David Petraeus scandal: Paula Broadwell voted homecoming queen in high school

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  • Paula Broadwell, then known as Paula Kranz, graduated from Century High School in Bismarck, North Dakota, in 1991
  • Named homecoming queen, valedictorian and student council president
  • Classmate says she was focused on her studies and 'didn't go out and party'

By Laura Collins and Thomas Durante

PUBLISHED: 11:51 EST, 12 November 2012 | UPDATED: 12:18 EST, 12 November 2012

Before she went 'All In' with David Petraeus, biographer Laura Broadwell was an overachiever at a North Dakota high school, where she was named student council president and valedictorian.

She was even named homecoming queen and voted 'most likely to be remembered.'

Broadwell, who was then Laura Kranz, attended Century High School in Bismarck, and graduated in 1991.

She was known among her classmates as a go-getter who did not get sucked into the early 90s teen party scene.

Driven to succeed: Known then as Paula Kranz, Broadwell was named student council president and valedictorian at Century High School in Bismark, North Daokta

Driven to succeed: Known then as Paula Kranz, Broadwell was named student council president and valedictorian at Century High School in Bismark, North Daokta

Queen and king: Paula Broadwell is pictured with her homecoming king Mike McCormick, who says the future Petraeus mistress was focused on her studies

Queen and king: Paula Broadwell is pictured with her homecoming king Mike McCormick, who says the future Petraeus mistress was focused on her studies

Her homecoming king, Mike McCormick told the New York Post: 'She was devoted and studied and worked hard to get good grades. She didn’t really go out and party like high-school kids do.' 

Mr McCormick, 40, told the paper that he was surprised by the allegations that she carried on an extramarital affair with Gen David Petraeus as she followed him around while writing his biography.

The statement was echoed by friends of Broadwell, who said the allegations of an affair with America's top intelligence official was out of character.

David Bixler, a wounded soldier who met Broadwell through a charity in 2010, told ABC News: 'I have some serious questions about who is connecting these dots... Paula Broadwell is not the type... she isn't.'

She lives with her husband Scott, a radiologist, and their two children in a suburban Charlotte, North Carolina, neighborhood.

Ed Williams, a neighbor who lives two houses down from the Broadwell family in Charlotte, North Carolina, neighborhood, told Reuters: 'Everyone is surprised and shocked.'

Getting along: Broadwell met Petraeus in 2006 when she was a student at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the two casually exchanged emails for two years

Getting along: Broadwell met Petraeus in 2006 when she was a student at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the two casually exchanged emails for two years

Husband: Broadwell is married to Dr Scott Broadwell, a radiologist

Husband: Broadwell is married to Dr Scott Broadwell, a radiologist

Castle: Paula Broadwell lives with her husband Scott and their two children in this home, located in a suburb of Charlotte, North Carolina

Castle: Paula Broadwell lives with her husband Scott and their two children in this home, located in a suburb of Charlotte, North Carolina

Earlier in the week, Williams, a retired editor, saw Broadwell with her two children when she was voting in last week's U.S. presidential election.

He told Reuters that Broadwell appeared chatty and cheerful. Neighbors were working on putting together a belated party to celebrate the release of her book.

Broadwell's father Paul Kranz, a retired high school basketball coach, sprung to his daughter’s defense today.

Mr Kranz told MailOnline that the shock of the past few days is 'just the beginning of a process.'

Family: Broadwell's father Paul Kranz, left, said he is standing by his daughter. Her mother, Nadene Kranz, is pictured right

He spoke briefly this morning on the snow-covered drive of his modest bungalow in Bismarck, North Dakota, where he lives with wife Nadene.

He said: 'I've been advised by attorneys not to talk right now. This is private property.

'I hope you understand this is the beginning of a process. I can't say more than that. I couldn't if I wanted to.'

From Century High School, Broadwell moved on to the West Point Military Academy in New York.

She met Petraeus in 2006 when she was a student at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the two casually exchanged emails for two years.

In 2008, Broadwell bonded with Petraeus while interviewing the four-star general during runs on the Potomac River as she pursued her Ph D in public policy.

Affair: Broadwell is pictured just behind Petraeus as he walks with his wife Holly at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing

Affair: Broadwell is pictured just behind Petraeus as he walks with his wife Holly at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing

'A few months into my research, General Petraeus, who was then leading Central Command, invited me to go for a run with him and his team along the Potomac River during one of his visits to Washington,' she writes in the biography, titled All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.

'I figured I could interview him while we ran.'

She explained that, after earning varsity letters in cross-country and indoor and outdoor track, she wanted to test him to see if he could keep up with her as she interviewed him.

'Instead it became a test for me,' she said. 'As we talked during the run from the Pentagon to the Washington Monument and back, Petraeus progressively increased the pace until the talk turned to heavy breathing and we reached a six-minute-per-mile pace. It was a signature Petraeus move.'

Promoting the book on The Daily Show with John Stewart in January, she insisted that these mile-long runs together were nothing out of the ordinary.

On TV: Promoting the book on The Daily Show with John Stewart in January, Broadwell insisted that these mile-long runs together were nothing out of the ordinary

On TV: Promoting the book on The Daily Show with John Stewart in January, Broadwell insisted that these mile-long runs together were nothing out of the ordinary

'This is a typical mechanism for him to get to know young people,' she said. 'He's done it throughout his life. That was the foundation of our relationship.'

In another often awkward radio interview in January, host Don Imus said that the pair must have 'obviously' liked each other.

She responded: 'You know, as I said earlier, he has a number of mentees and that's one thing that's different when you compare him to other Senior Commanders.

'But, yeah, we had a lot of rapport. I think some of that comes from a common ground of having gone to West Point [to the U.S. Military Academy].'

Of her reported rival, she added: 'He is married to Holly Petraeus, who is a wonderful military spouse and done so much for their children and for children of fallen soldiers. I respect her immensely.'

The book's description explains how Broadwell conducted research for three years and was 'afforded extensive access by General Petraeus, his mentors, his subordinates and his longtime friends.'

Its website adds Broadwell was embedded in Afghanistan with Petraeus for a year between July 2010 and 2011.

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