Karly Matthews

No matter the political climate, conservative women seem to be a minority on the political spectrum, but that doesn’t mean that we are any less motivated or driven as we pursue our goals and promote our principles.

That said, we conservative women really do have plenty of support when it comes to accomplished role models in the political field. From Nikki Haley to Peggy Grande to Laura Bush, there are so many women who have made a difference in our country’s history by adhering to their belief systems and working incredibly hard.

When I think about my ideological development and career goals, I have to turn Dana Perino, who was the first female Republican White House Press Secretary under Bush 43. Perino came from humble beginnings in Wyoming, but she worked her way through the communications world until after 9/11, she felt a call to serve her country in the White House.

I consider Dana Perino a true role model for young women of any political ideology because she evaluates issues as she sees them, not through an overly-partisan lens. Her arguments are fair and reasonable, and she is always the image of civility. On Fox News’ The Five, as well as The Daily Briefing, she always seems to bring everyone back down to Earth, back down to reason.

Of course, I admire many things about Dana Perino. That said, I especially love her first book, And the Good News Is…, so much because it exemplifies everything I associate with the conservative movement. Throughout most of the work, Perino details the incredibly long days and draining work that is required of any White House Press Secretary with some chapters about her personal life and life after the White House.

Within the White House chapters, she discusses the strain that the job had on her relationships, her daily routine and, to be frank, her emotions. Media bias against President Bush, whom Perino and her staff adored, was frustrating and even hurtful. Sometimes, it seems that no matter what happened at the Press Secretary’s podium, the story was never what the administration wanted. Even with all these factors, though, she persevered because she believed she was helping an effort that was bettering the United States. She still did her job to the best of her ability while being married to the love of her life and parenting an adorable Vizsla named Henry.

The focus of the entire book is not just on her ideology or the fact that she worked for a Republican president. She also gives valuable advice to any young professional who is trying to succeed after college. Perino paints herself as a mentor, training young readers on proper email and interviewing etiquette. As any role model would do, she passes along her knowledge to those who would listen, and of course, open her book.

I hold And the Good News Is… in such high regard because the work changed my outlook on politics. Perino remained positive and driven even as she maintained one of the hardest jobs in any presidential administration. She learned to work around the bad in people and embrace the good. She learned that with hard work and dedication, almost anything is possible. She learned that although politics is nasty and cruel, it is all done to pursue the principles that make this nation truly great.