Although I was born in Washington, DC, I grew up in Redondo Beach, California, with my family of 9. I attended the University of California in Santa Barbara, where I met my husband Rick, who also works at UI in the history department. We have been married since 1983 and moved to Moscow in 1986. I taught at Moscow Junior High from 1988 until 2011, working in the English/Language Arts department, primarily teaching English and Drama. During that time I was also committed to working with NEA/IEA/MEA to strengthen the teaching profession. I have also served as Moscow School District’s Lead Peer Mentor for several years. I have two sons, Dmitri, a Marine currently serving overseas, and Angus, a student at Moscow High School.