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Linda Maynor: Permanent Alabama changemaker who owns ‘tough’ as a virtue – 2024 Women of Impact

Linda Maynor did not plan on being where she is today.

“I really wanted to be a psychologist,” she said. “That was always my dream of what I wanted to do.”

Maynor, the managing partner for Maynor & Stiers LLC, has spent decades in the political sphere fundraising, managing campaigns, and lobbying on behalf of defense companies in Alabama. 

In her role, Maynor has strong working relationships with decisionmakers in the legislative and executive branches of the federal government. Maynor & Stiers has formed a strategic alliance with Butler Snow, a law firm with offices in Huntsville, Birmingham and Montgomery, as well as offices across the U.S. and overseas. 

“This was never a planned career for me,” she said. “It was a snowball effect. I would do one thing and then something else would happen and then something else would happen. 

“So, before I knew it, I was running campaigns and doing fundraisers for governors, congressmen, senators, state leaders, city council people, and so on.”

Maynor built her practice over the past three decades, specializing in defense, aerospace, and technology matters. She maintains a national security clearance.

The key to success is believing in the people and causes you work to support, Maynor said.  

“I’ve never charged one cent for one fundraiser ever in my life because I have always supported people that supported my ideals and what is good for Huntsville and the country,” she said. “I’ve always felt very strongly about doing that.” 

It has certainly worked. Between civic and political fundraising, she has raised many millions of dollars on causes and candidates she believed in.

Maynor said while this wasn’t her planned path, it was something she could do to affect change for something better. And that’s something she believes anyone can do. 

“You can, you can participate,” she said. “You can make a contribution, you can go to an event, you can learn. When people say I don’t deal in politics because politics doesn’t affect my life, I wonder how they don’t understand that it affects every facet of your life.”

While Maynor has spent decades as a major power player, often as the only woman in the room, she had her own trailblazer to look up to.  

“I had a very tough grandmother,” she said. “She was born in 1890 and went to Baylor University on an academic scholarship back when women were only going to finishing schools.” 

Her grandmother had a very profound and lasting influence on her life.  

“My grandmother was valedictorian of her class in academics at Baylor,” she said. “She was editor of the yearbook. I have all four of her yearbooks and her senior year quote was ‘Let’s do it’.  

“And that’s how I was raised.”

Maynor said her grandmother proved it’s an advantage to be tough.

“I’ve worked in a field of men my entire life,” she said. “It’s only recently it seems that I’m actually working with women. And the women that I’m working with, they’re all tough. They’re tough women, they’re smart women. And I really respect them. 

“So don’t be afraid of the label ‘tough’.”

Among her many accomplishments, Maynor has served as the president’s representative to the Czech Republic, has been elected delegate to the Republican National Convention, and served on the GOP platform committee. She has also served on the board of the USO, the nonprofit organization that serves America’s military service members by keeping them connected to family, home, and country. 

Don’t limit yourself, said Maynor.

“Whatever it is, just try it. Just do it,” she said. “I mean there’s so many times that I have thought, well I don’t really wanna do that or I don’t know how to do that and I’ve gone and done it. Then after I think, ‘how could you ever have thought you couldn’t have done this?’” 

Maynor said stepping out of her comfort zone, however, didn’t mean that she didn’t have fear.  

“I do have fear and always have,” she said. ‘It’s just that fear also cripples. And I was never going to be like that.” 

It’s been a great experience, she said.  

“It just got to the point where anything, anytime, any opportunity came my way, no matter how difficult it seemed to me at the time, I would just do it and then just see what happened,” Maynor said. 

“And normally, it’s turned out pretty well.” 

Often recognized for her longtime work with Sen. Richard Shelby, Maynor credits him for encouraging her to always stand up for herself.  

“He’s probably one of the smartest guys I’ve met,” she said. And he’s extremely well-read. He was extremely tough and he never backed down. But he didn’t do it publicly. 

“He knew that I would never back down and he would kind of push me at times to stand up. I never wanted anyone to tell me I couldn’t do something and there were a lot of people who used to tell me that. I grew up in the ‘50s and ‘60s and ‘70s and men didn’t always take kindly to women stepping out.” 

Reflecting on her long and successful career, Mayor takes special pride in her role supporting defense companies.  

“I feel very strongly about being in a position where I can help with defending America and keeping ourselves free,” she said. “Being successful at that has been very rewarding to me because I feel like I’m doing something very positive and meaningful not only to help the country but also to help our warfighters.”

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