Chris Harrison Lake Highlands High School class of 1989

Chris Harrison’s name is now synonymous with roses and manufactured romance. As the host of “The Bachelor” and its female-focused spin-off, “The Bachelorette,” he has been traveling the world and breaking hearts since the series began in 2002. But before that, he was a Lake Highlands soccer player, the son of Mary Beth, a Realtor, and Steve, who previously worked at Ken’s Man Shop in Garland. He wanted to be a Dallas sportscaster before a wayward trip to California turned into the job of a lifetime.

Three things to know:

1) Harrison’s first hosting job was on the stage of Lake Highlands High School, where he explored his comedic chops as the emcee of the talent show.

2) He has a lot of heart for the contestants who are eliminated on the show. “It’s a great study in human behavior. After the girls are rejected and leave, I have a choice to go see them and say goodbye. If I have had a chance to get to know them a little, I usually say something to them,” he told the Advocate in 2003. “The best part is I always get to play the nice guy.”

3) In a very meta moment in 2013, Harrison presented a Webby Award to “Burning Love,” a Ben Stiller-produced web series that parodies his “Bachelor” franchise.