Born and raised in Blacksburg, Lance attended Virginia Tech, double majoring in American History and Secondary Education and also running on the cross country team (4:12 mile!). He then earned a Masters in American History from Oklahoma State, focusing on the American West and Native American studies. He returned to Virginia to work on his PhD at UVA. After finishing his coursework in American Colonial and Revolutionary history, he found his true passion: teaching. After teaching for 35 years at Albemarle High School, where he helped develop the American Studies program, taught AP US History, and coached cross country and track. He joined the CDS team in 2018 teaching middle school social studies and coaching cross country.