Childhood & Early Life
Kellyanne Conway was born Kellyanne Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, on January 20, 1967, in Atco, New Jersey, U.S., to John and Diane Fitzpatrick. She is of Italian, German, Irish, and English ancestry. She was raised in a middle-class family. Her father owned a small trucking company, and her mother was a bank employee.
Kellyanne was mostly raised by a single mother, as her father divorced her mother when Kellyanne was 3 years old. However, Diane found it difficult to raise her daughter by herself and took help from her mother and two unmarried sisters.
Kellyanne Conway was an extroverted child and worked at a blueberry farm when she was a teenager. She worked there even while continuing her high-school education at the ‘St. Joseph’s High School’ in the Waterford Township. She also participated in beauty pageants and won the ‘New Jersey Blueberry Princess Beauty’ contest in 1982.
While in high school, she participated in many extra-curricular activities. She sang in the school choir, played sports, and was on the cheerleading team of the school. She later claimed that she had learned the value of hard work while working at the blueberry farms in her teenage years. At 20, she participated in the ‘Blueberry Packing’ competition and won.
She graduated high school in 1985. She then moved to Washington D.C., to attend the famous ‘Trinity College,’ eventually earning a degree in political science. Back then, she was developing an interest in politics. She then joined the ‘George Washington University Law School’ and obtained her Juris Doctor degree in 1992.
Continue Reading Below
Kellyanne Conway began her career as a pollster when she was in law school. Back then, she was working with a polling firm named the ‘Wirthlin Group.’ After obtaining her Juris Doctor degree, she considered working for a law firm, but a career as a pollster seemed more interesting to her. She worked with a few firms, before she began her own polling firm, ‘The Polling Company,’ which was founded in 1995.
She initially worked with many companies, such as ‘American Express’ and ‘Vaseline,’ to make them aware about consumer trends, especially the ones related to women customers. This helped the companies work in a better way to cater to their female consumer base. She also worked with many male politicians from the ‘Republican Party,’ to make them appear more relatable to female voters.
She, along with Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter, began some sort of a “sexual awakening” in the national capital. They were collectively called “pundettes” and were known for having “beauty with brains.” They also appeared on Bill Maher’s famous political show ‘Politically Incorrect.’
Kellyanne Conway has made several appearances on TV, as an expert on polls and America’s political scene. She has appeared on ‘Fox News,’ ‘CNN,’ ‘CBS,’ ‘NBC,’ and ‘ABC.’ She has also appeared on various radio programs.
She correctly predicted the 2004 election results and was awarded with a ‘Crystal Ball’ by the ‘Washington Post’ for this feat.
However, while working as a pollster and a political analyst, she had been accused of siding with the ‘Republican Party’ on many instances.
In 2001, she began living in the ‘Trump World Tower,’ located in Manhattan, New York. Since then, she had been known as one of Trump’s close aides. She lived in the building until 2008. Despite that, she did not initially endorse Trump as the presidential candidate from the ‘Republican Party’ and sided with Ted Cruz instead.
She was one of the top members in the pro-Cruz political action committee known as ‘Keep the Promise I.’ She tried her best to endorse Ted as the presidential candidate from the ‘Republican Party.’ She launched vicious attacks on Trump, calling him an “extreme” politician who was “not a conservative.” In June 2016, when Trump’s nomination had almost become certain, Ted quit his campaign.
She changed sides quickly, in less than a month, and was hired by Donald Trump to be his senior advisor during his presidential campaign. She was supposed to make Trump impress his female voter base. Impressed by her work, Trump promoted her as one of his campaign managers. She ran the campaign until the day of the voting and remains the first-ever female campaign manager for a ‘Republican Party’ presidential candidate.
Continue Reading Below
Trump won the election, and when he entered the ‘White House,’ he offered Kellyanne Conway a job in his close circle. She stated on ‘Twitter’ that she could have any job she wanted. This showed how impressed Trump was with her political knowledge. However, she was criticized by Trump for publicly revealing the hiring process of the ‘White House.’
In December 2016, she was hired as a counselor to the president. However, her tenure has been extremely controversial since its beginning. Many eye-witnesses claimed that she had punched a man during President Trump’s swearing-in party. However, nobody mentioned how the fistfight had started.
She appeared in an interview 2 days after Trump’s inauguration and used the words “alternative facts” to defend a statement made by Sean Spicer about the crowd present at the inauguration. The words were from George Orwell’s dystopian novel ‘1984.’ Following her statement, the sales of the book skyrocketed.
She was dragged into controversies shortly after she entered the ‘White House.’ In a February 2017 interview, she referred to the “Bowling Green Massacre” in order to defend Trump’s immigration ban on a few Muslim-majority countries. It was a made-up Iraqi terrorist attack that had not taken place. Upon criticism, she said that she had meant “Bowling Green Terrorists,” referring to the arrest of two Iraqi terrorists in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
In February 2017, she was criticized for releasing false claims about the national security advisor, Michael Flynn. A senior ‘Washington Post’ columnist said that she needed to be banned from TV appearances after such repeated inaccuracies in her comments. She did not appear on any TV show for a week after that, and it was rumored that the ‘White House’ had parted ways with her.
Family & Personal Life
Kellyanne Conway describes herself as a “Generation X” conservative. She is pro-life and against abortion.
She avoids using the tag of a feminist and says that according to her, feminism is an “anti-men” sentiment.
She has dated the late senator Fred Thompson.
She married George Conway, a popular American attorney, in 2001. The couple has four children together. The family lives in New Jersey.
Donald Trump is known to have issues with her husband, George. Trump once described him as a “stone cold loser & a husband from hell.” This was in response to George’s public statement that said Trump was suffering from a mental disorder.
In a 2018 interview, she stated that she had been a victim of sexual assault in the past.