March is Women’s History Month, a time to celebrate the contributions of women in all aspects of our society. WhatsUpNewp reached out to successful women in several professions, asking just a few questions. We will run their responses throughout the month.

Rep. Lauren H. Carson, D – District 75 (Newport)

WUN: What one, two or three women have inspired you? Please also tell us why these individuals have been important to you.

REP. CARSON: Well, I have a few answers.  My grandmother was a terrific woman with endless energy.  She was a committed wife, mother and grandmother, but she was also very committed to her neighborhood, her church and her community. As I grew up, I watched her commit countless hours to community projects because she really wanted to make a difference.  She would be thrilled that I followed in her footsteps and am so active in both Newport and State affairs.

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Furthermore, I attended an all girls’ high school, and during those formative years, I saw young women in the school’s leadership positions. As I watched and participated, I learned that women are leaders.  I often look back on those years and I know they influenced much of my thinking about women as leaders. 

WUN: What have been some of the obstacles you have encountered, and how you overcame them?

REP. CARSON: We all face obstacles and challenges as we pursue our goals. I look back on my professional life and know that my determination and self confidence

has guided me to achieve the goal of elected office. When I mentor young women or work with interns, I always tell them that there is much to learn, to stay focused, don’t be afraid to make mistakes and always aim high. 

WUN: What advice would you give to a young woman starting out on her career?

As I already indicated, women leaders have a responsibility to mentor young women.  Encourage them to stand tall, to be brave and ask alot of questions. Always keep your word, take the high road and don’t burn bridges. Integrity is key to long term personal and professional success.