It is always a special pleasure for SKETCH PAD to write about an Alamance County native as a national and international celebrity. All one has to say is JEANNE ROBERTSON and everyone just feels happier. One writer has described Jeanne as memorable because of her “beauty queenesque” good looks and her 6’2’’height. That’s a perfect description but it by no means tells a full story. Jeanne explains that she is not a comedian. She doesn’t tell jokes. She is a humorist, basing her stories on her own life experiences. Somehow her stories touch everyone. You know how an experience is just twice as funny if you have, “been there, done that”. Well, that’s what makes Jeanne’s stories so hilarious and etches her message into your mind. Her main message is,” put a little humor in your life everyday and, most of all-- be able to laugh at yourself.”

Jeanne has a myriad of life stories to draw from. She has always been a standout. In 1963, she rose to fame on the strings of her ukulele as Miss North Carolina and went on to win Miss Congeniality in the Miss America Pageant. Jeanne explains that it was the Miss America Pageant that was the catalyst for her career as a humorist and public speaker.

Jeanne is a graduate of Auburn University and loves her alma mater. However she equally loves Elon University where she serves on the Board of Trustees. The Robertsons are fiercely loyal to Elon Athletics ad were recently recognized by the Southern Conference as recipients of Elon's 2007 Distinguished Service Award. Elon Television Department produced Jeanne's last two DVDs.

Jeanne speaks to thousands of people annually and has used her southern drawl to charm her way into the hearts of her audiences. Whether she is explaining how to fit yourself into a body suit or how to cook red-eye gravy, you will definitely remember what she tells you. Jeanne has a newly released program that describes in graphic detail the joys and challenges of white water rafting on the beautiful Colorado river. Jeanne’s guided tour is a mesmerizing encounter with sheer terror. You’ll never be the same, especially if you have already been intimidated by a white water fiasco. This program is available on Videos, CDs and DVDs in the Picasso Gallery at the Captain White House in Graham. A percentage of these sales benefit the Picasso Gallery and the Alamance County Art’s Council. Back in 1996, Jeanne was Honorary Chairman of the Arts Council’s drive to save the Captain White House and the Paramount Theater.

Jeanne has received many national and International awards for her work. If SKETCH PAD had listed them all we wouldn’t have had any room to tell you anything else about Jeanne. She has been named Woman of the Year by many prestigious Women’s magazines, and many other national and international organizations. Perhaps Jeanne’s most celebrated awards are the Cavett Award and the Golden Gavel Award. The Cavett Award is a most cherished award presented by the National Speakers Association to one member whose accomplishments, integrity and reputation are a credit to the association. Jeanne was the first woman to receive this award. The Golden Gavel Award is presented by Toastmasters International and is also a most treasured honor presented annually to one individual for outstanding achievements in communication and leadership.

In the very near future, Jeanne will have a presentation at the Captain White House. The new video will be featured, and Jeanne will be there in person with her inimitable style of humor. She’ll give you some serious food for thought while she keeps you laughing. As she says about one of her experiences, “she laughed so hard her water broke and she wasn’t even pregnant. Don’t miss this funny time together. Sketch Pad promises that a fun time will be had by all.

The Alamance County Arts Council Newsletter - August 2007
Reprinted with permission of the Alamance County Arts Council and Peggy Harris