Ann considers the White Family to be her family - she loves the members of this family and credits her values and beliefs to these people - even though she recognizes that she shares no genetic material with their pedigrees,
|The Happy White Family at Home, 1958 (Ann, Rossie, Dick, Martin)|
One of Ann's earliest memories was of her mother showing her how to write her name. She was a toddler, and the act symbolized her mother's emphasis on education above all other goals in life. She recalls her mother telling her she could be anything in life, even the President of the United States, and if she wanted to attend Harvard, that would be possible.
|Multi-Family, Multi-Generational Portrait: Whitfield, White, Cannon, Raulerson|
Ann was brought up as a Catholic and attended parochial grade school and high school in Jacksonville, FL, graduating in 1970 and immediately entering the local junior college. She graduated two years later and moved to Gainesville, FL, where she majored in Journalism at the University of Florida. The freedom away from her parents for the first time in her life was unmanageable and after two years of sporadic attendance, Ann dropped out and returned to Jacksonville. It wasn't until nearly fifteen years later that she completed her program of study, earning a Bachelor's degree at the University of North Florida in print journalism. She also completed a course preparing her for the Florida Real Estate license exam but did not pursue this path. In the 1990s, she earned a two-year degree as a paralegal, also from UNF. Other than her internship at the Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, and helping family with legal research, she was unable to work in this crowded field. Ann earned a Master of Fine Arts (MFA), specializing in Poetry and Creative Writing from Antioch University Los Angeles in 2008. This was her crowning achievement, earned while she was working full time.
Even after an early retirement, Ann continued working. Her last paid position was as a college professor, teaching College Composition at a large, national private university.
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