Katherine “Kate” Craig was raised in the Appalachian Mountains of Northeast Tennessee. She attended Towne Acres Elementary School and Liberty Bell Middle School. In 1999, she graduated from Science Hill High School after four years in the successful marching band program built by Director Tom Stites. In 2003, she graduated from East Tennessee State University with a Bachelors of Social Science in Political Science and a Minor in Leadership Studies.
During her tenure at ETSU, Kate found herself involved in a variety of extracurricular activities outside of the classroom. She was initiated into the social sorority, Alpha Xi Delta, initiated into the service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, was a Staff Programmer for University Productions (the student organization that scheduled the bands, lecturers, comedians, movies, and other campus events), and was an Editorialist for The East Tennesseean. In 2003, after the Tennessee Legislature cut funding for all state higher education institutions, Kate planned a state-wide walkout and voter registration drives across all the Tennessee Board of Regents colleges and universities. She graduated Cum Laude in December of 2003.
Kate went on to work for the Girl Scouts of the Appalachian Council, Inc. and Second Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Tennessee from 2004 through 2006. For the Girl Scouts, she implemented the Studio 2B program for the Girl Scouts—a pilot program being tested in only ten councils across the nation—by recruiting and training young, professional women ages 18 – 29 volunteers to serve as mentors to Junior and Senior level Girl Scouts. While working for the food bank, Kate recruited new organizations to serve as food pantries and soup kitchens to help distribute food to so many community members in need. She coached these organizations through the 501(c)3 process to ensure they were able to receive and distribute USDA food.
In 2006, Kate was accepted to American University’s School of Public Affairs program to earn her Master’s in Public Administration. While there, she also earned a Graduate Certificate in Women, Policy, and Political Leadership as well as graduated from their Campaign Management Institute. While seeking her degree, Kate was also a columnist for The Eagle.
Simultaneously, while seeking her MPA at AU, Kate was also working as a Financial Analyst for Northrop Grumman (later TASC) as a contractor for the United States Navy. Her efforts ensured that Naval servicemen and women remained safe as they served our country both at home and abroad.
While living in the Washington, D.C. metro area, Kate volunteered for organizations such as EMILY’s List, Running Start, the Human Rights Campaign, Victory Fund, Obama for America, and the Anti-Defamation League. She also started her own photography business and wrote for several online publications. In 2009, she chartered the Washington, D.C. chapter of Dykes on Bikes and served as the organization’s President through 2013.
In 2016, after a motorcycle accident in 2013 left her facing several surgeries and many physical disabilities, Kate returned home to Johnson City. Beginning that spring, she signed on to Nancy Fischman’s Tennessee State House District 7 election campaign as her Campaign Manager. In March of 2017, Kate was elected Chair of the Washington County Democratic Party and is seeking to use her skills and insights to bring a Democratic voice to the table in Northeast Tennessee.
Kate is also an aspiring author, having written seven books which focus on topics such as religion, women’s rights and women’s issues, as well as LGBT rights. In 2017, she joined a grant writing committee through the Washington County – Johnson City Animal Shelter to secure additional funds to serve the mission of saving our animals’ lives.