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Meet Sandra McCartt, “The Quotable, Equine Expert” Riding Into The Hearts of Community”

Posted on September 16, 2009
Filed Under Interviews, Recruitingblogs.com | Comments Off on Meet Sandra McCartt, “The Quotable, Equine Expert” Riding Into The Hearts of Community”

“When I die it will lower the average age in recruiting by 15 years”

“As an animal advocate, I adopted rescue horses and dogs … The Blues Brothers” and two barn dogs named Barney the Barn dog (half coyote rescued from a garbage pit during a snow storm) and Miss Milly Millerd (brought home from the shelter on Christmas Eve because she was marked for euthanasia due to being nutty as a fruitcake) all reside at a barn and 50 acres of pasture located 15 miles West of Amarillo. “The barn” being where I spend most of my time when not recruiting.”


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Community Volunteering: Animal Cruelty Investigator, Suicide Prevention-Crisis Intervention Hot Line. Panhandle Heritage Foundation
Personal Causes: Humane Society, Shop with a Cop
My favorite Sandra Post
Phone: 806-359-0335, 806-433-5500
Email Sandra

“I train trick horses, 5 big geldings and one sexy little black Welsh pony, all black. I take them to children’s hospitals, nursing homes and horsemen’s groups to demonstrate what a horse can do when trained with “Gentle Horsemanship Methods”

Q&A with Sandra McCartt

Six Degrees: Tell us of your home world, Sandra

Sandra: I have been divorced for so long that I can’t remember his first name. I have two children, Eugene McCartt IV age 45, CPA, CFP , Tax Director at Energy Corporation of American in Denver.

Lisa McCartt Johnston, 48, Manager at NationWide Insurance.
Two Grandaughters , Alexis and Alyssa, 26 and 21
Two Great Grandsons, Jayden and Jaxon, ages 6 and 2.

Six Degrees: Detail Hobbies, activities/interests unfamiliar to readers

Sandra: I train trick horses, 5 big geldings and one sexy little black Welsh pony, all black, known as “The Blues Brothers”. I take them to children’s hospitals, nursing homes and horsemen’s groups to demonstrate what a horse can do when trained with “Gentle Horsemanship Methods” . I rode and trained with Pat Parelli and Craig Cameron as mentors in the ways of The Horsewhispers. I am a licensed Animal Cruelty Investigator, Humane Society of the US ,qualified as an equine expert witness to testify in horse cruelty cases as the “Lawyer for the Horse”. I am a licensed equi-therapy technician and group facilitator working with a psychiatrist who treats autistic patients, bi-polars, schizophrenics as well as groups for abused children and women utilizing both horses and dogs.

I served on the City of Amarillo, Animal Control Board for 10 years. As an animal advocate I adopt rescue horses and dogs. I live happily in a townhouse with a 150 lb Great Pyrenees named Cosmo Kramer and a Standard Poodle named Cloppy La Rue.


“The Blues Brothers” and two barn dogs named Barney the Barn dog (half coyote rescued from a garbage pit during a snow storm) and Miss Milly Millerd (brought home from the shelter on Christmas Eve because she was marked for euthanasia due to being nutty as a fruitcake) all reside at a barn and 50 acres of pasture located 15 miles West of Amarillo. “The barn” being where I spend most of my time when not recruiting.

I played tournament tennis for many years earning a 9th ranked Junior player in Texas at age 12 continuing to play competitively through college. I still enjoy a set or two when time permits. I was a High School Cheerleader, editor of the annual and one of those prom queens with “big hair” of the 50’s. After High School I was a professional ramp and photographers model in Dallas before attending the University of Arizona , majoring in journalism and accounting with a philosophy minor. Upon returning to my hometown of Amarillo, Texas, I joined Bass Broadcasting/KFDA television as the “Santa Claus Girl” for the Christmas sales promotion.

I was offered a position as sales assistant/copywriter and did a noon half hour show women’s show three days a week. When station management discovered that I was an accountant I was promoted to Business Manager. The only office in the station with a window which was the deciding factor to give up being an “on air” personality.

After leaving “show business” to marry and have children I returned to school at West Texas A & M to complete my requirements for a degree in Animal Science-Equine Option. I showed horses in AQHA competition in Western Pleasure, English Pleasure, Hunter jumper and dressage, qualifying a horse for the AQHA World Finals.

I have served on the Boards of Big Brothers-Big Sisters, Panhandle Heritage Foundation, The outdoor drama “Texas” where I did the pre show horse demonstrations and trained the riding team for the play produced in Palo Duro Canyon Amphitheatre each summer. As the grand daughter of early pioneers who homesteaded in the Northern Texas panhandle in 1900, I am active in many historical preservation groups concerning the early ranches of Texas.

I was one of the founding members of the Amarillo Art Museum under the curatorship of Amarillo Junior College. I was a founding member and active crisis line counselor and volunteer for Amarillo Suicide Prevention and Crisis Intervention. I was selected by Region 16 Texas Education Agency to be a member of the task force who were trained to teach teachers how to teach drug education. As a founding member of “Kiros House” I was an on site volunteer for intake of drug overdose cases and abused women and children. I was a group facilitator/team leader with the “You” seminars established by Dr. Phil before he became “Dr. Phil” and started to talk with that hokey accent.

Six Degrees: How many years have you been in the staffing industry?

Sandra: I have been in the recruiting business for 32 years.

Six Degrees: How did you get started as a recruiter?

