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Kimberly McKinney, 39 Talented photographer dabbles in local politics By Autumn Owens


f you haven’t seen her name, then you have at least seen her beautifullythemed children, family and senior portraits floating around the web. Kimberly McKinney has a thriving business in photography, something she started eight years ago. Kimberly grew up in Breckenridge, married her husband, Stephenville native Travis, in 2000 and graduated from Tarleton State University in 2001 with a degree is sociology. “I worked for MHMR for a while and then I had kids and stayed home,” she said. “When the twins were little I started getting into photography because I wanted beautiful pictures like I would see online and learned really quick that it’s not just grabbing a camera and making it happen.” Kimberly is self-taught and has learned from other photographers to create her business, Kimmie McKinney Photography. “I love all the people and chaotic two year olds, and I love that I can create

something,” she said. “I love being able to transform something and make it into something that’s artistic.” Her favorites include a magical Christmas tree farm she created and bluebonnet photos. “I definitely Photoshop, that’s where the magic happens,” she said with a laugh. “I try to get it right in-camera, but that only takes you so far. I’m always learning new skills, it’s a never-ending process.” Kimberly also teaches a class with other local photographers on how to get that perfect shot. More recently, Kimberly found herself getting involved in local politics and headed up the opposition to the Ranger College annexation. “I really researched that and the more I researched it the more I realized that people weren’t paying attention,” she said. “It’s so not like me, but it just hit me wrong that a junior college would tax us. This is is a brand new taxing entity, it’s not like school taxes, which are completely different. With local issues you

Kimberly McKinney is a successful photographer that loves her family and more recently, politics. have more control so I dove right in and went to all the meetings and researched. My goal was just to get information out there.” Kimberly is even considering a future run for office. “If we lived in town I would probably throw my hat in for city council, but we’re not in town,” she said. “I thought about school board, but it’s not a good time right now.” Kimberly’s children are involved in sports and she’s always there cheering them on. “We live and breathe football with two boys,” she said. “We do a lot with

Sgt. Jeff Walker, 33 Called to serve and protect looked at border patrol, game warden and that kind of thing. During my last semester riginally from Fredericksburg, Sgt. Jeff at Tarleton I did an internship at the Walker came to Stephenville in 2003 Stephenville Police Department and decided to attend Tarleton State University, this is where I wanted to stay.” graduating with a degree in criminal justice It should also be mentioned that Jeff’s in 2007. law enforcement work includes not only his Asked if he always wanted to become position as a night shift patrol sergeant, he’s a police officer, he said, “No. It was also a member of the Regional SWAT Team. around my sophomore year in high school He and his wife Lena, a speech patholoI started leaning in that direction. I wasn’t gist, have two daughters, ages two and one hundred percent sure what branch of five, so there’s not a lot of time for much law enforcement I wanted to get into, so I else. By Micheal Ross

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Patrol Sgt. Jeff Walker has been with the SPD since 2008. “When I do get a chance, I love to hunt and fish,” he said. “I hunt deer, birds and was fortunate enough to go to South Dakota this year and go pheasant hunting.” Jeff said Stephenville is the perfect place to raise a family. “I’m here for a reason,” he said. “It’s a great place to raise kids and I like the thought of serving the community. There’s no place I’d rather be.”

our kids and are always traveling to some sports function. “I’ve really made Stephenville home,” she said. “It’s just like a better version of high school. You recognize people and you get your niche and you really meet people you are friends with the rest of your life.”

Profile for GateHouse Southwest

2018 SET 40 Under 40  

2018 SET 40 Under 40