CAROLYN B. LEONARD, granddaughter of Oklahoma homesteaders, former
rural newspaper editor, winner of many journalistic contests, published in local, state and national publications, contributed to the best-seller “In Their Name,” a state-endorsed book on the Murrah Federal Building bombing in Oklahoma City.  A commissioned writer more than 14 years for Persimmon Hill, the award-winning magazine of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum and is author of the newly released history and travel photo book, To Israel, With Love,”  her 80,000 word non-fiction illustrated manuscript, a travel and history book of that country which she has visited twice in reality and many times in her dreams. While there she rode a camel on a dare.

Another book, “Who’s Your Daddy? A Guide to Genealogy from Start to Finish” remains popular. Both are available from

She is a popular speaker at workshops, organizations, fairs and festivals, especially when talking about her favorite subjects, genealogy and writing.

Leonard’s historical novel & several non-fiction manuscripts have claimed awards in state and national competition, but remain incomplete. She plans to finish them all this year (every year), but her hobbies of flower gardening, photography, genealogy, travel, computer networking, writer meetings, friends, family and grandchildren habitually interfere – and not necessarily in that order.

She received the highest honor of the prestigious Oklahoma Writers Federation when she was named Honorary Lifetime member. 

It’s all about ... me
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Favorite quote: I’d rather live my whole life believing that God exists and then die and find out he doesn’t, rather than living my whole life not believing in him, then die to find out he does exist.

Here’s the boring stuff:

  1. Graduate of Oklahoma City University, BA 1993

  2. Movie extra in “Bringing Up Bobby” 2010

  3. TV Interviews with Read About It, OETA.

  4. Member ISFHWE - International Society of Family History Writers & Editors

  5. Member of

  6. Former Editor of the Oklahoma Genealogical Society newsletter

  7. Member of the OGS Board of Directors more than seven years.

  8. Past president & current Board member of Oklahoma City Writers.

  9. Current Board Member & Publicity Director of Edmond Genealogical Soc.

  10. Editor & publisher of the Writers Reminder E-zine, since 2007-subscribers 1,129

  11. Member OK Writers Federation Board of Directors & two terms as President.

  12. Past Pres. & Charter Member of Writers of Purple Sage.

  13. 25-year member of Mayflower Descendants Society, #538-38,149

  14. Coordinator National Low Dutch Cousins Gathering bi-annually in Kentucky

  15. Member of International Society of Family History Writers 

  16. Member of First Families of the Twin Territories of Oklahoma, # 3056

  17. Member of Servants Dinner Club, now in 15th year of restaurant reviews

  18. Member of historical societies in Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, more

  19. Member of Evergreen Travel Club & Affordable Travel Club

  20. 1st Vice Regent of Oklahoma Prairies DAR, two terms, #809560

  21. Associate of Daughters of Holland Dames, #A-74

  22. Member of Daughters of War of 1812, #29169

  23. Honorary Colonel of Kentucky, 2007

  24. Who’s Who of American Women, 1998 to present.

  25. Who’s Who in the World 2003 to present

  26. Who’s Who in America 2012 to present

  27. Honored Blogger of the 2012 Family History Expo


Leonard was born near Buffalo in far northwest OK in a rural home without plumbing or electricity, to Ernest and Imogene Branch, farmers. We didn’t consider ourselves in poverty, she said, because our neighbors and peers lived the same way.

Twenty years ago I moved to the "big city" for a better job, and unexpectedly met and fell in love with a widowed engineer at a church event. Coming from a brown-eyed family, his captivating glacier-blue eyes soon made me forget my vow to never marry again, and all six of our children happily "gave" us in marriage.


My engineer, also known as "left brain," and our pampered mixed-breed Boston, Ginger, live in Oklahoma City. We love life and enjoy traveling and being with fun people. To Israel, with Love is the story of our travels to the Middle East. My book, "Who's Your Daddy?" is a natural extension of my 30-year experience in finding my way over and around brick walls to discover our family's place in history. The accomplishment is a life-changing experience, and I hope that something I have written will help others.

She now lives in Oklahoma City with her retired engineer hubby, Jon Heavener. She is currently working on a non-fiction book about the Low Dutch who settled New Netherland and later settled in Kentucky.  She also still operates the wheat farm in far northwestern Oklahoma where she grew up.

I am a professional writer, genealogist, photographer, reader, wife, mother, and Nana. I have several books in process and two books available on “To Israel, With Love,” and  “Who’s Your Daddy? A Guide to Genealogy from Start to Finish” 

You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.