Based in the Town of Niskayuna, NY, Rita Ogburn-McCall, has been writing poetry, essays, and short fiction for more than 11 years. Her poem, “Crossing the Street…,” received an honorable mention in the Russell Sage College’s Annual 2004 Audre Lorde Poetry Contest, and was later published in Mark Tompkins & Jennifer McMahon’s 2006 anthology, Illuminations: Expressions of the Personal Spiritual Experience. She served as Managing Editor of the Capital Region Baptist Carrier, a New York based Baptist Ecumenical publication that reached as far as the Virginia/Washington areas.
Ogburn-McCall holds two Master of Art degrees; Liberal Arts (English and African American literary theory) and Africana Studies from the State University of New York at Albany. In 2005, she received the Dr. Seth W. Spellman, Jr. Academic Achievement Award from the University at Albany/SUNY. She also received the University at Albany’s Africana Studies Award for her publication of Habari, a department newsletter, in 2009. Her literary endeavors also include facilitating young writer’s groups in her community and participating in the Schenectady Public Library writing groups. Ogburn-McCall served on the board of the Hudson Valley Writer’s Guild from 2004 to 2009, of which she is still a member. She has served on the New York State board of Church Women United as the Vice-President of Ecumenical Action since 2007, which allows her to pursue research in environmental justice issues relating to health, child safety, worldwide peace efforts, and human trafficking.
Ogburn-McCall is a mother of three grown children and three grandchildren, who give her ample material for fictional writing projects. Her hobbies include photography, web design and development, reading, arts and crafts, fishing, and refinishing antique furniture. She volunteers with various Christian organizations in her community when not performing tricks to amuse her three puppies. Although she is a literary theorist, James Patterson novels are her secret obsession.