About

  image courtesy of Teachers College, Columbia University

image courtesy of Teachers College, Columbia University

I was reared on a farm in Western Oklahoma, not far from where The Black Alabaster Box takes place. My parents were farmers and school teachers. I am the middle child between two brothers. Growing up on a farm gave us many opportunities to explore and use our imaginations. We learned about hard work, success and failure, and caring for the world around us. 

Every summer my mother ordered a box of library books from the Oklahoma State Library Commission. It was always a great day when it came. As soon as we finished one box, she sent for another. Reading took us around the world.

I attended Grays Harbor College in Aberdeen Washington and The University of Washington, becoming a teacher. I taught just about all of the elementary school grades.

It was all valuable experience when I became a professor at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York. There I taught men and women who were studying to be teachers, school principals, and to work in education-related jobs.

Now I live in Baltimore, Maryland with my daughter, granddaughter, and two contentious cats. I like to garden, read, write, and go for long walks. I like to travel, too.  I’ve been lucky enough to work in England, Japan, China, Singapore, Afghanistan, Jordan, and Pakistan where I’ve met many teachers and some of the boys and girls they teach. I spent a summer in Zambia and traveled to Canada, Kenya, Egypt, Greece, Italy and Switzerland. What a wonderful world we live in!