Judge Joseph R. Goodwin, Southern West Virginia U.S. District Court

Judge Joseph R. Goodwin

Southern West Virginia U.S. District Court

Joseph Robert Goodwin was born in December 1942 in Ripley, West Virginia. He earned an undergraduate degree from West Virginia University. He joined the U.S. Army Adjutant General Corps during the Vietnam War. He would later earn a Juris Doctor from West Virginia University College of Law.

He was a city attorney for Ripley and then a municipal judge before entering private practice in Charleston, West Virginia.

Goodwin was nominated by President Bill Clinton to a seat on the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia. He was confirmed by the Senate and received his commission in May 1995. He served five years as the chief judge.

In the News…

A recent challenge to the West Virginia’s Save Women’s Sports Act would have allowed males who identify as females to compete in girls’ and women’s sports.

Federal District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin ruled against the challenge. In his decision, he wrote: “While some females may be able to outperform some males, it is generally accepted that the average males outperform females athletically because of the inherent physical differences between the sexes.”

He continued, “This is not an overbroad generalization, but rather a general principle that realistically reflects the average physical differences between the sexes. Given [the challenger’s] concession that circulating testosterone in males creates a biological difference in athletic performance, I do not see how I could find that the state’s classification based on biological sex is not substantially related to its interest in providing equal athletic opportunities for females.”

Judge Goodwin noted that men and women are fundamentally and biologically different. “It Is beyond dispute that, barring rare genetic mutations…a person either has male sex chromosomes or female sex chromosomes and a transgender girl is a biological male.”

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Judge Goodwin today? You can let him know at:

The Honorable Joseph R. Goodwin
Southern West Virginia U.S. District Court
6610 Robert C. Byrd U.S. Courthouse
300 Virginia Street East
Charleston, WV 25301


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