Say what you want about Kim Kardashian, but there’s no denying the reality TV queen’s business prowess. Fortifying an empire, however, takes a lot of work—and it doesn’t matter who you are, you can’t fly solo if you want to stay on top. Enter Stephanie Shepherd. If Keeping Up With The Kardashians is one of your guilty pleasures—girl, same—then you probably see Stephanie in the background during some of the family’s most dramatic scenes. But what do we really know about her? How did she end up being Kim Kardashian’s right hand?
Believe it or not, Stephanie didn’t grow up in the same circle as the Kardashians. She was born and raised by a single mom in a small town in Ohio. Stephanie told Refinery 29, “When I say I came from a small town, I mean that I would pass cows driving to school. It was country life: bonfires and football games. So when I came [to LA], it was a whole different thing…I hadn’t really traveled, I didn’t know what Givenchy was or how to pronounce it.”
Soon after moving to LA, Stephanie dropped her part-time gig at the front desk of Gold’s gym to work as an assistant to choreographer Mikey Minden. Eventually, she befriended former Pussycat Doll Robin Antin, who was close friends with Kim Kardashian.
On meeting Kim for the first time: “She had no makeup on and was in her sweats, super pregnant with North. She was just like, ‘Look, I need help, Robin loves you and says great things about you; this is what I need. Can you do it?’ And I was like, ‘Okay, sure, I can do that—and if I can’t, I’ll figure it out!’ Meanwhile in my head, I was so nervous. Coincidentally, we were both wearing French braids...Kim later told me she was thinking ‘This girl has good vibes and a braid, I’m into her!’”
On her experience as Kim’s executive assistant: “I was doing her whole schedule, doing her laundry, booking travel, putting the stroller together and all of these things. But I wasn’t nervous. I was just excited, always staying longer than I needed because I was trying to prove myself—and then North came early! I was a brand new assistant who had no idea what to do with a baby, but we all moved into Kris’ house, and she was the one who made it all feel okay and moved mountains for us. Four years later, Kim now also has a personal assistant, a house assistant, two kids, two nannies, and I was recently promoted to COO of Kardashian West Brands, so we’re looking for someone to fill my executive assistant position. Sometimes we look at each other like, wow, remember when it was just me and you?”
On who her biggest inspiration is: “Kris Jenner is a fucking G. The biggest lesson she’s taught me is to not procrastinate. When you want something done, get it done. If you’re a procrastinator, this is not the world for you. If someone tells her no, she has no problem standing her ground and saying, ‘We’re not accepting that, get someone on the phone and make it happen.’ That woman can literally get on the phone and change the world. And somehow, she juggles all of these kids, all of their careers, and still makes sure that every assistant, every staff member, has a Christmas present, delivered to us by Christmas, with a thoughtful card. And it’s a nice ass Christmas present. That’s the kind of person I aspire to be one day.”
Read the full interview on Refinery 29.
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