Steve Gerritson was born and grew up in a little town in Maine. After graduating from high school in 1964, he attended college part time while working as a department store clerk, groundskeeper, and maintenance worker. He joined the Air Force in 1968, and was sent to the Defense Language Institute, where he studied Chinese Mandarin. After his discharge in 1972, he attended the University of Massachusetts, receiving a BA in Political Science in 1974. He was awarded a fellowship to Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School, where he received an MPA in 1976. Since then, he has worked for a number of non-profit organizations, most recently the Economic Development Council of Seattle and King County. He retired in 2016, and now spends his time with volunteer work for environmental groups, and writing mystery novels.