Annette Montez Kolda was born into a large Catholic, Latino family on October 11, 1960 in Corpus Christi, Texas. Much of the inspiration for her writing is drawn from her rich TexMex culture and her beloved Church.
After graduating high school, Kolda went on to attend Corpus Christi's Del Mar Community College. In between attending classes, she worked at a residential facility for disabled children and took part in missionary trips to Mexico.
Later, she transferred to the University of Texas at Austin where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction.
Kolda's first job out of college was that of pastoral associate with the Diocese of Corpus Christi. She worked in the Office of Ministry with the Disabled where she partnered up with a Sister of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament. Together, Kolda and her ministry partner visited the homes of people with disabilities, bringing to them the Word of God and instructing them in the Holy Sacraments of the Catholic Church. Kolda used the sign language that she learned at the University of Texas to communicate with the many hearing impaired individuals that attended Diocese Masses, classes and social events.
Kolda's next job took her to Houston, Texas where she taught sixth-grade English to gifted and talented students. While in Houston, she married her high school sweetheart, Tim Kolda.
In 1991, Kolda and her husband started a family, and she left the classroom to stay at home and raise three children. During that time, she taught off and on– preschool, first grade and third grade, but most of the years were spent volunteering at her children's schools, leading Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts, teaching Sunday School and volunteering with bilingual students. In addition to her husband and three children, her family has grown to include a son-in-law and two grandsons.
In 2010, with the help of UCLA Online Writers' Program, Kolda imagined a tough, brave nun that would fight injustice and stand up for the poor, and she started writing her first novel, Pura Vida.