First She Was 'The Facebook Lady.' Now She's the Mayor. [Episode 14]

Marian Orr, the first female mayor of Cheyenne, Wyo., exemplifies the power of social media.
by | November 7, 2017
Cheyenne, Wyo., Mayor Marian Orr and a goat
Cheyenne, Wyo., Mayor Marian Orr makes friends with a goat. (Facebook/Mayor Marian Orr)

Running a political campaign in the 21st century calls for a savvy social media strategy. Lucky for Marian Orr, people called her "the Facebook lady" when she was running for mayor of Cheyenne, Wyo.

That's because she posted on her Facebook about coffee and conversation meetings at local shops around town. People not only started showing up, they began following her online.

“I had zero name recognition going in,” says Orr, who used to be a lobbyist. But then, "strangers in the grocery store started recognizing me as the Facebook lady."

Her nickname paid off. Orr was elected mayor of Cheyenne last November and is the first woman to hold the position.

Since then, she has made economic development a key issue in a town that is still recovering from the recession. She ran on the promise of eliminating economic blight but has bigger goals of bringing a start-up scene to her region and developing a light-rail system throughout the southern Rocky Mountains.

On this episode of "The 23%: Conversations With Women in Government," Orr discusses her rise, her plans and what it was like to campaign in a nonpartisan race at a time when political polarization appears to be growing.

Listen below. You can also subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, and check out our archives.

 

 

Support for "The 23%" comes from the Governing Institute. Meet the incoming class of the Governing Institute's Women In Government Leadership Program here.