Rita grew up running the beaches of a barrier island on Florida’s east coast. An island brat, she spent more time climbing weathered oaks and chasing alligators than playing with the dolls her family gave her. She married a Marine and feels fortunate to have lived many places and traveled to the states and countries she didn’t live. Leaving government service she moved back to that barrier island where she writes about Extraordinary Women weaving her experiences into her story telling. Her heroes and heroines are either in the military or government service because she writes what she knows. Her father was in the Coast Guard and immediate family members served in every branch of the service as desk jockeys, grunts, pilots and everything in between. She’s experienced the highs and lows of military and government life and is grateful for each experience.