James Raciti --About Me

I am a native of Philadelphia where I went to Girard College, Stephen Girard's legacy of a private preparatory school for fatherless boys and girls. I then attended Temple University.  I continued my education in Europe earning two Masters Degrees (English and French) at the University of Grenoble in France and a PhD in Comparative Literature at the University of Zaragoza, Spain.

I remained in Europe as an educator and administrator subsequently working for the University of Salamanca, the University of Barcelona, the University of Maryland’s European Division. Returning to the States, I became the Director of Education and Training for US Space Command and oversaw the worldwide Space Command Education Programs from Colorado Springs. During my tenure at Space Command, I attended and graduated from Harvard University's MLE ( Institute for Management and Leadership in Education) 1993. In 1998, I was awarded The Air Force Meritorious Service Medal at the time of my retirement from the Air Force.
Throughout my career, I have written in a number of different genres.  To date, I've written and had published four novels: Au Revoir à la France, Giacomo, Pulling No Ponchos:  An Irreverent History of Santa Fe and Legacy of War.   My non-fiction works include Ask About Santa Fe, Old Santa Fe, A Brief Review of History, Ask About Florida, and Carrabelle and Florida’s Forgotten Coast.

I also have three poetry collections, Charles, Dabs of Myself, and the recently released The Bird Chart Boy - which contains poems about my childhood at Girard. Rounding out my writings are two produced plays, Invitation to Dawn (Hemingway's last hours) and The Song of Roland. I also have two, as yet, unpublished  theater scripts Tallahassee by the Sea and Dialogs Beyond.

In 2014, I created a blog: Get to Know Stephen Girard.  It can be accessed at www.stephengirard.org. 

In 2016, I introduced a second blog: America's Revolutionary Voices at www.americasrevolutionaryvoices.org.

In September 2015, my book titled Stephen Girard:  America's Colonial Olympian, 1750-1831 was published by Sunstone Press, Santa Fe, NM.

I now spend my time between New Mexico and Colorado.

My Photo Gallery of the Past: 

My older brother Charles and me.

Class of 1951: Four members of the Girard Gym Team

1954 Army Induction Photo

Lifeguard Days with Alberta and brother Charles
1957 The Andrew Sisters at Club Bolero, Wildwood. NJ with me as MC, "Nick Darro" (above)

Nick Darro with Tony Bennett (below)

1969 Student Marshal at University of Maryland European Division Commencement, Heidelberg, Germany

My sons, Marc and Charles at our home in Formentera, Spain

James and Maryhelen Raciti

Contact Information:
Email:  giacomodarro@yahoo.com


  1. This is excellent. I do hope that you will finish the detail and accomplishments of our second fathers life. Keep up the good work.
    Hail Girard

  2. I was looking for a book about Stephen Girard to download here in the Philippines and came across your website. Great bio ! You are living testimony that there is life beyond the walls. What year did you graduate?

  3. If you send me your email address, I'll send you my graduation year. Thanks for your comment.

  4. Jim, great work! I'm proud to be a classmate.

  5. I posted elsewhere -- on your blog, I think --- regarding my father, Samuel Kagel, still living, class of '31. Would love to contact you directly. We question whether Stephen Girard and Ben Franklin ever met? Any hard evidence other than to assume that Girard was influenced by Franklin? My Dad wants to know if it was you who wrote a magazine piece about the two saying that 'Girard's philanthropy in death was what Franklin's was in his lifetime.'

    Fred Kagel