A passion for portraying the human figure is reflected in the work of Glenna Goodacre. Ranging from small head studies to heroic public monuments, her bronzes are alive with expression and movement. Her most well-known work is the Vietnam Women's Memorial installed in Washington, D.C. in 1993.
Goodacre's ability to capture emotion in sculptural form has been perfected over several decades of an award-winning career. After graduation from Colorado College and study at the Art Students League in New York, she became a successful painter, then, nearly 35 years ago, she made a 6-inch bronze of her young daughter and quickly turned to sculpture. In 1998, her 7½-foot standing portrait of Ronald Reagan was unveiled at the Reagan Library in California. A bronze cast of the same figure is at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. In 2003, she completed a heroic figure of legendary West Point Coach Colonel Earl "Red" Blaik for the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Indiana. It was unveiled in May, 2004. Goodacre has more than 50 other bronze portraits in public collections in the United States, including sculptures of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Barbara Jordan, Katherine Anne Porter, Scott Joplin, Greer Garson, Dan Blocker, and General "Hap" Arnold.
In 2000, Goodacre's rendering of Sacagawea, the Native American interpreter for explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, appeared on the face of a new dollar coin issued by the U.S. Mint. Goodacre's design depicting the Shoshone teenager with her infant son was selected for its "remarkable emotional depth" from among 121 entries by 20 invited artists. Goodacre's concept was unveiled by First Lady Hillary Clinton at the White house in 1999. In 1997, Goodacre was selected as the winning sculptor for the monumental Irish Memorial for Philadelphia. Completed and unveiled in 2003 at Penn's Landing, the massive bronze is Glenna's most ambitious public sculpture—with 35 life-size figures, and it is a favorite stop for Philadelphia's many visitors.
An academician of the National Academy of Design since 1994 and a fellow of the National Sculpture Society since 1981, Goodacre has won many awards at their New York exhibitions. Goodacre has received honorary doctorates from her alma mater Colorado College, and from Texas Tech University in her hometown of Lubbock. In 2002, she won the James Earl Fraser Sculpture Award at the Prix De West Exhibition. In 2003, she was awarded the Gold Medal For Career Achievement from The Portrait Society of America, the Texas Medal Of Arts, and she was inducted into the Cowgirl Hall Of Fame.
Glenna Goodacre divides her time between Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she has maintained a studio since 1983, and Dallas, Texas, where her husband, C. L. "Mike" Schmidt, has a law practice, the Schmidt Firm.
—-Daniel R. Anthony