Virginia was born June 20, 1912 in North Dakota. Her family moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota on her 13th birthday. She graduated from high school in 1930. From there she entered St. Cloud Teachers College in Minnesota. After graduating college she then taught first grade in Fairmont, Minnesota from 1937 through 1939.
She was married on September 1, 1939 to Allan Peterson who later took a position as a banker in Paso Robles, California. Upon Virginia’s arrival in Paso Robles, she immediately became involved in community volunteer work which was to become her life long endeavor.
In 1950, she began teaching first grade at Marie Bauer Elementary. In 1965, she became Paso Robles’ first female principal and held the job until she retired in 1979.
Virginia Peterson Elementary School was dedicated on September 5, 1989. Virginia remianed actively involved in her namesake school by riding in the Christmas parade along side students, as well as teaching students about the Pioneer Days. She always participated in the Kindergarten and 5th grade graduations at the end of each year.
Virginia has a living memorial of a redwood tree dedicated to her from the Northern Section California Association for Childhood Education International Members and Friends.