Polly Dement is the author of Mississippi Entrepreneurs, a book that includes the stories of 85 of Mississippi’s tenacious, visionary business, social and cultural entrepreneurs. Based on nearly 100 interviews, the stories tell in the entrepreneurs’ own words “how they did it.” Polly grew up in Vicksburg and graduated from Millsaps College, where she had the high privilege of being in Eudora Welty’s writing seminar.
In Washington, DC Dement served on the staff of the Senate Watergate Committee, writing profiles of the witnesses who testified. Subsequently, she was a reporter for the Congressional Monitor, and for over a decade beginning in 1981 told in a variety of publications stories of the investors and entrepreneurs of the National Association of Investment Companies. As vice president and senior communications counselor for Hager Sharp, Inc., a woman-owned DC communications firm, she managed accounts for clients as diverse as the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health and the Annie E. Casey Foundation. She also served as communications director for U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller on the National Commission on Children. As a volunteer she served on the boards of directors of American Rivers and the Potomac Conservancy.
Polly Dement now lives in New Mexico with her husband John Mayer, and had the good fortune on return visits to her home state of Mississippi to land the assignment to tell the stories of how Mississippi entrepreneurs created their enterprises.