Book titled 'The Dad Advice Project' shares wisdom from dozens of fathers

ByMike Marza WABC logo
Sunday, June 20, 2021
New book lends wisdon to dads, from dads
A father has created an inspiring book aimed at providing advice on parenthood through letters from fellow dads.

NEW YORK -- A father has created an inspiring book aimed at providing advice on parenthood through letters from fellow dads.

When father of three, Craig Kessler, asked his friends to write him advice letters about being a father, the response was overwhelming.

More than 40 submitted essays sharing their mistakes, tips and joys of being a father.

Kessler, the Chiefs Operating Officer at TopGolf, realized he had hit a "hole in one." He compiled the passages into his new book titled, "The Dad Advice Project."

"I hope people walk away realizing it's ok to make mistakes," he explained.

The book is organized with advice from dads, with the oldest children first, all the way to fathers with young kids.

The list includes professional baseball players, lawyers, executives and former CIA Director George Tenet.

He writes:

"Fatherhood is not easy, and none of us are perfect. We learn, with our children beside us, how to get better. If we are self-aware, curious, listen carefully, and focus on being relentlessly kind to everyone, we get better. Sometimes we are all those things to others, yet we fail to apply the same values to those we love the most: our children. Our children change and grow with exponential speed. Our responsibility is to keep up with them in an effort to understand and guide them."

Amit Jhawar is the former head of Venmo, but at home he's 7-year-old Devon's dad.

"I hope he says I was a loving father who was involved in his life," he said.

Jhawar writes:

"Fatherhood is the single best thing that has ever happened to me and nothing will ever compare. But it has not always been obvious in real-time. The individual moments are as taxing, tiring, and as patience-testing as anything you will ever face in life. Only when zooming out like a photomosaic, where each picture is a still in time, do you see the grander image and become overwhelmed by the rewards of the journey and moved by the deep nostalgia of great times of the past."

With three kids under 6, attorney Michael Glick, has learned logic at home is now often out of order.

"We try to make sure the little one isn't eating too many live cicadas on the front lawn these days," joked Glick.

He writes about the importance of being present and patient.

"It can at times seem that every day-every hour -- is a battle. But I promise it is worth it. For every struggle to get my 4-year-old to put on her sneakers for school, there is an evening recap when she tells me about her day as I listen in awe."

Dads of different walks and stages of life shared successes and fears.

"The reality is I'm raising two brown girls in a world that is mostly non-brown," Fred Perpall said.

CEO Fred Perpall runs a commercial construction company in Dallas while also trying to build a more inclusive society for his two teenage daughters.

"We have to live a life that demonstrates to our kids this is the America we believe in we know we are better when we are together," he said.

He encourages fathers to lead by example.

"The purpose of parenting, the true purpose is to make our kids useful to make them productive," Perpall said.

Time is a common thread in "The Dad Advice Project."

Greg Kassanoff's triplets are now 19. He misses those chaotic mornings driving them to school.

"It goes by incredibly fast. Don't be afraid to embarrass them, kiss them, hug them. Make the most of those moments because before you know it, they are out of the house."

A reminder, that even though the days can be long, the years are short.