Jeanne Robertson

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Jeanne Robertson
Jeanne-Robertson-2012.jpg
Performing onstage in Charlottesville, Virginia, April 2012
Born (1943-09-21) September 21, 1943 (age 75)
OccupationHumorist, speaker, teacher
Height6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
TitleMiss North Carolina 1963
Spouse(s)Jerry Robertson, Ph.D.
Beauty pageant titleholder
Hair colorWhite[1] (formerly blond)[2]
Major
competition(s)
Miss America 1964
Websitehttp://www.jeannerobertson.com/

Jeanne Swanner Robertson (born September 21, 1943) is an American humorist, motivational speaker[2] and a former Miss North Carolina and physical education teacher.

Early life[edit]

Jeanne Swanner was raised in Graham, North Carolina,[3][2] one of three daughters. Not only was she taller than sisters Katherine and Andrea,[4] she was also especially tall as a youth, growing to 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) by age thirteen and in seventh grade.[4] She was an avid basketball player.[2]

Pageant participant[edit]

In 1963, at age 19, she was named Miss North Carolina[5] and went on to be named Miss Congeniality in that year's Miss America competition.[6][2] Robertson credits her reign as the catalyst for her career.[7][8]

Following her Miss North Carolina reign, Robertson used the scholarship funds to fund her college education at Auburn University where she majored in physical education, joined Alpha Gamma Delta[9] and played on its basketball team,[2] graduating in 1967.[10]

Career[edit]

Robertson taught physical education for eight years in North Carolina.[11]

Although she began her public speaking career with her pageant title, Robertson has achieved much more national attention as a humorist and speaker. Her anecdotes have been broadcast regularly on satellite radio comedy channels including XM Radio's Laugh USA, Sirius Radio's Blue Collar Comedy and its Family Comedy Channel,[10][2] and Laugh Break. Her popularity soared, however, in 2009 after a handful of humorous clips from her talks became viral videos.[8][2] Robertson distinguishes between a humorist, which she considers herself, and a comedian, stating, "The humorist weaves the longer stories with a point. We don't go 'after' anybody. I'm telling my life."[6]

In 1980 she was designated a Certified Speaking Professional by the National Speakers Association (NSA), and served as the association's president in 1985.[10] She is also an award-winning Toastmaster.[2]

On April 29, 2008, she spoke at the White House for National Volunteer Week to honor the 1,300 volunteers who donate time to work at the White House.[10]

Honors and awards[edit]

  • National Speakers Association Speaker Hall of Fame (inducted in 1981)[10]
  • National Speakers Association Cavett Award (1989); first woman to receive the award[10]
  • Toastmasters International Golden Gavel Award (1998)[10]
  • North Carolina Press Association North Carolinian of the Year (2001)[10]

Graham Historical Museum in her hometown, Graham, North Carolina, features a permanent exhibit, Jeanne Swanner Robertson.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Jeanne is married to Jerry Robertson,[13] a graduate of Duke University (where, at 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) tall[13] and on an athletic scholarship,[14] he played on its basketball team — eventually as its captain).[2] He received his master's degree and doctorate at the University of North Carolina[14] and was an educator and eventually Superintendent of the Alamance County School System.[2] In her performances, Jeanne calls him "Left Brain".[13] They have a son, Bailey "Beaver" Bowline,[10] who is 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) tall.[1] Beaver is a 1989 graduate of Elon University, where Jeanne is a trustee.[10] He and his wife Dayna have two sons, Ryder and Gray.[1]

Jeanne and Jerry Robertson are both members of Elon University's Phoenix Club which supports the athletic program.[10] Jeanne is Methodist.[15]

She has claimed her favorite television series is The Andy Griffith Show.[3] Her Mayberry Humor Across the USA furthers her connection to Griffith's show. The book title refers to Mayberry, the town which is the setting of Griffith's show.

Books[edit]

Robertson has authored three books.[2]

  • Humor: The Magic of Genie: Seven Potions for Developing a Sense of Humor (1989) Rich Publishing Company, ISBN 9780960725694
  • Mayberry Humor Across the USA (1995) Rich Publishing Company, ISBN 9780927577021
  • Don't Let the Funny Stuff Get Away (1998) Rich Publishing Company, ISBN 9780927577038

Audio and video media[edit]

Robertson's performances have been recorded on both DVD and CD. She currently has eight DVD titles available.[2]

  • Southern Style[15]
  • Don't go to Vegas Without a Baptist[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Robertson, Jeanne. "Don't Mess with Teenage Hussies". YouTube.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Overman, Ogi (April 30, 2013). "50 years later, Miss Congeniality more popular than ever before". Jamestown News. Retrieved January 10, 2017.[dead link]
  3. ^ a b Robertson, Jeanne. "NEW! Jeanne Robertson Left Brain vs Intruder - HILARIOUS!!!". YouTube.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  4. ^ a b Robertson, Jeanne. "Don't Trick or Treat Without the Right Costume". YouTube.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  5. ^ "Memory Lane - Where's My Crown?". Southeast Lifestyle. Archived from the original on 2013-08-17.
  6. ^ a b Gordon, Jean (26 January 2013). "Humorist Robertson coming to Foundation". The Daily Courier. Forest City, North Carolina. p. A1.
  7. ^ "Meet Jeanne Robertson — North Carolina Public Radio WUNC". WUNC.org. Retrieved 2010-02-15.
  8. ^ a b Courter, Barry (17 February 2012). "Funny and smart - at 68, Jeanne Robertson finds second vocation as comedian". Chattanooga Times Free Press. p. 57.
  9. ^ "Appreciating Sisterhood". Alpha Gamma Delta Quarterly: 26. Summer 2018.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Anderson, Dan (2008-05-01). "Elon trustee Jeanne Robertson is featured speaker at White House event". jeannerobertson.com. Elon University. Archived from the original on 2013-03-23. Retrieved 2013-03-24.
  11. ^ Ellis, Rosemary (4 February 1990). "The value of humor: making life bearable". The Press of Atlantic City. p. G1.
  12. ^ "Graham Historical Museum". VisitNC.com. Retrieved January 10, 2017.
  13. ^ a b c Robertson, Jeanne. "Left Brain is in the Building". YouTube.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  14. ^ a b Robertson, Jeanne. "Don't send a man to the grocery store!". YouTube.com. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  15. ^ a b c Crim, Linda "MissDazey" (June 5, 2012). "Evangel University Chapel". Jeanne-fun.com. Retrieved January 10, 2017.

External links[edit]