Getting to Know Leigh Goodwyn

by Jessica Schwartz

Leigh Goodwyn joined Women’s Impact Fund about 8 years ago and never looked back. After serving as a member for a year, Leigh quickly jumped into deeper involvement by serving on [what was then known as] the Marketing Committee, the Development Committee and eventually, the Board of Directors. Four years ago Leigh and her good friend Leigh-Ann Sprock launched a new business, LeighDeux, which specializes in beautiful textiles for the dorm room. Over the years, LeighDeux has continued to specialize in dorm room décor, but has also transitioned to offer bedding for a wide array of bedding needs.

A devoted philanthropist, Leigh is a featured dancer in the upcoming Dancing with the Stars of Charlotte event, which benefits Carolinas Breast Friends. According to Leigh, The Pink House is “a special place managed by Carolina Breast Friends, and gives women who have been  diagnosed with breast cancer support, care, and hope. Carolina Breast Friends is a charity I have supported since its inception and they are doing so many great things for women in the Charlotte area! I am honoring my mother-in-law, Irene Goodwyn, and all my friends who have been touched by this disease.” Leigh is paired with Felipe Edmiston, and together they are dancing the Argentine Tango. Dancing with the Stars of Charlotte is on April 29th and will feature a dancing winner and a fundraising winner. This year, the event honors the memory of Dr. Teresa Flippo-Morton, who was a breast cancer oncologist. Dr. Flippo-Morton’s widow, Duncan Morton, is also one of the competitors. Leigh is dancer #905 and is currently in 3rd place on the fundraising front. With a few weeks to go she is hoping to get the word out in a big way! For more information on the event, and to support Leigh, visit https://qtego.net/qlink/carolinabreastfriendsdwts.

After getting to know Leigh, it’s clear she’s a major asset to the Charlotte community through her business, philanthropic work, and her involvement in WIF. Here are a few of her responses to the questions I asked during our last conversation.

Why did you decide to join the Women’s Impact Fund? I have a conscious affinity for supporting different charities in Charlotte, and viewed Women’s Impact Fund as a way to learn about a lot of charities at one time and have an impact across many fields. Women’s Impact Fund is a wonderful way to be involved in many things.

What would you tell a friend or colleague who was thinking about joining Women’s Impact Fund? I would say that if you are looking to broaden your network of female connections, if you’re looking to support a number of very worthy charities, and looking to get involved in something that will do a very good job donating your money, WIF is for you. Members can trust how well their money will be used, as there is impressive work done through the various committees. WIF does an extremely good job of researching different grant requests and learning which organization will effectively use the money at hand.

If you could take a class on anything from anyone, what would it be and who would the teacher be? Good question! I would probably want to enroll in the Minor in Entrepreneurship course at the University of Chapel Hill. I currently serve on the board, and they are doing a tremendous job of teaching the curriculum and matching students with entrepreneurs for real life experience. Professor Buck Goldstein teaches class, and I think he’s amazing!

What would people be surprised to learn about you? I feel like an open book! … but maybe that I was in the media business for 20 years.  I got out of the business, moved to Charlotte and was a stay at home mom for years. But prior to that I was the head of International Marketing for Discovery Networks!

What books on your shelf are begging to be read? Definitely the Elon Musk book! There are so many great books on entrepreneurship that I’m wanting to read. I like to read case studies too. If Sara Blakely from Spanx ever writes a book, I’ll read that! Also, Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book.

What is your favorite place to take out-of-town guests? Does it have to be in Charlotte? If not, our house in Kiawah, which is a few hours away. In Charlotte, I’d say Freedom Park because I’m a big runner. A walk down the Booty Loop, a visit to the Mint Museum (both Uptown and Randolph) to see their awesome collection, Discovery Place, and Foxcroft Wine Bar is also a good spot!

If you could have one super power, what would it be, and why? To see the future – so I can make predictions.

What’s the most interesting trip you have ever taken? Kenya, Africa! Our family did a safari three summers ago, and I still think about that trip every day. We spent three weeks in across various parts of Kenya, including the Maasai Mara, the Serengeti, the Great Rift Valley, and Lake Elmenteita. We stayed at the Elephant Watch Camp in Kenya and Giraffe Manor in Nairobi; both were amazing!