By Eli Yokley
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Working for Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey, R-St. Charles, is a full-time job for Kit Crancer.
As the Dempsey’s legislative director, Crancer is tasked with managing the bills making their way through the body and helping Dempsey manage his members. Much like a legislator’s schedule, Crancer’s job means early mornings, long days, and late nights.
Crancer is a graduate of Lindbergh High School in St. Louis. It was there where he first found his interest in politics.
“I started working on political campaigns when I was in high school and started working my way up,” he said. “I went in to talk to Jim Avery and thought working for a state representative would be pretty cool.”
From there, Crancer’s career in politics began. He took his first job in 2008, where he worked for a year as chief of staff to Sen. Jim Lembke, R-St. Louis. Then, he moved over to work in the same capacity for Sen. Jane Cunningham, R-St. Louis.
Cunningham announced last year that she would not be seeking reelection. So, soon after session, Crancer began as director of the Missouri Senate Campaign Committee during the 2012 cycle.
Now in Dempsey’s office, Crancer said he could not be happier.
“I enjoy the political aspect and seeing that interact with policy,” he said. “It’s hard not to feel blessed driving into [Jefferson City] and seeing the Capitol.”
Crancer and his wife, Jennifer, recently moved to Springfield from St. Louis, where Crancer grew up and went to school. His wife serves as an assistant prosecutor there. He travels back and forth every week. While at home, he said he likes to go fishing, work out at the gym,and spend time with his wife — “nothing too terribly exciting.”
With his work schedule being as tight as it is, Crancer said he does not get to spend much time outside of the building, but enjoys working and catching up with the friends he has made.
“Just moving from St. Louis to Springfield, I don’t have a huge amount of friends yet,” he said. “Coming back here, I hang out with those guys I have built relationships with over the last decade.”
One of the biggest draws to working in government and politics, he said, is its capriciousness.
“It is a really unique environment,” he added. “There is no day that is scripted. Every day you’ve got something you’re dealing with — you never know what 5 p.m. is going to look like at 8 a.m.”
Crancer, who, in the age of term limits, at 26-years-old has built up quite a bit of his own institutional knowledge in the Capitol, said he might consider a run for office himself some day once he and his wife finally settle down.
“That is something I would consider, moving forward,” he said.
Crancer said his advice to young people trying to get a start in politics would be to start small, be involved, and build up relationships with their local elected officials.
“It is amazing the amount of impact one dedicated 18 or 19-year-old can have, and those relationships last often years,” he said.
To contact Eli Yokley, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or via Twitter at @eyokley.