She was raised in Freeport, Maine, and went to Freeport High School. She later attended Addison Business School, where she learned secretarial skills, and was eventually hired by Joe Ransome Chevrolet.
In 1982, she met accountant Robert Anderson, who was hired to audit the car dealership. She left the dealership in 1984, and married Anderson that year. In 1986, she gave birth to Donald, and in 1988 she gave birth to Petra. In 1986, she and Robert started a small mail-order business in collectible American coins.