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A native Houstonian, Rita is the Houston Regional Dietitian for H-E-B. Prior to joining H-E-B, Rita worked for almost a decade at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital in the Texas Medical Center, in various units such as oncology/hematology, cardiology and outpatient nutrition and diabetes education. She has also worked as a clinic manager for the UT Health Science Center at Houston WIC program.
Rita earned her Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Texas A&M University in College Station, and her Master of Science in Nutrition from Texas Woman's University. Additionally, she completed her dietetic internship at the Houston VA Medical Center and has also completed a Certificate of Training in Adult Weight Management.
When Rita was 13 years old, her mother was diagnosed with cardiovascular disease and that has led her to use her life and education to help others. In addition, her aunt's struggles with type 2 diabetes led her to pursue the Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) credential.
Rita enjoys trying new foods, experimenting in the kitchen, and learning the food habits and customs of different cultures, and why we make the food choices we do. Rita also has a strong interest in culinary history. Rita's food philosophy is that "all foods fit", and she strives to give personalized, realistic nutrition recommendations that translate from science to the plate.
Rita has been an active volunteer with the American Diabetes Association, and was a past secretary for Southeast Texas Association of Diabetes Educators. In 2009, she received the "Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year" award from the Houston Area Dietetic Association.
Rita is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Houston Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, Food & Culinary Professionals, Dietitians in Business and Communications, Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine practice groups, and Retail Dietitians Business Alliance.
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