Raised in Alaska, Havilah felt a strong desire to explore beyond her home state. At the age of 18, she took a bold step and joined the U.S. Navy. Following completing boot camp and technical training, her journey led her to Japan, where she served at Naval Air Facility Atsugi. She assumed the roles of an Aviation Ordnanceman and Plane Captain within Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 27, known as the Royal Maces, attached to the USS Kitty Hawk.

Transitioning from military service in 2006, Havilah remained dedicated to the military community, contributing as a volunteer while simultaneously taking on diverse roles at the bases where her husband was stationed. During this time, she pursued higher education and successfully earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Human & Family Development from Arizona State University, focusing on supporting military families.