Pell City, Alabama's culture became richer when
Rita Moritz moved here ten years ago from
Virginia. As well as bringing her love of poetry
and writing with her, she also brought fresh
ideas to the artists and poets of Alabama. The
only thing she loves more than the Arts is
bringing hope and encouragement to hurting
people. She does that both through her speaking
and her writing.
best biographical information was best given in
a recent article about her that was published in
the local newspaper.
Author Spotlight on Rita Aiken Moritz
By Urainah Glidewell
?How do you know you can?t if you have never
even tried?? These are the words that encourage
me at the end of every email Rita Aiken Moritz
has sent me over the past three years.
Mrs. Moritz is a writer, poet, blogger, editor,
and inspirational speaker who often speaks at
churches, civic groups, and ladies? conferences.
She is also the founder and president of Writers
Anonymous, a local group of creative poets who
meet the first Thursday of every month in Pell
City. Collectively, they have garnered over 75
poetry awards during the past year. They have
organized the Mid-Winter Writer?s Conference
held in Pell City for the past three years. The
conference has grown in attendance and offers an
array of workshops for writers of every genre
and level of experience. Moritz is the fearless
leader, the perpetual cheerleader, the gentle
guide, and tenacious teacher of this inspired
?I love words and the people who write them. I
consider it a privilege to be able to encourage
them and be a part of their success,? Moritz
Rita Aiken Moritz is the author of Precious
Poems: A Journey of Hope which was published
in 2013. She has been published in Educational
Leadership, Indeed magazine, and Open Windows,
and has won numerous awards for her poetry. She
has recently published her second book, So
You Love a Prodigal. Inspired by her
personal journey which she chronicles in her
blog ?A Way in the Wilderness Blog? that reaches
over 25,000 people from all over the world every
month, her newest endeavor has been years in the
According to her website,
ritamoritz.com, the mission of Precious
Prodigal is ?to provide help, hope, and
encouragement to the families of prodigals so
those families can grow spiritually and find
peace, serenity, and even joy in their lives.
God uses broken things, and we believe God will
use people in spite of and perhaps even because
of their circumstances.?
In her book, Rita meets the readers where they
are, in their brokenness, and walks with them
through the heartbreak of loving a prodigal.
With a conversational approach, she dares to
address questions like: ?Why my family?? and
?Who?s to blame?? Encouragement, hope, and a
call to action are the central themes of
So You Love a Prodigal. Readers are
assured with simple words and Biblical examples
that God is still in control, their story isn?t
finished, and they are not alone.
?I am overwhelmed by the people who have lined
up to support and promote this book,? Rita
stated. Her book has been endorsed by David
Bennett, editor of ?Homelife? and by
Jennifer Rash, editor-elect of ?The Alabama
Baptist.? Moritz has been a consummate
supporter of all of those around her,
encouraging and revealing in their successes, so
it is natural to support and encourage her in
Mrs. Moritz has lived in Pell City for eleven
years with her husband, Harry Moritz. She has
taught in the Alabama Court Referral Program for
the past ten years, while pursuing her love of
writing. She is a member of Alabama Writers?
Conclave, Alabama Writers Forum,
Alabama State Poetry Society, along with
other state poetry societies. She and her
husband are also the editors of the Alabama
State Poetry Society's monthly newsletter, the
She will be attending an author expo and book
signing at Chelsea General Store, 14555 Highway
280, Chelsea, Alabama on Saturday, December 10
from 10 am-2 pm. She will be featured along with
other local authors, including Stephanie Rodda,
Cabot Barden, Trailon Johnson, Ellen Sallas,
Betty Smith, William Thornton, Marian Powell,
Karen Allen, Shirley Aaron, Audrey Pitt and
If you would like more information on her book
So You Love a Prodigal please
She is a member of the Alabama
State Poetry Society. Retirement hasn't
slowed Rita down, and, among her other
accomplishments, she is the founder of Writers
Anonymous, a poetry group that meets monthly
to share their poetry and both challenge and
encourage other poets. Rita's first poetry book
Poems: A Journey of Hope,"
was published in July, 2013.
In 1993, Rita's article "Tough
Love for Kids at Risk" appeared in "Educational
Since that time she has continued to be involved
with and concerned about families that are
hurting. Rita is an instructor in the North
Alabama Court Referral Services, Inc. She also
mentors and encourages women from a half-way
house. She has continued to write poetry and
other things and has published two non-fiction
books entitled "So You Love a Prodigal" and its
"So You Love a Prodigal Supplemental Workbook"
and is posting to the A Way in the Wilderness
Blog. She also speaks at churches and other
organizations and institutions on a variety of
Accreditation: Alabama Office of the Courts:
Certification as Court Referral Education
Program Instructor -
State of Alabama; 2006 to Present.
Citizenship: U.S. Citizen, born in
as needed annually to maintain Alabama
Office of the Courts Certification.
Administrative Office of the Courts
Training: Court Referral Program Instructor.
Self-taught programs and procedures for
internet web design.
courses in Substance Abuse Treatment and
group counseling techniques as well as
undergraduate core classes in
English, Math and other required classes.
