What makes Charlotte Parrish-Woody True Blue? “Probably because I’ve been here on campus so long!” laughed the alumnus and marketing director for the University’s Continuing Education Center. Her long-standing association with Georgia Southern began in 1980 with her employment as an office clerk for then-Vice President for Academic Affairs Charles Austin. Shortly thereafter, Parrish-Woody’s responsibilities changed when she enrolled full time at the University. “Dr. Austin talked me into going to college, and he set up my meeting with the admissions office,” she revealed.
Since that time, Parrish-Woody’s roles have shifted from Georgia Southern employee to undergraduate, then graduate student to faculty member. As an undergraduate, her striking looks and personality landed her a slot on the Homecoming Court, catapulted her to the first runner-up spot in the Miss Georgia Southern pageant in 1984, and earned her the title of “Miss Congeniality” in a prior competition. An accomplished singer and dancer, Parrish-Woody was a member of the Southern Dazzlers dance group, the halftime entertainment at Eagles basketball games, and her melodic soprano voice could often be heard floating out of Sarah’s Place, a favorite local hangout on campus for students.
“I never saw myself as a beauty queen,” she says modestly about her pageant experience, instead viewing those opportunities as a way to meet people and develop her interviewing skills. Parrish-Woody graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in public relations, and moved to Atlanta, using that experience to pursue a career in sales and marketing with the Ivan Allen Company and Xerox.
In the early 1990s, she and her husband, Curtis (a communication arts professor), relocated to Statesboro to live closer to family. She returned to the University again – this time as a graduate student – to earn a master’s degree in technology with an emphasis on printing management. Parrish-Woody’s career soon shifted to the world of academia, and for the next several years, she taught upward of 10,000 University students and served as an academic advisor for early childhood majors as well as students in the Georgia Tech Regional Engineering Program. Parrish-Woody also launched the Manufacturers Achievement Awards dinner, an annual networking event that paired industry leaders from regional companies such as Gulfstream Aerospace, Briggs & Stratton, Wal-Mart and Viracon with Georgia Southern students. The event provided students with scholarship and internship opportunities.
For the past nine years, Parrish-Woody has overseen marketing for the Continuing Education Center’s division which includes the Center for Wildlife Education, the Performing Arts Center, Continuing Education, the Botanical Garden, the Georgia Southern Museum and the Coastal Georgia Center. While it may seem impossible for Parrish-Woody to have any time to spare, she and her husband established their own teaching ministry with sons Jared, 18, (a Georgia Southern undergraduate) and Jordan, 13, two years ago. Right Believing Ministries broadcasts several programs each weekend on Statesboro’s Northland Cable television system.