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UO professor is new ‘Mrs. Oregon’

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MAJ Joelle Goodwin is Oregon's new Mrs.

MAJ Joelle Goodwin is Oregon's new "Mrs."

by Furman “Neil” Neeley
U.S. Army Cadet Command Public Affairs

EUGENE, Ore. – You may call her ma’am, Maj. Goodwin or just Joelle, but as of January 25th, Maj. Joelle Goodwin carries a new title:  Mrs. Oregon America 2009. The Broadway Rose Theater in Tigard was the setting as married women from across Oregon came together to compete for the title of Mrs. Oregon. Goodwin became the first African-American to win the title.

Goodwin is an associate professor of military science at the University of Oregon where she serves the U. of Oregon Army ROTC program as executive officer.  She’s a former active-duty Soldier who came to the program through a retiree recall immediately after her retirement in October of last year.

“People sometimes look at me funny with I tell them that I enjoy entering beauty pageants,” Goodwin said. “Being that tough Army officer and that beauty queen who likes to get dolled up and wear an evening gown, can go together and complement each other. I think that doing both of those things makes me a better person.”

Goodwin says that America is very proud of their military and that pride and respect carries over to the pageants that she competes in. “I get nothing but kudos for being a member of the armed forces when my pageant sisters learn than I am in the Army.”

A 22 year career as an Army officer prepared her for the physical demands of staying in top shape to compete in pageants and she states, “For me pageantry is like a sport.  I work hard like an athlete to keep myself in shape physically and mentally. Being in the Army has toughened me up and given me the confidence to get up on stage in front of a lot of people and speak.”

In addition to the beauty, Goodwin possesses plenty of brains.  A 1986 graduate of the University of Oregon, she earned her masters degree in psychology from Hood College in Frederick, Md. She also works to give back to the community, serving on the board of the Lane County Chapter of the U of O Alumni Association, teaching Sunday school, and working with the National Anthem Project.

For Goodwin, the next 12 months will be filled with speaking engagements, parades, fairs and festivals but on top of all that she will be preparing for the next step of competition; the Mrs. America pageant which will be held in Tucson, Ariz., in September. It seems as if the Army major has set some lofty goals for herself, but there is no doubt that this “officer and a lady” has what it takes to achieve those goals.


Written by CadetCommandPAO

April 10, 2009 at 8:10 am

Posted in Feature

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  1. Joelle and I had a lot of fun while attending the University of Oregon. I always knew that she would go far in life and have often asked mutual friends about her.

    I hope to see you in TUS in September to cheer you on! Go JO-JO!!!!

    LaLita A Lockett

    August 29, 2009 at 2:38 am

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