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A renowned physical education teacher in the current age, Dr. Joyce M. Curtis exhibited a hunger for learning and discovering a range of sports from a formative age. Deciding thereon to pursue physical education and health as a career path, she soon earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from the University of North Texas. One decade later, she also earned a doctorate in physical education from Indiana University, where she also served as a graduate assistant during her doctoral studies from 1967 to 1970. After receiving an undergraduate degree in 1959, Dr. Curtis began teaching as a teacher of physical education at Abilene Christian University. She held this role for a resounding 45 years until her retirement in 2004 as professor.

Demonstrating versatility in her profession, Dr. Curtis has authored and co-authored numerous books and articles related to physical education and sports. Most notably, she authored “Pickle-Ball for Player and Teacher” in 1985, which entered its third edition in 1999. Likewise, she wrote “Intermediate Bowling Notebook for Teacher” in 1993, “Manual for Badminton Teachers” in 1985 and “Manual for Bowling Teachers” in 1982. In 1971, she further served as a co-editor of “Physical Education Activities Handbook.”

Among the highlights of her career, Dr. Curtis is noted for leading a co-ed badminton team to various competitions and tournaments throughout the states of Texas and Oklahoma for the Women’s Recreation Association at Abilene Christian University. In addition, she developed a number of basketball and volleyball teams that competed well enough to be invited to prominent tournaments. She is also notable for starting the women’s athletic program at Abilene Christian University.

As a testament to her success, Dr. Curtis has accrued myriad accolades and honors. Most recently, she earned Pathfinder Awards from the Texas Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance in 2008 and the National Association for Girls and Women in Sports 2009. Further, she was inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame at Abilene Christian University in 2003, having previously been awarded by the university with a Volleyball Wildcat Award and Faculty Development Award. Earlier in her career, she received a Distinguished Service Award from the Texas Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women and was named an Outstanding Educator of America.

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