One Tough Muther: Karen Finocchio
Inspire • Empower • Elevate
Welcome to the Tough Muther Army!
At age 19, directly out of high school, I married a military man I knew only 4 months and by the age of 28, I had four children. By the age of 30, I made the decision to leave a very unhealthy, toxic marriage becoming a divorced single mother to 3 young sons ages 4, 7 and 9 years old and a 2-year-old daughter. In a blink of an eye, I went from living around the world as a military wife to living in two rooms in my parent’s home with four children and a dog.
With no education, I took any job I could get. My first job was as a waitress. Within months I advanced to a being a waitress and bartender. From there I worked at a car dealership, the accounting department in a bank, as a county mail delivery person, leaving to go to sell time, write and voice radio commercials for a group of radio stations.
Speaking to everyone I could, I searched for any government programs for single mothers. Denied food stamps because my car was too new, I struggled financially to provide for my children. Then a stroke of luck. A woman I met told me about a government program for single mothers that would allow me to buy a house for my family, with no money down and no interest. For almost 2 years I dreamed of moving out of my parents home and owning our own home. A home that would be ours, from the ground to the sky. So I applied and followed every strict requirement. As happy and excited that I was that this could happen, others weren’t not. However, against all the negative opinions, against all logic, against all self-doubt and doubt pushers and fear of failure; I did it and all by myself, as a single mother.
Life marched on, my children were going and my career flourished. I was hired as the advertising director for a sports nutrition company, where I learned everything I could about the world of advertising and marketing. Within years, I opened my own in-house agency, working with the WWF/WWE, NASCAR, The Grammys, Sharon and Ozzy Osborn, as well as cast members from The Sopranos and the Jersey Shore show. Learning from earth angels I wrote and produced television commercials that aired on NBC, CBS, FOX televisions station and every network in-between. I worked with Howard Stern, Opie and Anthony, Cousin Brucie, Scott and Todd in radio and was a guest on both of their shows.
In 2012, I started One Tough Muther (#OTM) advice column on the advice of my own children. Always being sought out by women who would ask my advice, my children thought I’d be the perfect person to write an advice column. They felt everyone should know what a Tough Muther I was. Half heartedly I made a small website that allowed people to ask me questions. Quickly the letters flooded in and I was happy to help girls and women realize their self-worth, find their self-esteem, strength, and abilities. Hey, who doesn’t need, good old fashioned Mutherly advice? To my surprise and delight, I was published in magazines and asked to be interviewed on radio, podcast and TV shows. Noticed by a company that rated website I was critiqued as Dear Abby on steroids due to my open and honest answers to their letters.
Although as my career and column flourished, I was faced with some very tough times and hard personal decisions. Two failed marriages and a devastating suicide by someone I loved, left me questioning my purpose in life. However, I believe that at our weakest moments, we must become our strongest and by helping those women and answering their questions, I was helping myself, too.
Soon I started public speaking and within 5 years, OTM grew into a powerful brand with thousands of women around the world requesting and wearing a One Tough Muther tee-shirts. By donning an OTM shirt, women were proudly displaying their strength, courage, resilience, and toughness. I’ve been told by many women that when they put on their One Tough Muther shirt, they feel strong, positive power. That powerful feeling was helping many face life’s obstacles, domestic violence, abuse, lack of self-esteem and self-confidence, depression, anxiety, disease and even cancer. My purpose had been found.
In August of this year, The One Tough Muther Podcast will hit the market. Premiering on CBS Radio at Play.it with co-hosts, Tough Muther Lisa and Tough Muther Gail, we want to inspire all women, at any age or stage in life to believe in themselves. We want women to realize the only person that has to believe in you, is YOU and to feel strength, positive power, inspired and empowered, knowing that If I could change my life, they can, too.
As we share our unique life lessons and communicate through “REAL” talk, let us inspire, guide and elevate one another, your dreams are within your reach and you are always one decision away from living a different life. It’s time to free yourself and live a life you’ll love. Whether you realize it or not, by seeking help, sharing your life lessons and facing your fears, you are becoming One Tough Muther!
INSPIRE • EMPOWER • ELEVATE