T H E W H O L E N I N E Y A R D S
As a single mother of three children, Judy joined Home Interiors & Gifts, Inc. of Dallas, Texas in 1965 and enjoyed a twenty-one year run. She worked from her home as she cared for her kids and earned extra money. She met women like herself who wanted to beautify their homes. Judy gave decorating shows on the hostess plan. Along the way, she adopted two sons to round out her family--three sons, two daughters.
As time passed, the business grew and prospered, and at retirement, she was a branch manager. Blessed with many friends and associates, working for the incomparable Mary C. Crowley in the framework of a Christian company exceeded Judy’s wildest dreams.
Judy served on boards of directors with Frontline Outreach Ministry, an inner-city ministry in Orlando, Florida; Christian Counseling Ministries, a national intensive therapy program, Buena Vista, Colorado; and Life for Kids, Christian Adoption, Winter Park, Florida. She also made mission trips abroad to Jamaica, Thailand, Republic of Belarus, and other Communist countries before the Berlin Wall fell. She served for many years on an Advisory Council for Pro-Life Action Ministries, and as a public advocate to prevent abortion.
After retirement, Judy reunited with old friend, Joy Postle Blackstone, the Glamour Bird Artist whom she met fifteen years earlier. Joy was bedridden, that resulted from a triple hip fracture. Eventually, the visits took on a new purpose. After Joy painted in the activity room at West Orange Manor, the two returned to Joy’s room. Judy turned on the tape recorder. Writing Joy’s story kept them occupied until her death in 1989. The final chapter was written the night before Joy died.
In the aftermath of Joy’s passing, Judy set the manuscript aside as pro-life activism took pre-eminence. In 1994 Judy married Mitch Johnson and together, they cared for her mother, Vera Harvey, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease until her death. This became Judy’s consuming priority. For a season, life went down another path, later to emerge afresh. Judy enters each season with passion.
Twenty years of volunteerism in the pro-life movement passed during which Judy co-founded a ministry, The True Majority; Women Speaking for Women. She put her public speaking experience and foreign travel interests to good use as a pro-life/pro-family advocate at U.N. Conferences in Beijing, Istanbul, and New York City. She also published a newspaper, “Voices of the True Majority,” and gave press conferences and radio and television interviews. In 1994, she was the petitioner in U. S. Supreme Court Case, Madsen vs. Aware Women Clinic. It concerned her right of free speech, to speak to women on the public sidewalks about safe alternatives to abortion.
Finally, Judy brought out her early drafts of the manuscript, joined Word Weavers, an Orlando critique group, and recommitted herself to its publication.
Judy has a wealth of experiences upon which to draw for future works. She has now built a track record of multiple book signings and programs in a variety of venues since publication of Joy Cometh in the Morning, The Joy Postle Blackstone Story and Stories from the Front Lines, the Battle Against Abortion.