Work-related training including
"constructive 360 degree feedback," conflict
resolution, communication skills, written
and oral presentation, and communication,
personal computers, spreadsheets, plain
language, speaking, problem solving and
writing adult training.
Business College: Presidents List; 4.0 GPA;
graduated with highest honors.
PUBLICATIONS AND AWARDS:
Poems: A Journey of Hope,"
published in July, 2013.
- One of
three featured Poets for a community-wide
"Night of Poetry" on April 21, 2012.
Greenville (AL) Standard
Newspaper. A local newspaper that in 2011
published some of Rita's Poetry.
Grapevine. Quarterly Christian magazine.
Poetry appeared in several issues.
Educational Leadership. Article:
"Tough Love for Kids at Risk" November,
Degree Feedback. Assisted in the development
of and participated in the production of
this training film on how to give and
receive constructive feedback.
invited and appeared in a television
presentation of my poetry.
RitaMoritz.com - Blogging on A Way in the
Wilderness Blog started June, 2011. Website
at RitaMoritz.com and associated Electronic
Social Media Platform established in April,
Anonymous - A small non-profit website for a
local writing group founded by Rita. This
group focuses on poetry
and other genre and sponsors local community writing
contents. Assisted in preparation and
provided input to pages
specifically aimed towards writers and poetry. Design,
preparation, and implementation of content,
linkage relationships with ongoing maintenance. 3 Years
NewHopeBaptistPC.org- A small church
website. Assisted in preparation and
provided input to pages specifically aimed
towards ladies. Design, preparation, and implementation
of content, display and linkage
relationships with ongoing
maintenance. This was a volunteer position. 4 Years
Help-With.us - A small business website. 35+
pages w/ many graphics and internal and
external links. Continue to assist
with comprehensive page and website design as well as
preparation and implementation of content,
Outstanding communication and interpersonal
knowledge of customer service skills and
resolution and problem solving skills.
knowledge of business processes and
- Mother of
six now adult children experienced and
addressed the many difficulties that raising
these children entailed.
to interact with a diverse level of
employees with confidence, empathy, and
Experience with teaching, directing,
supervising, evaluating, and organizing.
experience with Quality Control in regard to
written correspondence and data-base
verification and data entry.
EXPERIENCES AND EXPERTISE:
- 2012 -
Present: Founder and member of Writers
Anonymous, a poetry group formed in St.
Clair County, Alabama.
- 2007 -
Present: Community Adult Education
Instructor for St. Clair County Board of
- 2006 -
Present: State of Alabama Court Referral
Education Program Instructor as an
independent contractor for the
Northern Alabama Court Referral Service.
- 2000 -
Present: Founder and Owner of "Help-With.us"
an Internet-based business that provides
training in personal
computer use and maintenance; personal finance; plain
language communications; life skills; and
computer operations and maintenance.
- 1992 -
2000: Financial/Membership Services Project
Assistant: Quality Control, training,
mentoring of fellow data entry
staff and assisting in evaluation of department
training needs. Primary staff person
responsible for problem solving
and communicating with ASCD Affiliates, evaluating
training needs. Responsible for composing
and editing letters
for department and for streamlining functional
and Business Education Teacher: Taught
business education and English to high
school students in a Christian
school. Subjects included shorthand, typing,
accounting, business math, business English,
resumes, and other business-related subjects.
1980-1981: Administrative Assistant,
Education Department: Hillsborough County
(FL) Correctional Facility. Interacted
with young inmates and acted as liaison between
Director and inmates as well as between
Director and staff teachers.
2 Years Experience.
1979-1992: Full time and Part time
Administrative Assistant to Dr. Walter S.
Beebe, founder of Beebe Publications and
Beebe Evangelistic Association and a respected,
nationally known leader in the Independent
CAPABILITIES AND EXPERIENCE:
o Outstanding Administrative and Case
Administrative Assistant to the Director of
Education Department of a minimum security
state (FL) prison for first time youthful
offenders. 2 Years Experience.
Facilitating and co-facilitating a unipolar
depression support group on the premise of
self determination and being pro-active in
one's own recovery. 2 Years Experience.
English and Business Education to high
school grades 10-12. 2 Years Experience.
in training of peers in customer service and
use of computer technology in Financial
Services Unit of a national educational
association. 2 Years Experience.
o Superior Computer, Internet and
the internet for technical research and
information gathering. 13+ Years Experience.
Assisting in internet web page design. 10+
Using Computers: 16+
Years Experience with Windows System
MS-Word; WordPerfect; Acrobat Reader/Writer;
Spreadsheets: Excel and
Internet Use: AdAware/tracking
programs; malware; anti-virus; cookies; and
Explorer Search Tool: Disk and
file maintenance and management
Email Security; E-Mail handlers; identity
theft; credit card fraud; and phishing
o Outstanding Program and Personnel
Teaching technical and
vocational subjects to teenagers and adults
with diverse academic backgrounds and
abilities. 6+ Years Experience.
and taught courses in relationships,
financial management, and drug and alcohol
abuse for parents for St. Clair County
Community Education. 4 Years Experience.
Developed and taught a curriculum for high
school business classes to include
shorthand, typing, business math, and
bookkeeping. 6 Years Experience.
Developed and conducted poetry workshops for
both elementary and special needs students.
4 Years Experience.