Kelly Rutherford via AllPosters
CGG got to talk to lots of big-shot ladies at the Gracies.
Here’s just a sample of who said what:
CELEBS GONE GOOD: What would you say to girls who are the victims of gossip at their schools?
KELLY RUTHERFORD (Gossip Girl): “I remember having a tough time with it in school as well. It’s tough. But I think just not let it affect your view on the world; know that you will get past school and do great things. But (if you’re being gossiped about) it usually means you’re standing out and there’s a reason: You’re special. Take it as a compliment.”
CGG: What’s your advice for teens who want to change the world?
JILL HENNESSY (Law & Order, Crossing Jordan): Go for it! Don’t let anybody tell you not to try. Life is too short. There’s going to be a lot of people out there who will let you think you can’t do certain things, and that will always exist. The fact that you can be incredible and change the world will always exist as well.”
CGG: You’re returning in August to ESPN. That’s a male-oriented environment. But tonight, you’re at the Gracies, which is quite a different crowd.
HANNAH STORM (ESPN’s SportsCenter, CBS’s The Early Show): “I started out as one of the few women in sports [reporting], and they gave me my first major award, and that really meant a lot to me. And making the switch to [hard] news, which was unbelievably unusual and a big chance, I got another Gracie. Having three daughters, this is my kind of event.
CGG: Do you have a favorite cause?
HS: I started a foundation this year, the Hannah Storm Foundation. It benefits children born with vascular birth marks, which can be really debilitating physically and emotionally, and their [treatment and/or removal] is not covered by insurance. So we’re raising money for children to come to New York to the Vascular Birthmark Institute and have surgeries. It’s really expensive, but so much progress . . . these kids can go on and live normal lives. Since I was born with one and had a lot of surgeries growing up, this is a really important cause for me.”
CGG: Who’s your female role model?
CHELSEA HANDLER (Chelsea Lately): Uh. . . Clay Aiken. I’d have to say Clay Aiken.
Chelsea Lately via ImageVault
CGG: Do you think your job would be easier if you were a man?
LARA LOGAN (Chief Foreign Correspondent, CBS News): It’s certainly easier because you can get up in the middle of the night and go on TV and not have to put your mascara on or worry that your shirt’s crumpled, but I don’t think it would be nearly as much fun.
CGG: Do you see yourself as empowering women?
LL: I do. I really had to fight hard as a woman, and I still have to fight hard. You don’t get taken as seriously by your colleagues, your opinions don’t carry as much weight. Every day is a struggle. I’m don’t mind doing that, I’m happy to do that; it’s part of being a woman. People write me and say, "I hope my daughter grows up to be like you," and I think that’s the greatest compliment anyone could ever pay you.
A few years ago, before there were were a lot of women doing this, there was an expectation that to be taken seriously, you had to be macho; you couldn’t be feminine and be a foreign correspondent. [Editor’s note: A war reporter for the past 15 years, Logan was the only American network journalist in Baghdad when American troops invaded the city, reporting live from Firdos Square as the statue of Saddam fell.] I think that’s changed a lot. I’ll be in Baghdad and I’ll wear a silk skirt if I’m going down to the embassy to see the Ambassador, and you can see people looking at you [like], "What is she doing? Doesn’t she know where she is?" But when you’ve been living in Baghdad for four years, pretty much no one can say that anymore.
CGG: How do you feel about fashion that is harmful to the environment or animals?
JULIA ALLISON: (Time Out New York columnist and The Star editor-at-large): I just wore this Phillip Lim dress that was apparently environmentally-conscious, but I have to be brutally honest: I don’t know what that means. I’m not stupid, I just don’t know what it is exactly, an environmentally-conscious dress. (Editor’s note: Environmentally-conscious clothes can be recycled or vintage, organic, vegan, or all of the above. Basically, to be eco-chic means to wear clothing that doesn’t bring harm to the environment or living creatures.)
CGG: Which powerful female impresses you the most?
RORY KENNEDY (Gracie winner, Outstanding Director, News Series or Special): Michelle Obama. There are so many extraordinary women who are making contributions in every part of the world now. I think 20 years ago that would have been an easier question to answer because there may have only been one or two women who were ahead in their fields, but now things have changed.
Amen to that, sisters!