Daniel was born and raised in Illinois. He studied art in college and graduated from Illinois State University with a B.S. in Art in 1971. In 1972 he became a born-again disciple of Jesus (Yeshua) after reading through the Bible. He married his wife Teresa in 1975, and 9 months later they went to Israel and worked for a year as house parents at Jewish Voice Broadcast youth centers in Jerusalem and Nahariyah. Daniel and Teresa spent a little over 2 years in Israel. They studied Hebrew, worked on the archeological dig on the Temple Mount, worked on a kibbutz, and took groups of young people from their home congregation for 6-months stays in Israel.