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Kellyanne Elizabeth Conway (née Fitzpatrick; born January 20, 1967) is a Republican strategist and pollster. She is president and CEO of The Polling Company, Inc./WomanTrend, and a regular political commentator on CNN. After initially supporting Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz, she became the eventual Republican nominee Donald J. Trump's Campaign Manager on August 17, 2016. In this role, she helped Trump to win the presidential election on November 9, 2016, as Trump defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton, winning the electoral college. Conway became the first female campaign manager for a winning presidential candidate.
Before entering politics, Conway pursued a career in law. After receiving her B.A. in Political Science from Trinity College, Washington, D.C., she earned a law degree from George Washington University Law Center and then clerked for a judge in Washington, D.C. She also spent four years as an adjunct professor at George Washington University Law Center.
After practicing law, Conway entered the polling business with Wirthlin Group, a GOP polling firm which worked for Ronald Reagan. She also worked for a period for Luntz Research Research Companies before founding her own firm, The Polling Company, in 1995. Among the political figures Conway has worked for are the late Congressman Jack Kemp; former Vice President Dan Quayle; Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich; Senator Fred Thompson and Congressman (now Indiana Governor) Mike Pence. She worked as the senior advisor to Newt Gingrich during his 2012 United States presidential election campaign. In August 2015, she became the president of the Promise I Super-PAC which supports the 2016 presidential campaign of Ted Cruz and is part of a group of 4 super-PACs supporting Cruz. Its main funding was 11 million dollars from hedgefund manager Robert Mercer.
In addition to her political opinion research work, Conway has directed demographic and attitudinal survey projects for trade associations and private companies, including American Express, ABC News, Major League Baseball, and Ladies Home Journal. Her firm The Polling Company also includes WomanTrend, a research and consulting division created to better connect corporate America with the female consumer. WomanTrend monitors female consumers as well as a multitude of current and prospective lifestyle, home, work, entertainment, technological, and generational trends affecting all consumers.
Conway has been featured frequently as a commentator on polling and the political scene, having appeared on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, and the Fox News Channel, in addition to various radio programs. She has received the Washington Post's “Crystal Ball” award for accurately predicted elections. In 2012, in an interview with the Family Research Council, Conway compared Republican criticism of Todd Akin (R-MO), one of Conway's clients, to the siege in 1993 of cult leader David Koresh. An Akin representative said that Conway's comments were "stupid". Conway said she was not comparing Akin to Koresh, but instead comparing the FBI's tactics to force Koresh out with the Republican's tactics to force Akin out of the 2012 election.
Born as Kellyanne Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, she was raised in South Jersey. She is married to George T. Conway III, a litigation partner at the law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. The couple has four children and lived in the New York City area, until after the 2016 Presidential campaign.. She is of Irish and Italian descent. In December 2016, Conway was named as Special Counsel to then President-elect Donald Trump. She continues to serve in that role under President Trump's administration. Conway and her family moved to Washington, due to her new role.
Conway and Democratic pollster Celinda Lake co-authored What Women Really Want: How American Women Are Quietly Erasing Political, Racial, Class, and Religious Lines to Change the Way We Live (Free Press/Simon and Schuster, 2005; ISBN 0-7432-7382-6)
Mass Connections, Inc. commissioned Conway's research services to inform Volumes 1–3 of the Touch America series, including The Consumer Connection, The Shopper Connection, and Connecting with Consumers ... IN STORE· ON LINE· IN LIFE.
- "Kellyanne Conway biography". pollingcompany.com. Retrieved 2008-02-23.
- Gingrich: "the next 10 days are the most important", foxnewsinsider.com, January 11, 2012; accessed September 13, 2015.
- Michael Falcone (August 4, 2015) The Note: Donald Trump on Top ABC News
- McDermott, Kevin (September 28, 2012). "Akin consultant compares GOP attacks to the siege on Waco". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 30, 2012.
- Touch America, Mass Connections.