Meet Cemre (Gem-rah) Lively, the executive assistant/director of operations at Strictly Business (

Tell us a little about your business.Strictly Business is a local news and direct marketing magazine in Omaha and Lincoln that is strong in print and online. We are all about branding names and faces because people like to do business with people they know, like, and trust. With over 29 years of experience, we are proud of our reputation as a reliable and positive publication and grateful for the opportunity to promote so many amazing local businesses and organizations each month.

How did you get started in the business? – I went to school at East Tennessee State University and studied public relations and advertising, as I’ve always had a love for all things surrounding writing, media, and marketing. I’ve had various jobs since then, including human resources and even being a barista for a year! I moved from Lafayette, CO to Lincoln in July of 2022 with my husband and two pups, and I was lucky enough to come across Strictly Business’ job posting. After meeting Paige and the team, I already felt at home.

Tell us a little about your family. – My mom is originally from Turkey, and we still have quite a bit of family there. She lives in the same small Tennessee town I was born in. My older brother lives in Florida, and so do my husband’s parents, sister and brother-in-law, and our two beautiful nieces. My husband Joe and I have two fur children, Ollie and Ovi!

What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know? – My name is always a hot topic! It’s spelled Cemre, but pronounced “Gem-rah”. It’s Turkish and it’s a word that encompasses the signs of seasons changing, like leaves dropping in the fall or water getting warm in summer. I always say my mom obviously wanted me to be outgoing with the name she gave me – I always have an ice breaker!

Who inspires you? – My best friend, Mandi, is an incredible example of what it means to be a hard-working person. She always has meaningful, sound advice and has built a beautiful life for herself and her family. I look up to her and am grateful to have such a solid person in my life.

What is your greatest talent that you don’t utilize in your daily work life? – I don’t know if this is my greatest talent, but I have several corners of my home full of random crafting hobbies that I’ve been into over the years. No one at the office has asked me to cross stitch them something, but if they did, I could make it happen.

If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be? – I would love to be a full time artist.

What is your favorite book or the last good book you read? – The last good book I read was Letters From Istanbul by Lucy Foley. It’s a really moving story.

What is your favorite movie? – I love the movie 500 Days of Summer.

What is your favorite TV show? – I’m a huge fan of The Office. It’s been my comfort show for years! My husband and I also love binging reality TV, our favorite is 90 Day Fiancé.

If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be? – Sharing nachos with Seth Rogan sounds like a super fun way to spend a day.

If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?; (402) 466-3330;