Hi everybody! I'm Stefany Reese.
I grew up in a family that makes its living in the firearms industry, so the Second Amendment is truly a principle that has shaped, and defined my life since the day I was born. I wanted to create a brand and a voice that reflected not only my Second Amendment lifestyle, but everything else that encompasses my lifestyle as well: travel, fashion, food, music, career advice, cool things I find on the Internet and overall, a compassionate community of likeminded, independent and multi-faceted women.
Interestingly enough, although I grew up around the firearms industry, I, myself, am still very new to the firearms industry. My father and my uncle owned a firearms manufacturing company in an even fifty-fifty split. They knew dividing the company between their children (my cousins, brother and I) as we got older was something that would cause inherent trouble. So, I was told from a very early age that working for our family's company wasn't an option on the table. Find your own passion, was what my dad would often tell me. So I did.
After graduating college, I lived in Dallas, New York City, Chicago (albeit very briefly) and Los Angeles.
I explored every career interest that I'd ever had: I worked for a magazine, an event planning company, a sports team, a record label; I went back to school for music production and consequently started my own venture as the manager of two musicians (another story for another time). I also worked for a start-up radio station as an on-air personality while simultaneously working for another music/media company. I even went to school to become a makeup artist and have been a DJ. I auditioned for a TV pilot. (Spoiler alert: didn't get it! haha) I wrote the manuscript for a children's book.
I had unsatisfying moments of unemployment, frustrating moments at work where I wasn't doing very well, and also amazing moments of clarity and success where I felt like I was unstoppable. However, I always felt a pull back to my roots and likely, that's why I never really landed on something of permanence.
Then, in June of 2014, my dad purchased the other half of the company from my uncle.
I remember sitting with my dad late into the night on the day the official paperwork had been finalized. He asked me if I'd be interested in coming onboard to the family business. We talked for a while about the possibility, and I told him that I'd always had an interest in getting involved so I was more than enthusiastic to consider it.
By 2015, I was officially an employee -- a huge newbie, although I was pretty familiar with the product lineup, and completely new to the industry despite what many people may have expected.
So long story not-so-short, my journey began within the firearms industry not that long ago, but the support of the Second Amendment has always been in my blood. That ideology and principle of personal responsibility is ingrained in me to my core. It was a constant topic of conversation at our house and although the business might be new, the values represented in the Second Amendment community truly represent me, my family, who I am and who I hope to be in the future.
I found it frustrating that there weren't many lifestyle or editorial outlets that speak to the modern woman who also happens to have a gun in her bedside table for protection. Or a woman who has a husband who takes her on dates to the shooting range. Or a grandma who has passed down secret family pheasant recipes to her. Or a dad who taught her to shoot when she was eight. It's frustrating because the cultural perception is, then, that if a woman is pro-gun that politically she's narrow-minded, or that she doesn't support the LGBTQ community for example. That's just not accurate.
The truth is, the Second Amendment defends everyone -- and every woman -- in the U.S., so why should every woman feel as though they are typecast in a certain way? I want to be a voice that represents the reality: no woman is just one note. We are all a culmination of our experiences, our interests, and our circumstances and support of the Second Amendment shouldn't be seen as mutually exclusive (or inclusive) to anything else.
I'm writing this to fill a void that I've witnessed in my own life. I want to read about music, fashion, art, life advice, fitness, entertaining, food and wine and occasionally maybe there's an article about the best way to prepare wild game on the grill. (For real though, I need to learn that if I ever expect my Grandma to pass on those pheasant recipes!) Basically what I'm trying to say is that this is going to be a well-rounded attempt to represent women as a whole, first and foremost. And secondly (no pun intended), it's an attempt to break down these walls that are grouping together all pro-gun women into one largely-presumed category. (#GirlPower speech over.)
2nd to None is simply my love letter to those who cherish the Second and live fun, happy, full lives because of the freedoms it affords us. I can't wait to talk about life with you guys and share what is fresh and new.
Welcome to 2nd to None, I hope you love it.