Jarrod McCartney was hired as the Heritage Tourism Development Director in 2015 and his position is the result of a collaboration between the National Willa Cather Center, the Red Cloud Community Foundation Fund, the City of Red Cloud, and the Red Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce—all of whom recognized the need for an economic development professional who focuses on developing the community's unique cultural heritage tourism assets. McCartney holds a bachelor's degree from Hastings College, a master's degree from Kansas State University, and completed his Ph.D. coursework at the University of Oklahoma.
Born and raised in Red Cloud, McCartney has family roots in Webster County that stretch back to the original homestead claim made by Mary Holcomb near Walnut Creek southwest of Inavale. McCartney is also the chair of the Red Cloud Community Fund, president of the Red Cloud Hotel, LLC board, and past president of the Nebraska Travel Association. He is hopelessly enamored with his wife Rachel and daughter Louise, and a dedicated follower of the New York Mets, Nebraska sports, and Tennessee Titans. He spends his spare time coaching girls' youth soccer and basketball as well as making “best of” lists about music, movies, and television.