Sandra: In 1975 I walked into an employment agency with one thing in mind. No more accounting. After an hour of answering questions about how I would be able to pay the employment fee. The “consultant” asked me what I really wanted to do ? I told her that I would really like to have her job because I felt that I would never spend an hour talking about the fee before I asked someone what they wanted to do. The “consultant” laughed and said, “Don’t move I am going to go talk to my boss, I hate this job.” I have only been here three weeks, I came in here looking for an accounting job and they talked me into working the accounting desk.” An hour later the agency owner asked me a few questions about my background then asked me if I really liked people. I said, “No not really but I am trained to handle people in crisis and I think a job change or a career change is a life crisis. The next day I was behind the desk and my “consultant” was going on interviews for an accounting job. I broke all production records with the agency without knowing it the first year I was there. I talked an employer into the first “fee paid by employer” deal by offering a 90 day replacement guarantee without my employers approval. It almost got me fired because any guarantee at that time was unheard of , but it worked.


In 1978 I decided that there had to be a better way to do this business than charging people to find them a job and collecting fees at 15.00 a week. I offered to buy the agency I worked for. The owner refused to sell so I resigned, rented an office , put in phones, hired six recruiters and started Professional Search, Inc. International. Specializing in the Oil and Gas industry, Public accounting and Agribusiness the firm did well until the Oil and Gas crash of the late 80’s. When the bottom dropped out in 1991 I laid off the team, put office furniture in storage and officed from home, working as a generalist until 2000 when another experienced recruiter and I opened an office and a partnership. Discovering 8 months into the partnership that my experienced partner was paying kick backs to a few HR managers, I dissolved the partnership and moved to my current location.

Professional Search, Inc Int’l is a generalist 1120C corporation with clients throughout the United States and represents foreign companies with investments in the US. Working with four independent contract recruiters and splits partners, I currently work in the healthcare, biotech, legal, agribusiness, supply chain, oil and gas, public and private accounting , engineering and IT verticals. After 32 years in the third party recruiting industry, my business model is a different and unusual breed of cat. My associates and I represent 30 to 40 companies in different industries who utilize our services in all areas of the company. One month may be the accounting department or IT, the next a doctor or a PA. It evolved that way with relationships developed over 32 years and it works. It’s never dull; we learn something new every week and work with people from very different professions and industries.

Six Degrees: What single event had the most impact on your sourcing/recruiting career?

Sandra: The first fee paid placement. The fax machine and the computer. After this long there has to be more than one.

Do you have a mentor to whom you attribute your overall outlook on recruitment, capabilities, and/or model your career after?

Sandra: No, I was self trained, self motivated. I had a great deal of support from professional people I worked for who taught me as we went what they wanted and what was important in their industry.

Six Degrees: Tell us about your staffing firm

Sandra: As president , in addition to handling a full recruiting desk and being the “face person” for the firm, I handle all the accounting, financial ,administrative and advertising responsibilities. We are a small corporation with four independent contract recruiters. We utilize four sourcers that we refer to as the four witches..

Six Degrees: (A) What other companies’ recruiting operations do you admire or have heard are best-practice examples?

Sandra: We work with selected independent recruiters that we know and trust. Our idea of best practice examples are honest , experienced recruiters who have their ego in order, are not pushy and know how to work hard. Treat clients as a valued customer even if they are difficult, know how to work with and handle people in crisis and have fun making money.

(B) In what aspects are they superior?

Sandra: Character and integrity.

Six Degrees: What recent general news story or industry trend do you feel will have an impact on your work in the future? Why?


Sandra: We were prepared for the recession so we have done well this year as we come out of it we are positioned strongly because we are not “beat up” from trying to survive.

Six Degrees: Tell us about your broader involvement within the staffing industry:

Sandra: I do a lot of public speaking to industry groups and to college students. Panhandle Chapter of CPA’s, Junior Bar Association , Accounting Club at WTAMU. Due to the size of my “animal” family I do not travel unless it is to visit a client. conferences are not my cup of tea

Six Degrees: Can you detail how the recession has affected your particular industry niche?

Sandra: We saw it coming. After going through the big crash of the late 80’s early 90’s and almost watching myself disappear. When we were making a lot of money we put ourselves in a position for each of us to be able to pay all personal expenses and office expenses for a year. Without the pressure of fighting to survive financially and moving fast and hard into the healthcare vertical we have had a good year. It has not been the best we ever had but good enough that we didn’t have to dip into the emergency fund.

Six Degrees: Aside from simply the generic term “Networking” what specific efforts have you made on your own behalf, or on behalf of colleagues to broaden your opportunities. Are there specific groups, both online and in-person that have proved fruitful in extending your personal brand and job seeking prospects?

Sandra: In November when things were pretty slow I discovered RBC. It’s been fun, wild and interesting. I have developed several excellent split partners and some of the greatest online friends that I hope to meet personally some day.

Six Degrees: Given your own Trial and Error experiences as a Networker, what advice do you have for your peers on what NOT to do?

Sandra: Don’t get scattered all over the place. Focus on groups where you have something to offer or something to learn. Do not be like a realtor or an insurance sales person who shows up every time somebody serves drinks or cocktail weenies. Make yourself count. Online find a spot like RBC where you fit and relate. Don’t scatter your silly self all over the net and spend your days in a time suck of going from one site to the next.

Six Degrees: What is your next career goal? What do you need to do to get there?

Sandra: To keep on doing what I love to do until I fall over in front of the computer. Get some sleep. I am a night person who works until 2 or 3 in the morning. I have no pulse until 9:00 AM then it’s go time. My personal philosophy is that I am the most ridiculous person I know. The world is funny no matter what happens. God has a sense of humor and so do I.


Originally Published on RecruitingBlogs.com

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