I picked up some prerequisite undergraduate courses and later entered the doctoral program in clinical psychology at Brigham Young University in September 1985. My dissertation was an investigation of outcome measurement in agoraphobia research. Mike Lambert served as my mentor and dissertation advisor. After completing a one-year clinical internship at the Indiana University Medical School, I received my Ph.D. in August of 1990.
While on my internship, I applied for several faculty positions and accepted a position at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio in September of 1990. I worked at Ohio University serving as an faculty member and later administrator for 21 years. In July 2011, I accepted a position at my alma mater, Brigham Young University as the dean of the College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences and Professor of Psychology where I am currently employed.