Mary Ann Ritter Arnold was born in Memphis, Tennessee. She attended Marked Tree Public Schools and continued her higher education at Stephen’s College in Columbia, Missouri; then the University of Missouri, where she received a B.S. in Home Economics. Mrs. Ritter was active and served in executive capacity with the National Cotton Council and the Agriculture Council of Arkansas. She served on the board of directors for the Arkansas Rice Council and the U.S. Rice Council and was an alternate for the USA Rice Federation. She served as state chairman of the Farm Services Agency Committee. Mrs. Arnold served on numerous advisory committees for Arkansas State University and was a member of the ASU Foundation Board. She served on the St. Francis Levee District Board of Directors. She was also a Poinsett County Justice of the Peace and district representative for Employer Support of the National Guard and Reserve. Mrs. Ritter was president and chairman of the board of E. Ritter & Company. She served as a director for Marked Tree Bank and was a member of the Crittenden Hospital Board of Trustees.