This week’s exorbitant shoe-buying sessions and triple-returned Zara blazers make one thing clear: Ellies ’08 fever is upon us (and we’ll have related features with some of your favorite nominees running all next week on the main site, plus the live blog once again next Thursday to prove it). However, we picked up the phone yesterday to ring Marlene Kahan, executive director of the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) for something other than a request to revisit placing us in the nosebleed seats again (hint, hint…).
This Saturday in Manhattan at the 14th annual Parkinson’s Unity Walk, Kahan will be honored with the Alan Bonander Humanitarian Award, recognizing her efforts to elevate awareness and raise funds to drive research toward a cure for the disease. In that spirit, Kahan, who herself was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s in 2003, gave a firsthand account of learning she had the disease in the May issue of Bazaar. We spoke with her about the piece, the “purpose” she feels raising awareness of Parkinson’s, and whether she thinks the magazine industry does enough for staffers battling diseases like hers.