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Cathy Luebke Social Media HerHighway Drive Team>

Cathy grew up in the Chicago suburbs and graduated with a journalism degree from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. She was drawn to the west, working at newspapers in Wyoming and Washington state before moving to Arizona. Her 20-year plus run at the Phoenix Business Journal has been the centerpoint of her career. She’s had many roles, but retired (mostly) in 2011 when she was Web editor.

How excited or why are your participating with HerHighway Drive Breast Cancer Awareness?

I’m super excited for a number of reasons. Breast cancer touches everyone today. And just as I do with the Komen walk every year, I will make this drive thinking of my dear friends and family who have survived and in some cases still are fighting the battle. I haven’t been on a road trip for years, and this is a great opportunity to support the cause, enjoy the company of other women in my field, and see some of the sights our great country has to offer. Then of course there is my passion for cars.

As a woman what features are your favorites in a car?

I’ve been reviewing cars for 20 years, so thinking back, one of the brightest moments was when Corvette designers finally lowered the side sill and moved the emergency brake so a woman could get in with some grace. Women like to drive sports cars too.

What is your proudest social media achievement?

I was Web editor at the Phoenix Business Journal, helping develop our Web presence, as the social media revolution hit. Some reporters had to be dragged into the fray, but ultimately everyone embraced the idea.

What is your current challenge at work?

I am mostly retired, but still write a weekly auto column, occasional online blogs and stories for our print edition, and fill in as an editor as needed. So life is great.

What is your top advice to other women for social media?

Embrace it, explore new trends, but don’t become obsessed. There is much to learn and connections to make.

Dream job?

I love being a newspaper writer and editor in the business and automotive fields. Back in 1973, when I graduated college, I was advised that economic journalism was a growing field. It sounded boring, something I’d never do. After some years of general news, I found myself doing just that and loving it. It was a bonus that in 1992 inherited the weekly auto review. But if journalism was out and my talents were different, I would like to be a Doonesbury-type cartoonist or make acoustic guitars.

What you do to relax?

Swim laps and walk my dog or one of my fosters.

Who have you mentored, or/and did someone mentor you in social media to help you get started?

Here’s a twist. In 2002, I recruited former intern Adam Kress to our staff as a technology reporter. He now is our new media editor, helping keep all of us savvy on social media.

Learn more about Cathy on twitter, facebook and her Motor Mondays blog