Dads in the Limelight – Frank McKinney

Our nineteenth Dad in the Limelight is Author and Real Estate Giant Frank McKinney (http://www.frank-mckinney.com/). I want to thank Frank for being a part of this series. It has been great getting to know him and now sharing him with all of you!

1) Tell me about yourself, (as well as how you are in the limelight for my readers knowledge)
My name is Frank McKinney, and I guess I am referred to by the media as the “daredevil real estate artist.” I am also a 5x bestselling author in three genres. When I am not writing, I create some of the most magnificent direct oceanfront homes in the world, each built on speculation (built without a buyer in mind). They sell for quite a bit of money. I also run a non-profit, the Caring House Project Foundation that provides a self-sustaining existence to the world’s most desperately poor and homeless, particularly in Haiti, where CHPF built 11 villages prior to the recent earthquake. For more visit: http://www.frank-mckinney.com/about_frank.aspx
2) Tell me about your family
I have been married for 20 years, and have one 11 year-old daughter Laura, that we refer to as Ppeekk (pronounced Peekie). We live in Delray Beach, Florida

3) What has been the largest challenge you have had in being a father?
Sometimes I think my daughter feels as though she has to compete with the media for my attention. What I do, both professionally and spiritually, happens to be unique and engaging to the public, and therefore high-profile to the media. I work hard to make sure Ppeekk knows she is the center of my universe.

4) What advice would you give to other fathers?

Walk you kids to school every now and then. I am most proud of the fact that I have walked my daughter to school every single school day of her life. That’s right, she is in 6th grade now, and we have been walking since she was 4 years old in pre-kindergarten. That’s over 1,200 walks! The special ties we have shared on those 1 mile walks will last a lifetime. I gathered so much material from our walks, as we walk through a tropical jungle, past a nature preserve, and over a drawbridge every day. All of that I turned into my first young reader fantasy novel; Dead Fred, Flying Lunchboxes, and the Good Luck Circle (http://www.dead-fred.com/).
5) Seeing that you (or your position) is in the limelight, how have you come to balance parenthood and outside life?
See above. Spending those 15 minutes with Ppeekk every school day and caused for our father/daughter relationship to grow in ways I could never have imagined. She knows she has Daddy’s undivided attention every day. There are no cell phones or Blackberrys, just dad and daughter.
6) What have you learned from the fathers that you have interacted with?
It is always a joy to include other dads on our walk to school. As a matter of fact, we allow all the children from Ppeekk’s school to walk with us on the first Friday of every month. Our record is 92 children and their parents, many of them fathers. Few knew the excitement and enlightenment until they have taken the “Dead Fred” walk to school with us.
7) What else would you share regarding your experiences as a father thus far?
I love being a dad more each day. Remember, they are only young for a short time. Enjoy it.

8) What have been the most memorable experiences that you have had thus far as a parent?
I has to be our 1,200 walks to school, by far!

If you have any questions for Frank, please leave a comment here and I will make sure that he gets them so that he may be able to respond!

Also, do you know a Dad in the Limelight? If so, please email me their contact information so that they too can be a part of this series!

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