Lester brings an extensive background in literature, the arts, and graphic design to her work. She holds a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1985), where she majored in English and minored in Studio Art. She later earned an M.A. in English and American literature from the University of Pennsylvania (1993), where she also studied feminist psychoanalytic theory. After relocating to San Francisco in 1995, Lester studied graphic design at the California College of Arts. In 1997, she established and operated a thriving graphic design business, KEEP Visual Communications, which she ran until she began painting full-time in 2003. Lester’s work was included in PRINT Magazine’s design annual "Best Design in America 2001," and has been honored by the International Engraved Graphics Association.
Lester currently works as a painter in Sausalito, California. She has had solo shows, “Storms Spell Trouble for Marin” at The John Hope Franklin Center at Duke University; and at the Citibank Artists Series in Tiburon, California. Lester’s work has been featured in the “Best of Marin” juried show at the Falkirk Museum in San Rafael, California; and in several exhibitions at The Hanes Art Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has numerous commissioned paintings in Bay Area private collections.