Texas, Her Texas is the fascinating story of Frances Goff and her three remarkable careers: in Texas government as legislative aide and state budget director; at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center; and as director of the Bluebonnet Girls State Program of the American Legion Auxilliary. Based on Goff’s personal papers and interviews with those who knew her, the book provides inside glimpses of such leaders in state politics as Coke Stevenson, Allan Shivers, and Ann Richards. The fast-paced narrative also describes the founding and early years of M. D. Anderson and Goff’s key role as an aide to Dr. R. Lee Clark in building this world-renowned cancer treatment facility.
At the core of the book is the Bluebonnet Girls State Program, an annual citizenship session for young Texas women that Goff directed for four decades. More than twenty-thousand high school girls experienced Goff’s charismatic leadership and took to heart her message of public service and involvement. Texas, Her Texas makes a major contribution to a better understanding of how this voluntary women’s group is shaping present-day Texas.
Frances Goff knew the movers and shakers of Texas and became one herself. Goff’s biography will inspire those who knew her and those who are learning about her for the first time. She was, says Ann Richards, a “grand lioness of a woman.”
Nancy Beck Young is a professor of history at the University of Houston.
Lewis L. Gould is the Eugene C. Barker Centennial Professor Emeritus in American History at the University of Texas at Austin.