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Meet Trailblazer Kim Richards

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kim Richards.

Kim, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started my career in public relations thinking it was a natural first step with a communications degree. My internship in college was with Edelman in Silicon Valley, a top global PR agency, which made it exciting and fast-paced. For the eight years following, I immersed myself in the life sciences industry working with an agency managing media and investor relations. The science was complex and it challenged me – as a non-scientist – to understand the concepts well enough to translate data into compelling stories. By 2011, I knew it was time for a change.

While seeking new connections and opportunities, I discovered an incredible network of entrepreneurial women in San Diego who became my inspiration. It wasn’t long before I took the leap of faith into entrepreneurship and started an agency of my own, KDR PR, in early 2011. For five years, I worked with dozens of K-16 schools and educational organizations and built a community of STEAM enthusiasts from across the world driven to change how we think about STEM, arts and creativity in education. It was life-changing for five years.

Most recently, I had the unique opportunity to work with Digital Promise to support a large-scale transformation at Vista High School by building systems and infrastructure for communications, partnerships and media exposure. It was there I discovered the power of clarity in binding a school community together.

In October 2018, my sweet daughter entered the world and my world changed. I had another opportunity to reinvent myself and I did. In June this year, I set out to restart KDR PR with a new focus – this time creating and delivering resources and programs for school leaders to lead and communicate with clarity.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There were plenty of struggles along the way like navigating team dynamics, client relations, everything that goes into launching a new business for the first time, outsourcing contract work and much more. But now, I have the benefit of putting all of that knowledge to work in my new venture. My advice is to be patient with the early days in your career and enjoy it as much as you can. Align yourself with mentors who are willing to guide you along the way, and network, network, network.

We’d love to hear more about KDR PR.
The new direction at KDR PR is a blend of more than 15 years of experience in corporate, nonprofit, entrepreneurship and community development. My core program is built on the premise that a school leader’s clarity has the power to make or break culture and the learning environment. The 3-step process provides school leaders with grounding, clarity and a new system for outreach and communications, so their communities thrive.

So much of the media coverage is focused on the challenges facing women today, but what about the opportunities? Do you feel there are any opportunities that women are particularly well-positioned for?
Don’t be shy. Know what you’re looking for and find the people who can help you. If you have a career focus in mind or industry of interest, start by looking for a related industry association or a local thought leader and upcoming events you can attend. Those same industry associations often have mentoring programs where you have the opportunity to work with a mentor. What has worked best for me is to keep networking no matter what. You never know what connection or opportunity will be just around the corner.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
personal photo: Dayley Photography

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