Carrie Conko is the Senior Vice President of State Policy Network. State Policy Network is the incubator and connector of the free market, independent, state-focused think tank network. Carrie provides strategic guidance to enhance and promote the State Policy Network brand and help build the communications capabilities of the network. Prior to joining SPN in 2016, Carrie was senior vice president at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University where she oversaw all aspects of communications, marketing, and outreach. Carrie joined Mercatus as director of communications in 2004 when the Wall Street Journal called Mercatus “the most important think tank you never heard of.” That year Mercatus appeared in the media just 300 times. Under her guidance, in 2015, Mercatus scholars and research appeared in the media over 13,000 times. Prior to joining Mercatus, Carrie was a media relations and business development consultant within the legal industry. Before that, she was director of client services for a leading supplier of intellectual property services and software. Carrie also worked for five years at Washington National Cathedral, first in the office of public affairs and then as the Cathedral’s first events manager. Carrie received her BA in International Relations and Anthropology from American University.