Dorothea Benton Frank and her four siblings --- Lynn Benton Bagnal, William Oliver Benton (deceased), Theodore Anthony Benton and Michael Kent Benton --- were born and reared on Sullivan's Island, South Carolina.
She attended Bishop England High School in Charleston and graduated from General William Moultrie High School in 1969. Her interest in retail apparel took her to Atlanta GA where she graduated from The Fashion Institute of America in 1972. For a short period she lived in Atlanta and was employed in the Atlanta Apparel Mart by College Town Sportswear. She returned to Charleston, SC in 1973 and became a buyer for Kerrison's Department Store. In 1974 she was hired by Byer California and moved to San Francisco, CA. A year later she moved to New York City and went to work on Seventh Avenue for Fire Islander Sportswear, Heralcorp Industries and Michael Lerner. She retired from the apparel industry in 1985.
In 1983 she married Peter Richard Frank and moved to Montclair, NJ shortly after the birth of their first child, Victoria Hanna Frank. In 1988 their son, William Richard Frank was born.
While her children were young Ms. Frank became a volunteer fundraiser, organizing events for various non-profit organizations around the Metropolitan New York area. Past board service includes The Montclair Art Museum, Whole Theater Company, The Drumthwacket Foundation, The NJ State Council on the Arts and The NJ Cultural Trust. She has also served on the Board of Trustees of the SC Coastal Conservation League and the Parent's Council of the College of Charleston. At the present time she is a trustee of Bloomfield College (Bloomfield NJ), The Montclair Film Festival (NJ) and The SC Historical Society.
Her first novel, SULLIVANS ISLAND (Berkley Publishing 2000) debuted on the NY Times list at number nine and went back to press over 25 times, has well over one million copies in print and can be found in 10 foreign languages. Her subsequent novels PLANTATION (Berkley 2002), ISLE OF PALMS (Berkley 2003), SHEM CREEK (Berkley 2004), PAWLEYS ISLAND (Berkley 2005), FULL OF GRACE (Wm. Morrow 2006), BULLS ISLAND (Wm. Morrow 2007), THE CHRISTMAS PEARL and LAND OF MANGO SUNSETS (Wm. Morrow 2008), LOWCOUNTRY SUMMER (Wm. Morrow 2009), RETURN TO SULLIVANS ISLAND (Wm. Morrow 2010), FOLLY BEACH (Wm. Morrow 2011), PORCH LIGHTS (Wm. Morrow 2012), THE LAST ORIGINAL WIFE (Wm. Morrow 2013) were all NY Times bestsellers and may also be found in various foreign languages.
She is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from The College of Charleston and a Doctorate of Fine Arts from Bloomfield College.
Ms. Frank is an avid cook, enjoys fly fishing, reading and travel and is a frequent speaker on the creative process for students of all ages. She divides her time between the Lowcountry of South Carolina and New Jersey.