About // Ronda Rich
Audiences love the comic charm and warmth of best-selling author and southern humorist Ronda Rich and often express it with standing ovations. While she tailors her presentations to the clients' needs, offering thought-provoking motivation and enjoyable storytelling to secular audiences or moving inspiration to Christian audiences, one element remains constant-she always entertains with hilarious anecdotes and witticisms. Her forte, of course, is southern womanhood and all that entails from mothers to beauty pageants to big hair to the men we love and the ones we don't.
Give her an audience - any audience - and she'll give whatever it takes. Perfect for female and mixed audiences, the former sportswriter is also popular with all male audiences as she delves into her own experiences to talk about The Things We Learn From Sports.
My Life In The PitsMy Life in the Pits followed up her first national best seller, What Southern Women Know (That Every Woman Should) with a humorous and heart-tugging look at life on the NASCAR circuit. My Life In The Pits reveals the behind-the-scene life of stock car racing in a way it has never been seen before-through a woman's eyes.
Ronda Rich discovered the sport, then ruled solely by men, as a young sportswriter while she was still in college. Later, she would be become a publicist working with team sponsors and would be only one of a few women to travel on the circuit fulltime. As one of the first women to be permitted in the pits, she would spend the next 10 years mentored by the likes of Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty, Bill Elliott, Darrell Waltrip and many of the most famous racers in NASCAR history. Along the way, she would become the first woman to win Associated Press' top honor for sports writing. Her coming-of-age story is one of lessons learned the hard way, the fun way-and the sad way.
Released amidst a storm of media attention, including a CNN spotlight news segment, My Life In The Pits has earned a tremendous amount of critical acclaim. The New York Times called it "the most satisfying" of all the NASCAR books and says that it's "vivid and provocative" while Kirkus Reviews wrote that Ronda has "plenty of storytelling verve and insider's knowledge; she excels in bringing to life the big players." The Daytona Beach News-Journal reported that, "It's not the typical racing book. Far from it. Rich spins fascinating tales...a delightful, name-dropping romp through the garage area." Perhaps the book's biggest endorsement came recently when renowned broadcaster Paul Harvey touted it in his national radio show calling it "informative and thoroughly entertaining."
What Ronda has to say: This will always be, I believe, my favorite book that I ever write. This was my tribute to the many mentors who taught me and gave me the wisdom to make a better life that I would have had without those lessons. It is a collection of life's strongest, boldest lessons learned in an unusual place - race car garages and race tracks across America.
Ronda's favorite lesson: Most definitely, the 1989 Daytona 500 with Darrell Waltrip. That gray, overcast day taught me that anything in life is possible. Even when science says it's impossible.
Ronda's favorite hero: It's tough to chose among a collection of many, but it has always been and continues to be Richard Childress (who also wrote the foreword for the book). I adore him because he's a scrapper who came up the hard way. Life wasn't easy for Childress but he has always found a way to make things work and to improve. I've known him for 20 years and my favorite thing about him is that he has never changed a lick. He's richer and more famous but he's still a real sport about life and the people around him.
Ronda's toughest lesson: Tim Richmond. I'm still not over his life or his death, though writing about him did help the healing to begin 12 years after his death. He made an incredible mark on my life and I still ponder regularly the things I learned from him.