Brendan Ploen is a native of Park Ridge, Illinois, located near Chicago.
He graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with a degree in journalism in May, 2018. Before moving to Durango, he spent two years at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel where he worked as an agate clerk in the sports department. In addition, at Marquette, he was the assistant sports editor for the Marquette Wire, the student media publication, where he covered basketball, soccer, lacrosse, track and field and cross country. He has won the Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence award as well as the Milwaukee Press Club's college-level awards for best sports story and online sports story. In his free time, he likes to go for hikes, travel and watch Marquette basketball and the Chicago Cubs.