ALAMOGORDO DAILY NEWS (NEW MEXICO) -- Hildebrant was born in 1961 and is one of six children. She was raised in Colorado, living on a farm for most of her childhood. At 25, Hildebrant enlisted with the U.S. Coast Guard, serving as Military Police officer and later a radioman. Hildebrandt served for two years and got out after marrying her husband, a fellow Coast Guardsman. About four years ago, the Hildebrandts retired to Socorro.
Upon leaving the military, Hildebrandt used her GI Bill to pursue higher education, earning a bachelor's degree in history at Columbia College, a Master’s in History at San Francisco State University and a Ph.D in history at the University of Maine.