Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Rhita J. Brniak  

Pen Name: None


Born: 1928 in Dorans, Illinois


Illinois Connection

Brniak has lived in Illinois her entire life. She was born in Dorans, Illinois and currently resides in the Chicago area.

Biographical and Professional Information

Rhita "Bede" Waggoner Brniak coauthored ''Ten Sisters: A True Story'' and ''Ten Little Sisters''. A 2004 PBS TV documentary on the sisters won the Gracie Allen Award for short documentary in 2004. Ten Sisters: A True Story is also the subject of a full-length TV documentary scheduled to air on PBS in February 2007. Born in Mattoon, IL, she lived most of her life with her family in Chicago, IL, where she worked as a secretary. She resides close to her family in Chicago. She is featured in the award-winning PBS short documentary on the Ten Sisters (Prairie Fire - PBS WILL) which won a Gracie Allen Award in 2004. She is featured in a full-length PBS documentary, Ten Sisters: A True Story, which premiered on WILL-PBS TV Champaign, IL February 19, 2007. DVDs are available through PBS WILL 217 333 1070. The story of the Ten Sisters was also featured in Family Circle Magazine, and three newspaper articles about the ten sisters won awards for journalism.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library


-- Will T.V. (P.B.S.) won Gracie Allen Award in 2004