Emily McMahon

emily-mcmahon-rgbAge: 32

Occupation: Owner, Soirée Wedding & Event Planning; Operations Leader, Sculpt; Adjuct Instructor, University of Iowa

What’s the best advice you ever received?
Say yes! Anytime there is an opportunity where you have been invited to participate, lead or make a difference, say yes and commit fully. You never know where it will take you.

What do you consider your greatest professional accomplishments?
My greatest professional achievements include starting my own wedding and event planning company, Soirée, and becoming an adjunct instructor at the University of Iowa.

What do you know now that you wish you had known earlier in your career?
I wish I had started networking and volunteering earlier in my career, because being involved in the community has been so incredibly rewarding.

What’s something people should know about your generation in the workplace?
I attended a lecture about how the generation gap is perpetuated when people speak in generalized “we versus them” terms, and in most situations, the gap between generations is a myth. So I’d like everyone to know that my generation is just like your generation. We are all humans trying to make a difference and find our purpose.

What is the biggest issue facing the Corridor?
Despite the gains women have made in the workforce, the pay gap persists. According to aawu.org, women in Iowa in 2015 made 77 cents for every dollar that men made. Individuals in the workforce, community and government have the ability to help chip away at the pay disparity. I believe this will strengthen our local economy, and can change the lives of families and children.

Who are your local mentors?
It’s challenging to single out only three people that have made a positive impact on my life. I feel shaped and supported by so many wonderful people in our area.