Lin Warfel grew up on a farm in east central Illinois. He went to Wabash College before transferring to the University of Illinois to study Agriculture and then had a stint in the air force, before he returned to farming. He later became a trustee for Parkland College, a Community College in Champaign, Illinois. He has served on his local Unit 7 School Board, was active in the CHIEF initiative (Change How Illinois Education is Funded) and in a movement to advocate for a one percent sales tax. In 1991, he was elected to the Board of Trustees of Parkland College. At the time of the interview he still continued to serve as a trustee.