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Rico Austin PhD - Mi Vida Loca (Biography)

Born and raised in Southwestern Idaho, Rico is the oldest of five boys, growing up in a area that was ripe for several adventures for him, his four younger brothers and numerous cousins.

Rico grew up near farmland that produced potatoes, hay, hops, grain and corn. There were several fruit orchards and vineyards in the Snake River Valley as well, due to the extraordinary fertile soil. A couple of years out of high school he moved to Boise and enrolled at Boise State University as a student and walk on football player. However, he could not escape the allure of traveling the world and began writing and storing his experiences in hopes of someday becoming a novelist. He began by reading every chance he had. From contemporary novels to classical literature, Rico's love of storytelling was uncontrollable. He appeared occasionally at Boise's former Comedy Club as a "Stand Up Comedian" retelling his stories of growing up in a comedic fashion. Rico earned an Associate Degree in Marketing and Sales from BSU. After a few years of low level management positions Rico moved to Hawaii for a short time surfing the waters of Kauai and enjoying the outdoors. He then moved to Southern California for less than a year before heading back to Idaho. In 1991 Rico moved to the Phoenix/Scottsdale area and continued his education receiving a Bachelors of Business Administration in International Business at Grand Canyon University and received "Outstanding International Business Graduate of 1995." That same year he was also selected as "Mr. Future Business Executive" at the State Leadership Conference which included all universities in the State of Arizona.

The summer before graduating Rico went to Vilnius, Lithuania and taught English (ESL). During fall semester of his senior year at GCU Rico attended Staffordshire University in England where he also started on the American Football Team for the Staffordshire Stallions. Rico finished his Masters, an MBA in International Management at Thunderbird School of Global Management with a focus on the Latin American Region and the Spanish language. He did
this while working full time as a feature writer and free lance journalist at the T-Bird school paper "DAS TOR." A few of his articles at "DAS TOR" were written in Spanish by Rico specially for the foreign students of Latin America.

Former Vice President Dan Quayle served as an "Invited Interim Professor by the Thunderbird School President for 2 semesters" and Rico was fortunate enough to be one of 16 students selected to attend his class.

*Special note, Rico received an "A" from the VP for the 2 credit elective class. Was it because of Rico's performance on studies or VP Quayle was afraid of what Mr. Austin might write in the paper?

Hollywood has even had an encounter with Rico. For those of you who watched Baywatch with the beautiful Pamela Anderson, Carmen Electra and David Hasselhoff, Mr. Rico Austin did a cameo appearance in the episode "Night of the Dolphin" in 1997 where he played the role of a drug lord on a huge yacht with sexy chicks. He and his graduate class mates watched the episode when it aired in the "old clock tower hanger" together in the TV lounge. He was invited back for another episode by Producer and Casting Director Susie Glickman, but had to decline due to a conflict with finals at Thunderbird. Rico chose education over stardom, when questioned why, he responded, "No one can ever take your education away, everything else can come and go and, most likely will." Rico also acted in a commercial for the local market in Boise, ID as a construction worker in "That old House" sponsored by BMC West.

Rico is an avid fisherman and has traveled far and wide to cast his line into many waters; including streams, lakes, ponds, rivers, seas and oceans. He has worked for a few international companies as both a sales manager and a marketing manager. In his spare time he has worked as a Land Developer and is a Licensed Realtor in Arizona. Should you decide to make your home in Arizona or would like to purchase property to build your dream home in the future, Rico would be more than happy to show you around his Great State of Arizona.
Rico now is happily married to a graphic artist from Minnesota with a prominent company. They make their home in the "Land of the Sun" Scottsdale, Arizona. He and his wife Connie enjoy snorkeling, hiking, hanging by their swimming pool and traveling to the beaches of Mexico while sipping on a cold cerveza or margarita blended with Rico's favorite TEQUILA.

Rico Austin first began writing seriously as a seventh grader at age 13. He was elected as reporter for the "Eager Beaver 4-H Club" in Marsing, Idaho and started submitting weekly articles to the local newspaper. Rico then was elected reporter for the local FFA chapter his freshman and sophomore year continuing to expand his writing ability. As a freshman Rico took 3rd place in the Marsing High School essay contest titled "American Beef Farmers." He later would write a few short stories for Reader's Digest and become a professional freelance and feature writer for DAS TOR newspaper at Thunderbird, The American Graduate School of Global Management from 1996 - 1998. Rico also won the first and only writing essay at DAS TOR in March 1997. The essay asked contestants to propose ways for Thunderbird to be improved. Rico used his humor, knowledge of several countries that he had traveled to and innovation to secure the winning essay. One of his most serious assignments and pieces of journalism was reporting on the Winterim class 97 "US Foreign Economic Policy" in Washington DC including the opening of the 105th Congress and the Inauguration of the President of the United States - Mr. Bill Clinton.

