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Why These Entrepreneurs Are Running for Public Office (Even at the Risk of Their Businesses)



“There are, of course, advantages to approaching politics with an entrepreneurial mindset. Megan Hunt, an Omaha-based entrepreneur running for the state senate, attributes much of her early momentum to her business attitude. Hunt runs a fashion boutique called Hello Holiday; prior to launching her nine-person business, she started a bridal wear startup that she grew to around $100,000 in revenue.

“I know what it’s like when your dream is bigger than your bank account,” Hunt explains. “That’s entrepreneurship. You have to be scrappy, and you have to be creative.” To her point, when Hunt–a single mother–first launched Hello Holiday, she was on Medicaid and food stamps, earning just $300 a month. Now, the business generates hundreds of thousands in annual sales.

“You have to be willing to sacrifice some things for a long-term vision,” she says. “Fundamentally, that’s the mindset of any effective leader.” That’s the same energy she’s now channeling into her local campaign.

A centuries-old problem

To be sure, the greatest challenge that these candidates face is sexism. Hunt, for her part, says she won’t date during the election cycle, for fear of being labeled lewd. “The opposition is coming after me, saying I’m really promiscuous,” Hunt says. “They would never say that about a man.””


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