Dr. Richard Saccone was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He earned his academic degrees from Weber State University (B.S.), Naval Postgraduate School (M.A.), and University of Oklahoma (M.P.A.), and the University of Pittsburgh (Ph.D.).
He first came to Korea in 1978 and has lived in both North and South Korea, on and off, over fourteen years. He became deeply interested in the history and culture and has spent significant time traveling, observing and studying Korea in connection with the research for this and his other books. Over the years, he appeared regularly on television, radio, and also wrote a weekly travel column.