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I’m Bob Vila.
I’ve spent my career helping people upgrade their homes and improve their lives.
You probably know me from TV, where for nearly 30 years I hosted a variety of shows – This Old House, Bob Vila’s Home Again, Bob Vila, and Restore America with Bob Vila. You can now watch my full TV episodes online. Oh, and let’s not forget my cameo appearances on Tim Allen’s sit com, Home Improvement, where I got to star as myself. That was something else!
Before my life in broadcasting, I launched my own residential remodeling and design business. Earlier still, I served as a Peace Corps volunteer, building houses and communities in Panama. I learned first-hand about home building from my father, who hand built our family home. I’ve written 12 books about remodeling your home, buying your dream home, and visiting historic homes across America. It’s fair to say that buildings, especially homes, are my life’s work.
Now I’m breaking new ground on the Web. With Bob Vila Academy, I'm stepping out of the spotlight and letting some very special real-life DIYers take the stage. In a series of exclusive video e-courses, these experts teach online classes that will guide you through the process of building incredible projects, and impart lifelong skills in the process. I’ve always believed that a little sweat equity goes a long way toward making a house a home, and that's exactly what my new program helps homeowners do.
I'm often on the move but mostly I can be found at home in Florida – I'm a native – or in Massachusetts in the summer months and often in New York where our Web team is based. At the University of Florida back in the '60's I studied journalism, and later in Boston, architecture.
Over the years I've supported many causes dealing with housing and architectural preservation. I've been actively involved with Habitat for Humanity and helped them blitz build a house in Yonkers, NY, which we put on TV. I worked for years with the National Alliance to End Homelessness, supporting the work of many organizations throughout the country. In the last several years I've been helping out with the restoration of Ernest Hemingway’s home and collections at Finca Vigía near Havana, Cuba. This place was his home from 1939 until his death and he left it to the Cuban people to be run as a museum. This project has allowed me to visit my parents' homeland several times.
But we all know my physical whereabouts aren’t where it’s at – you can connect with me on my own site and on Twitter. I look forward to the conversation and to getting to know you.
You’re standing at the virtual site of my latest renovation project.
Come on over and say hello,