Rico was selected for the May 19th, 2013 issue to represent Arizona in fellow author, Annette Synder’s popular blog, Fifty Authors from Fifty States, which spotlights writing professionals across the Fifty United States.   


He was again chosen to represent his home state of Idaho on March 23rd, 2014


And, yet again he was named for writing about Arizona on January 17th, 2016;


Rico was also selected among several hundred writers and bloggers to help compile a booklet with 13 other prominent authors. "How to Create Credibility as a Freelancer - 70 Tips from a Collection of Experts" was published in 12/2009.


Rico Austin earned his PhD in Tequila in 2016, a feat of which less than 200 people in the world can claim from Tequila Guru, Julio Bermejo PhD, who is the Tequila Ambassador to the USA and creator of the famous Tommy’s Margarita in San Francisco. Julio Bermejo also produces his  own fine Tequila L&J (Lili y Julio) brand.

“I wasn’t drinking, I was studying!” is what Rico proudly boasts about his becoming a Bona Fide Tequila Connoisseur.


Rico's Favorite movie, Gone with the Wind


Favorite comedies, Hangover” & “The Wolf of Wall Street


Rico’s favorite books are:


John Steinbeck’s East of Eden


Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea


J.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit


David Stuart’s The Guaymas Chronicles


Jack London’s Call of the Wild


E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web


Wilson Rawls’ Where the Red Fern Grows



Rico’s first novel, MY BAD TEQUILA was published in September 11, 2010.


His first children’s book, ARIZONA Is Where I Live was published February 14, 2013. This was the same day as Arizona’s 101st Birthday.


Rico’s autobiography / memoir  In the Shadow of ELVIS, Perils of a Ghostwriter was published April 26, 2013.


Son of the KING, an ELVIS paradox unveiled is Rico’s fourth book and is a biography published in February, 2014.


Rico recently finished his fifth book, Author, Artist & Anyone’s Personal Marketing Guide to Financial Success with 11 Proven Promotions including Blogs and Social Media in March, 2015.


Rico completed his other fifth book (technically, his sixth), which is an extension or addition of his previous marketing guide. Entrepreneur, Realtor & Anyone’s Personal Marketing Guide to Financial Success with 10 Proven Promotions including Blogs and Social Media in June, 2015.


Lucky book number seven is Rico’s latest work as a wordsmith. This mystery is a non-fiction dog story which captures the true, incredible kidnapping of Lucky, a poodle mix and the heart of a Mexican community in the towns of San Carlos, Guaymas, Hermosillo, Obregon & Empalme in trying to get Lucky back home to his owner. Mexico got Lucky was published in 2015.


In May, 2014, Rico joined the Drivers and Racing Crews of the NORRA Mexican 1000 to write a travel /race book to accompany the documentary film that will be screened and made of the Baja race. Rico was invited and chosen by the sponsors of the race and the documentary film maker to write of this adventure of which he is currently working on.  Baja Loco, 4 Racing Days and Tequila Nights on the NORRA Mexican 1000 was ready for publication in November 2016, just in time to celebrate the 50th year anniversary of the NORRA Mexican 1000,  1967 - 2017, which was held April 23rd - April 27th, 2017 and Rico held a book signing at the Welcome NORRA 1000 Fiesta at the famous Horsepower Ranch in Ensenda, Baja, Mexico on April 21st, 2017.


Next on the list is a self-help book for teenage boys raised by single parents or from broken homes. This book will be a labor of love, in hopes that if by reading this book, it can make a positive and great difference in young men’s lives and then possibly a biography about his good friend, the Buffalo Trainer, T.C. (Colin) Thorstenson, the most knowledgeable person in the world pertaining to Buffalo.  This man has raised buffalo and worked with them since he was eight years young. Mr. T.C. lives in Cave Creek, just a ways down the road from Rico and owns the Hogs N Horses Saloon in downtown Cave Creek, Arizona.


And then, finally a return to My Bad Tequila, the next Bottle -  the sequel, quite possibly turning it into a trilogy of which his fans are greatly anticipating.


Rico is planning on writing a couple of screenplays of a couple of his novels to hopefully be turned into films.   


“I have eight simple sentences of which I live by that cover most of my philosophy for and of life; each written by a different author during a different time; all profound.” – Rico Austin


“Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”

(Matthew 7:12)  – Bible


“The harder I work, the luckier I get.”

 – Henry Ford


“In order to write about life, first you must live it.”

 – Ernest Hemingway


“Never, never, never give up.”

– Winston Churchill


“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

 – Edmund Burke


“Every rose has its thorn,”

– Poison with Bret Michaels


“You’ll see the true reflection of me when the tequila bottle is empty.”

 – Rico Austin


“Screw me once, shame on you; screw me twice, shame on me.”

 – (screwed) Author unknown