Stanley Wambugu grew up in the Laikipia District of central Kenya, in the arid town of Ol-jorok. His parents were smallholding farmers who raised maize, beans, goats, sheep, and cattle. He went to the rather limited primary school in his home town, but had the good fortune to travel to the larger town of Nanyuki for high school. This town, some 125 miles north of Nairobi, is near Mt. Kenya.