About Paula McCraney

Louisville Metro Council
District 7
601 W. Jefferson Street
Louisville, KY 40202
(502) 574-1107
Contact Councilwoman Dr. Paula McCraney

Biography

Known for her quick wit and energetic personality, Paula McCraney lives her life with the understanding that to whom much is given, much is required. As a 30-year City of St. Matthews resident, Paula ran for a seat on the Metro Council to be a part of something greater than herself. She champions the issues that matter most to the 30,000 residents of District 7 because she cares about our city and wants to give back to the community that has given so much to her. Councilwoman McCraney was elected on November 6, 2018, and re-elected for another four- year term in 2022. In January 2024, her colleagues reelected her to serve a second term as the Majority Caucus Chair and President Pro-Tem. She also serves as a member of the Budget Committee, Committee on Committees, and an ex-officio member of the Majority Caucus Personnel Committee and Rules Committee. In addition to her committee duties on the Council, she serves as the Metro Council Women’s Caucus Co-Chair and an appointed member of the Equity in Contracting and Procurement task force and the Juneteenth Jubilee Commission.

Councilwoman McCraney co-sponsored Breonna’s Law, which outlawed No-Knock Warrants and regulated police body cameras. She sponsored the Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence ordinance, wrote the legislation that created the Civilian Review and Accountability Board, and served on the search committee for Louisville’s first Inspector General for police oversight. Her advocacy for affordable housing and participation on ARP Housing Task Force resulted in the funding of $40 million for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, $32 million for permanent supportive housing with wrap-around services, $7.5 million for the renovation of affordable housing units; $1.5 million for outdoor safe space operations, and $8 million for down payment assistance and home repair.

In 2023, Paula’s robust educational journey came full circle when she successfully defended her doctoral capstone project and fulfilled all requirements to obtain a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) from Spalding University. The road to becoming Dr. McCraney was marked by several other educational milestones, including completing a Master of Arts in Business Management and Leadership from Webster University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Oklahoma State University. A lifelong learner in both the classroom and the community, Councilwoman McCraney is also a graduate of Focus Louisville (Class of 1997), Leadership Louisville (Class of 1999), the Bingham Fellows Program (Class of 2001), and the Courier-Journal Newspaper Forum Fellowship (2009). In 2020, she also graduated from Leadership Kentucky, where she was awarded the prestigious Lisa Murrell Award.

Dr. McCraney’s diverse work experience includes a 10-year career in the banking industry. She began her financial journey as a banking center branch manager and loan officer and climbed the corporate ladder to commercial lending and Vice President of Retail Banking. Paula is using her banking experience as the owner of two businesses, P Mc & Associates Management Consultant and The Traveling Boutique. As a boutique owner, Paula uses her creative right brain to design one-of-a-kind fascinators and hats. Her millinery skills dub her the “mad hatter” for her over-the- top styles. Her hats have been featured at a RAW Artist event and numerous trade shows, talk shows, and newscasts. As a management consultant, Paula is a business strategist with over 30 years of experience helping companies drive growth and maximize profitability. She transforms how business owners operate and recommends that they incorporate social responsibility into their business portfolios to consider the impact their business decisions have on profit, people, and the planet. She has advised numerous companies on strategic planning, marketing, and organizational development. She conducts leadership and change management workshops, coaches individuals, and is a highly sought-after speaker. Her expertise is leveraging data-driven insights to identify opportunities, streamline operations, and deliver sustainable results. In March 2024, Ms. McCraney won the prestigious Kiahna W. Davis Entrepreneur of the Year Award at the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Regional Conference in Chicago, IL.

Often referred to as a prolific writer, Dr. McCraney has written and directed five gospel stage plays and numerous poems about women’s empowerment and social justice. In 2021, the Kentucky Opera commissioned Paula to write five Civil Rights songs. The songs debuted during an Opera Concert event in 2023 and will be featured again during the 2024 week of Juneteenth celebrations. In 1999, Paula wrote a grant and was awarded $5,000 to commission a pay equity study of Louisville businesses and the Jefferson County Government. The study revealed pay inequities and prompted a County Commissioner to investigate. The investigation resulted in pay adjustments across the county government, including a considerable pay adjustment for the then Deputy Police Chief, an African American female with an equivalent job description to that of her male Deputy Police Chief counterpart, who made substantially more. With the $5,000 grant, Paula also convened several female community leaders to write and publish a pay equity guide. Thousands of copies of the booklet were distributed throughout the community to nonprofit organizations and through human resource departments at select for-profit companies.

Paula is a commissioned Kentucky Colonel, an Adult Black Achiever, and an Honorary Captain of the Belle of Louisville. She was presented with a Distinguished Citizen award from the City of Louisville, a Community Service award from the Senate of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and a Congressional Honor for Outstanding Community Service from The United States Congress. Her other honors include the Woman of the Year Award from the Business and Professional Women/River City, the Business and Professional Award from the Louisville Defender Newspaper, and the Black History Month Community Service Award from the Louisville Metro Council. She also received the Business First Newspaper Forty Under 40 Award, the Landmarks of Excellence Award from the Public Relations Society of America, the Peak Performance Award from PNC Bank, and the Employee Performance Award from the Jefferson County Clerk’s Office. In 2007 and 2008, Paula was featured as “Influential” in the highly-acclaimed publication, “Who’s Who – African American Profiles.” In subsequent years, she has been featured in the publication as a successful entrepreneur. In 2022, the Councilwoman was recognized by The Kentucky Gazette as a Notable Woman in Kentucky Politics and Government.

Ms. McCraney’s love for her community is commensurate with her volunteerism and leadership positions. She has served as president of the Business and Professional Women/River City organization, president of the Windhurst Acres Homeowners Association, president of the National Council of Negro Women/Louisville Section, and was a two-term member of the Executive Board of the National Council of Negro Women, Inc., in Washington, D.C. She also served faithfully for seven years as the director of the Women’s Ministry at St. Stephen Church and dutifully fulfilled a two-year stint as the Minister of Generosity. She was licensed as a minister of the Gospel in 2018 after successfully presenting an initial sermon entitled “As Is.” She is a life member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and the National Council of Negro Women, Inc.

Dr. McCraney has been married to Billy McCraney for 38 years. They have two sons, a daughter- in-law, and two granddogs (a Bichon Frisé and a Goldendoodle).

updated 04/22/2024

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