Ryan was born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. But after a family trip to the Grand Canyon as a child, he became entranced with the Southwest and has now lived in Flagstaff for more than a decade and a half. Before joining the KNAU newsroom as local content manger, Ryan was the editor for the local weekly paper, Flag Live, for 10 years. The experience helped him become deeply embedded in the Flagstaff community. As a longtime local musician Ryan has performed, recorded and hit the road with several bands over the years. He can currently be seen playing regular gigs with the Voluntary String Band around Flagstaff and many other Southwestern live-music locales. Ryan also spends many hours riding his mountain bike on dusty trails attempting to keep up with his wife.