About the Author Steven Merrill Ulmen

Yours truly, Steven Merrill Ulmen, was born on January 1, 1946 to Walter George and Katherine Irene Ulmen in Mankato, MN. Walt and Kate were so poor that they had to time my birth so it occurred on New Years Day so that they got all the free gifts that came with the first New Years baby at that time. It worked! No tax deduction for 1945, however. Upon seeing me for the first time, Walt commented that with my long hands and fingers I would make a wonderful pick-pocket. I am the second of two sons. My older brother, Michael, resides in Seattle Washington and is retired.

I grew up in Mankato, Minnesota and graduated from Loyola High School in 1964. I would like to say that I graduated at the head of my class...I would like to say that, but I'm just not that big of a liar! I went on to attend Mankato State College from 1964 through 1968 because the alternative, going to work, did not appeal to me at the time. I eventually graduated with Bachelor of Arts degrees in Sociology and Psychology, and later returned to my alma mater where I received a Master of Science degree in Corrections in 1977.

After graduation with my undergraduate degree in December of 1968, I had nowhere to go and nothing to do so one day I decided to go downtown and get a haircut. After exiting the barber shop I ran into the father of a classmate of mine, who also happened to be a county commissioner for adjoining Nicollet county at the time. We engaged in conversation and I told him I was looking for a job as a probation officer since I had the appropriate degree and had passed the state exam. He commented that a PO job was opening up in LeSueur county, immediately north of Mankato. We then went our separate ways and I thought no more about it. The next day, he called me at home and said if I was really interested in the probation officer job in LeSueur county I should telephone the probation officer in Nicollet county who also was serving LeSueur county at the time. I did so, scored an interview with the LeSueur county Judge, and went to work as the first full time Juvenile Probation Officer for LeSueur county on January 15, 1969. I have remained in the field of corrections, in various capacities, from that day to the present, but can honestly say that if I hadn't gone downtown that day back in December of 1968 and gotten a haircut, heaven only knows what I would have ended up doing. (Maybe being a pick-pocket!) So it wasn't what I knew, it was who I knew, plus dumb luck and being in the right place at the right time, that dictated my future career. I have found this to be true for many of the twists and turns in my career since that time.

After securing this employment I was fortunate to meet Ida Mae (Mickie) Hall of Elysian, MN. After a long courtship, Mickie agreed to marry me which was, and remains to this day the best, thing that ever happened to me.We were wed on 9/11/71 in a small, rural church outside of Madison Lake, MN. Little did we know that thirty years later, to the day, we would be enroute to Nicollet MN to bury my deceased uncle and enroute, listened with horror as the radio told us of the destruction of the World Trade Center's twin towers by suicidal terrorists. At first we thought it was a hoax, like "War of the Worlds."

On April 3, 1974 our son, Matthew Steven, was born. He now lives in East Wenatchee, Washington with Angela Brown and her two children, Amanda and Matthew.

On January 5, 1977 our daughter, Laura Elizabeth, was born. She is employed by WCCO TV in Minneapolis, MN.

My wife, children, and in-laws have been instrumental in providing me with inspiration for my hobby of creative writing and indeed, to the creation of this website. To them go my heartfelt thanks. I hope you enjoy this site, that you see some of my work in print or maybe even on screen, and that you find it entertaining, for this is my goal. If you feel like dropping me an e-mail, I would enjoy hearing from you. Sincerely, Steven M. Ulmen.

Steven M. Ulmen is the author of two screenplays, one novel, a short story, and a short stage play or teleplay with a Christmas theme.These properties can be viewed in query and/or synopsis form on this website.

The author retired as Senior Probation Officer with DFO Community Corrections in November of 2003, ending a 34 year career in corrections. He resides in Rochester, Minnesota with Mickie, his wife of 31 years, and their beloved cat, Maggie, who actually is the head of the household. Rest assured that Maggie has personally reviewed and approved all additions to this website.

His son, Matthew, age 29, is this site's official webmaster. He keeps the domain name current, added the links and the Toby Ryker Trading Post, and adds regular updates to the text at the home page and the various links. He also installed the midi music. Angela designed one of the Wanted Posters for Toby Ryker and also the western backdrop to the Toby Ryker site as well as modified the graphic to add "Eagle Entertainment" to our current logo.

His daughter, Laura, age 26, was married to Paul Estby on March 22, 2003. They were married on board the Covington Inn, a riverboat which has been converted to a Bed and Breakfast. In September, Laura and Paul bought a historic home in Anoka, MN, which is a suburb of Minneapolis. Paul designed the other Wanted Poster as used at the Toby Ryker site and he and Laura provide technical assistance to the author on computer issues. The author confesses that he is computer illiterate!

UPDATE: 7/2/07 - Laura and Paul Estby presented us with our first grandchild, Sophia Pearl Estby, this date. She weighed in at 6 pounds and 12 ounces, and is healthy and doing fine.

Paul Estby, Laura Estby, Ida Ulmen and the author Steven Ulmen.

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