Dallas Native, Magnet School and UT Graduate, Author and"Politichick" Karen Watson is Proud to be a Republican
Karen Watson became enamored with the Republican Party when she was in high school and too young to vote.
She met Ronald Reagan at the ’84 Republican National Convention in Dallas – as a high school student – and she remembers, “The WHOLE convention had that “WOW” factor!” The theme of the convention was “it’s a new morning in America,” and it resonated with the high school student.
“Reagan had this personality, you felt you knew him, you felt he knew you, he cared, he was incredibly personable,” Karen says, “He won 49 states! Think about that – in this world of division – that was so amazing… We had this feeling of all being together as one in America, the ‘we are the champions’ vibe. There’s a very different feeling in politics today.”
Karen says, “We need this message now: we must share the great story of the Republican Party. Be bold--but speak gently.”
Born and raised in Oak Cliff, Karen attended Government and Law Magnet High School in downtown Dallas before heading off to UT-Austin to obtain her Degree in Liberal Arts with a Speech minor. She became a banker, working first for NationsBank that later merged with Bank America and eventually became Bank of America. Along the way, she decided to start her own mortgage business, Karen Watson Mortgage, in 2004 and currently serves the real estate community in North Texas.
She along with Larry Eng and Mark Aldridge created GOPBuzz.com in 2012, an Internet portal for Republican events nationwide. Her goal is to answer this simple question: “How do we get people to understand what this party is about? That conservative values are the right values for all Americans, regardless of race or gender.”
To this end, Karen, a Texas Politichick, has written three books including, Being Black and Republican in the Age of Obama, How the Democrats stole the black vote and How the Republicans can win it back and Jackass: the true story of the Democrat Party.
Karen believes that, “If we show people what is going on locally for them – and all politics is local, when you get down to it - you can connect people to the party. Then they can decide for themselves how they want to get involved.”
Growing up in Oak Cliff as one of four children, Karen had an older brother and has two younger siblings. She said the hardest time of her life was when her big brother Andrew died of a heart attack at age 50. Burton and Marian are younger.
She felt fortunate to attend the Government and Law Magnet High School downtown near city hall on Ervay. “There were 17 in my graduating class!” she says with a laugh, so that meant no cliques.
Karen kept busy with a part-time job selling ice cream at a shop called Frozen Fantasies. “It was on the corner of Greenville Avenue and Mockingbird, where the 24-hour Fitness is now. Back then there was a burger shop, a pizza shop, a donut place and my ice cream shop, and we would barter with each other: ‘Want some ice cream? I’ll trade you for a burger.’ It was a lot of fun—and really great ice cream!”
Now her former high school is part of the cluster of schools at Yvonne Ewell Magnet, and has been renamed the Barefoot Sanders Law Magnet.
Karen admits she didn’t know what she wanted to be when she grew up and is still deciding whether to run for political office one day. As a single woman with only a “fur baby” – her dog Ruby, a lab-collie mix – she can work unusual and long hours that a demanding campaign requires.
Karen proud is a member of the National Federation of Republican Women (NFRW) and is grateful for all the work they have done to expand the Republican Party.
“The first contact I had with them was with a woman named Michele over the phone. She invited me to come to Shreveport, Louisiana, to her lunch meeting, and because I hate to drive, I took a friend along.” She says she had no idea where Shreveport was, and once she got to the restaurant for the meeting, she and Larry waited for others to arrive.
“Michele came in and went back out and then came in again,” Karen laughs, “Then she came over to me and said, ‘Are you Karen?’ We’d spoken on the phone many times, but had never seen each-other, so she didn’t know what to expect.”
Michele went on to say, ‘You know, I just never for once thought you were black and Republican. You need to write a book about being black and a Republican,’”
Three books later, Karen is now a sought-after speaker and political consultant.
One thing about her that surprises people is “I’m shorter than what most people expect!”
Tiny in stature, but big in influence, Karen Watson is ready to make the world a better place one election at a time.
For more information on GOPBuzz.com go to http://gopbuzz.com/ or contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org