Full Name: Matthew James
Birthday: December 5, 1991 (Age 31)
Birthplace: Raleigh, North Carolina, United States
Relationship Status: Appears Single
Net Worth: Estimated $250,000
College: Wake Forest University, Economics Degree
Athletic Career: College Football, Signed with New Orleans Saints
Instagram: @mattjames919 (1.5 million followers)
Twitter: @mattjames919 (168K followers)
As an ardent fan who‘s followed Matt James since his college football days, I‘m thrilled the world now knows this phenomenal man‘s name. James made history as The Bachelor franchise‘s first Black male lead during its milestone 25th season. However, what captivates me most about Matt is his resilience, social conscience, and dedication to uplifting others. This beloved role model truly inspires me with how he lives his values.
Early Life and Football Dreams
Hailing from North Carolina, James was born on December 5th, 1991. While he exudes confidence today, childhood was often uncertain due to his father‘s absence. But Matt‘s incredible single mom Patty worked tirelessly to provide for him and his brother John.
Sports gave Matt‘s life much-needed structure. He became a star wide receiver at Sanderson High School, using his impressive 6‘5 frame to snag passes. His talent earned James a full scholarship to play for Wake Forest University – a dream realized!
As a Demon Deacon, Matt started building his reputation for sacrificing personal goals to better the team. Unfortunately during his first season, a torn ACL ended Matt‘s college football career. But he persevered to graduate with an economics degree, exemplifying his tenacity.
Career Pivot and Pursuing His Passions
After college, Matt James played briefly with the New Orleans Saints until being waived. Needing a fresh start, he moved to New York City and began working in corporate finance. However, Matt felt unfulfilled and returned to Wake Forest for his MBA.
Armed with more education, James found greater purpose in commercial real estate. He relished helping companies find workspaces meeting their needs at CBRE Group. But Matt yearned to also make a difference outside the boardroom.
This led him to play rugby with the NYAC men‘s team, challenging himself physically and mentally. James also started modeling, becoming one of New York‘s most eligible bachelors. Though enjoying these outlets, Matt still sought a more meaningful path…
Creating His Legacy Through Service
During a food tour of NYC neighborhoods in 2015, James learned about "food apartheid" plaguing underserved communities. Inspired to make a difference, he launched a nonprofit called ABC Food Tours in 2018.
ABC Food Tours provides culinary education and mentoring to youth in low-income areas. Through this initiative, James has helped over 1000 underprivileged kids gain access to nutrition and cooking skills. As a fan, I find his selfless commitment to improving young lives so admirable.
By creating ABC Food Tours, James blended his business acumen with his passion for coaching and empowering kids. Much like during his college football days, Matt felt called to be a nurturing mentor. This remains his true life‘s work.
Making History as The Bachelor‘s First Black Lead
In 2020, Matt James received an unexpected opportunity to be The Bachelor‘s lead for its 25th season after prior pick Matt White withdrew. My fellow fans and I were thrilled when our favorite under-the-radar star was cast!
While anxious about pressure to represent Black love stories, James embraced becoming the first Black male lead. During his televised journey, he fell for contestant Rachael Kirkconnell, though they eventually parted ways.
As Matt‘s fan, I respect how gracefully he handled scrutiny and used his platform to promote diversity. He even reunited with his estranged father on camera – further proving Matt‘s grace under fire. This historic season cemented James as an icon.
Continuing a Life of Service and Ambition
Post-Bachelor fame, James has grown his charity work and entertainment ventures:
- Expanded ABC Food Tours to 6 major cities, serving over 1000 youths
- Launched civic engagement platform A Starting Point with Chris Evans
- Works as spokesperson for GoodRx, Dress for Success, Calm, and more
- Signed with Hollywood talent agency CAA to pursue acting
- Hosts exclusive Bachelor Nation podcast "After the Final Rose"
- Remains devoted to family and mental health advocacy
Matt James impresses me constantly with his ambition and heart. While fame came unexpectedly, he‘s stayed true to his values. Matt is the rare celebrity who is even more lovable and inspiring off-screen!
Why Matt James Is So Endearing
As someone who considers herself Matt James‘ biggest fan, here is why I‘m so enamored by this phenomenal man:
- His devotion to philanthropy – James‘ nonprofit has helped over 1000 underprivileged kids gain culinary skills and mentoring
- Using his platform for good – Unafraid to speak out on race, politics, mental health, James elevates important conversations
- Family comes first – He remains close with his mom and brother, and even reconciled with his absentee dad
- Killer style – From suited up to casual, James always looks sharp thanks to his modeling experience
- Staying humble – Despite his many accolades, James is warm and down-to-earth in person
- Advocating wellness – From meditation to marathons, he makes self-care seem cool for men
Matt James beauty is more than skin deep. This man‘s inner light is just as radiant!
5 Fascinating Matt James Facts
Here are just a few of the intriguing things I‘ve learned about Matt James over the years:
- His grandfather was a WWII Tuskegee Airman – military service runs in the family!
- He backpacked through 12 European countries after graduating college
- Rugby player, marathon runner – the man loves competitive sports
- His first job out of college was consulting in Dallas, not NYC like many assume
- His favorite treat is chocolate chip cookies; he‘s a total sweet tooth!
Let me tell you, Matt James has no shortage of fun facts that make getting to know him an adventure!
I hope this piece has provided deeper insight into why Matt James is such a phenomenal human being. Beyond just his gorgeous looks and history-making Bachelor fame, James is remarkable for his resilience, service to others, and commitment to making an impact. His story continues inspiring me daily.
Matt proves that true leaders do so with their deeds, not just words. By creating his nonprofit ABC Food Tours, James quietly changed lives for the better year after year. He embodies the meaning of integrity through his actions.
While constantly making strides in entertainment, Matt James hasn‘t lost sight of who he is. This grounded, principled man remains his mother‘s son – the boy from North Carolina who dreamed of becoming someone who uplifts his community.
Matt James may be a rising star, but his light comes from within. That‘s what makes him a fan favorite, and forever my hero.