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Featured Woman – Cartney McCracken

“I think those psychological self-inflicted pressures are there because it has been ingrained in women since the beginning of time.”

Cartney McCracken

Rainmaker’s Social Media Strategist
And Client Relations Manager
Press Secretary for Letitia Chafin
Blogger – Politico In Stilettos

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Location, Age, and Education:

Charleston, West Virginia; 26; Fashion Marketing Degree from West Virginia University. Currently working on their Graduate Integrated Marketing Communications Program.

Favorite Quote?

“It’s not how good you are, it’s how good you want to be.” ~ Paul Arden

Do You Have Any Advice for Women in General?

Wake up in the morning, put on your a$$ kicking stilettos, add an extra coat of mascara and go out and take over the world.

What Do You Wish You Knew at 22?

I wish I knew what my full potential was. Looking back, there are so many things I wish I could have done…should have done…that I didn’t.

Feel good about yourself everyday and work your butt off because one day you’re going to look back and regret all the things you didn’t do.

Tell Us About Your Jobs and How You Got To Where You Are Today

I’ve always been involved in politics, and I LOVE fashion… so I have two lives. I’ve been a buyer for a boutique in Charleston; it was so exciting as I got to travel to New York, L.A. and Atlanta for markets. I also ended up modeling the products at a lot of the locations we visited.

As for my political life, I pounded the pavement for my current job. I started my search knowing that I wanted to do something in politics and hopefully work with political campaigns. I went around to all the ad agencies and they all got this look of horror when I said the word “political”. Then I found Rainmakers and that’s what they specialize in…Political Campaigns for Democratic Candidates.

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Working at Rainmaker’s has really allowed me to get a lot of experience working on political campaigns that I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere else. I’ve been involved in the political arena since grade school, and it is definitely a passion.

How Did Your Blog Get Started?

A couple friends of mine always said I should do a blog, but they wanted it to be purely fashion. I, however, love politics too much. I thought, “Why not combine my two loves.” Thus, Politico in Stilettos was born.

How do You Handle “Marriage” Pressure From Family and Society?

It’s odd because we are in Charleston, WV, and there are certain assumptions made about women. If I was in New York or something then I’m sure people would say, “Wait as long as you can. Don’t ever get married if you don’t have to.” But, everybody around me is always saying (especially since I’ve been dating my bf for over a year), “When are you getting married? Why haven’t you gotten engaged yet?” Over and over and over…

How Do You Reply?

“It’s none of your business.”

How about we figure out the next step that we want to take as a couple first? How about we figure out what we are doing with our lives first? If you get engaged, that’s all people want to talk about. And then, after marriage it’ll be, “How many kids are you going to have.” Yeesh.

The pressure is mostly regional, but it’s still there. Historically, it has always been said and felt that “everyone needs to get married” and “you should have kids.” I think those psychological self-inflicted pressures are there because it has been ingrained in women since the beginning of time.

Have You Been Close to Marriage?

I was engaged when I was 24 and while I said yes, I now know that it was the wrong thing to say at the wrong time. After we broke up, I moved back to Charleston, WV. Once back, I actually ended up finding my DREAM job, and I am convinced everything happens for a reason.

My mom, who is a very strong woman, always taught me to put myself and my career first. You’ve got the rest of your life to spend with someone. You need to make sure you know who you are and put yourself first before taking that next leap with someone else. I have no problem waiting, or even never getting married.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Waiting Longer to Get Married?

Advantages – More you time. I think this is especially important if you grew up with lots of siblings. You get to go out and live your life, find out who you are, what you like, etc. When you’re married, or have a serious bf, you can’t help but be influenced by them.

Disadvantages – None really.

Fertility is not an issue for me because I’d adopt. IF I have kids, I’ve always known I would adopt a baby rather than have one. I’d much rather save a child and give them a happy life but, I’m not there yet, and I’m in no rush.

Who is a Woman You Look Up To and Why?

My mom. She taught me how to be strong and independent. I watched her never put up with anything…ever…from anyone. She’s the most professional, well put together person I know, and she is a power house.

I’m lucky to come from a long line of very strong women, and I’m always in awe of her. She’s always placed an emphasis on career and taught me that you have to be able to stand on your own two feet. I think that when you’re young and in a relationship, you become the relationship. You’re no longer your own person. It takes time to figure out who you are and depend on yourself both financially and emotionally.

What is the Best Advice You’ve Received?

My dad always says, “Don’t be the sheep.” And, if I ever get stuck in a situation, he says, “Who’s driving the bus?”

Connect with Cartney!

Cartney McCracken

Twitter: @CartneyWV

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