DeCell grew up writing for his parents’ weekly newspaper, the Deer Creek Pilot, in Rolling Fork, Mississippi, and went from there to Princeton University. He was the founding editor of Memphis magazine, which celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2006. He has also worked as a press and legislative aide on Capitol Hill and as editor-in-chief of Roll Call.
DeCell is coauthor of the book The Thirteen Keys to the Presidency. He and his wife have two grown children and live in DC’s Tenleytown neighborhood.