Terry was born in 1945 and grew up in San Francisco’s Richmond District attending local public schools. In 1963, Terry joined the Air Force and was trained as an electronic technician. After leaving the military in 1967, he worked as a technician in the telecommunications industry and then put himself through college working in radio and television in the Bay Area. He graduated in 1976 from San Francisco State University with a degree in Broadcasting. Terry moved to LA where he worked as a video editor and computer animator in Hollywood. In the late 80’s he changed careers and began working as an instructional designer creating training programs for business. He also joined the graduate program in Educational Psychology at USC where he graduated with a Ph.D. in 1997. He continued working as an instructional designer, primarily with tech companies, until his retirement in 2012.