An experienced leader and champion for justice
Pat Timmons-Goodson is a civil rights leader and former North Carolina Supreme Court justice running for Congress to continue her outstanding career of public service. Pat grew up as the eldest of six children in a military family, and her parents taught her the value of education. She earned her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and was among the first African American students to become a double Tar Heel. After law school, Pat oversaw district operations for the U.S. Census during the 1980 count. She went on to serve as a Cumberland County assistant district attorney and worked for Legal Aid. At the age of 29, Pat became the first African American woman named in the 12th Judicial District of North Carolina. She was elected to three consecutive terms and was elevated to the North Carolina Court of Appeals in 1997. In 2006, Pat was honored to become the first African American woman on the Supreme Court of North Carolina. Voters in the state ratified the governor’s appointment in a statewide election later that year. She stepped down from the Supreme Court in 2012 and was appointed to the United States Commission on Civil Rights in 2014. In 2016, President Obama nominated Pat to serve as a judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina. The American Bar Association unanimously gave her its highest rating, but the Senate never acted on her nomination. Pat has been awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the highest award offered for state service, and the North Carolina Bar Association named her a Liberty Bell Award recipient. Pat and her husband, Dr. Ernest Goodson, met as students at UNC. The proud parents of two adult sons. Pat and Dr. Goodson live in Fayetteville, where they are active members in their church, First Baptist Church, Moore Street.
A fighter for North Carolina working families
Pat is running for Congress to expand economic opportunity for hardworking North Carolina families. “I wanted to be that lawyer that folks came to when they had a problem that they could not solve,” she has said of her decision to dedicate her career to helping others. As a graduate of a North Carolina public university, she is deeply committed to ensuring that every student has the opportunity to succeed. Pat is a trailblazer who has broken down barriers throughout her career, and she credits her father for teaching her to resist the forces holding her back and to instead focus her energy on moving forward. She believes that each generation is charged with strengthening America and continuing its centuries of progress, and she has worked tirelessly to fulfill that duty as an attorney, a judge, and as a member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.
An opportunity to turn a newly-drawn seat blue
Last year, facing pressure from the Supreme Court of North Carolina, lawmakers in the state had to redraw illegally gerrymandered congressional districts that heavily favored Republicans in this purple state. North Carolina’s newly-drawn 8th Congressional District is highly competitive, forcing incumbent Republican Congressman Richard Hudson into the first competitive general election of his career. Hudson has a long record of prioritizing a dangerous and extreme agenda that hurts the working families he was elected to serve, and Pat has what it takes to hold him accountable and bring new leadership to Congress. This district has never before elected an African American representative to the House, and Pat is poised to be the first. She is running a strong grassroots campaign, and she has what it takes to win in November. Let’s show Pat the full support of the EMILY’s List community and help elect this champion for North Carolina working families to Congress.