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Posts Tagged ‘Norah O’Donnell’

Bonnie Fuller, Jill Zarin and Why Jeff Greenfield Skipped This Year’s State of the Union Address

LunchAtMichaelsYou’d never know hell had officially frozen over if you’d been at Michael’s today. The forsythias were in bloom, a few intrepid media mavens were barelegged (I kid you not) and the power-lunch scene was firing on all cylinders. Unfortunately, my date was detained in the studio shooting a popular television show, but I soldiered on into Manhattan, bundled up in my long-forgotten fur coat (No judgment, thank you) that makes me look like Yogi Bear’s wife to make my appointed Wednesday rounds. And it’s a good thing I did. At Table One, Hollywoodlife.com’s Bonnie Fuller had assembled a particularly interesting roster of media types (including CNN’s Christine Romans, AOL’s Brian Balthazar , ”Mayor” Joe Armstrong and our own Chris Ariens among them) as well as the requisite reality-show refugee who, in this case, was Jill Zarin. A little birdie told me the former Real Housewives of New York City cast member is getting the Where Are They Now? treatment from none other than Oprah Winfrey for an upcoming episode. The fickle finger of fate has quite the sense of humor.

Lunch at Michaels

Meta moment: Does a power lunch at 55th and Fifth count if no one’s there to see it? I think we know the answer to that one.

Before the overflow crowd sat down to discuss Justin Bieber‘s latest contretemps and why Madonna looked like the love child of the Quaker Oats man and Mae West at the Grammys, I spent some time mingling with the crowd. Bonnie introduced me to her 23-year-old daughter Sofia Fuller who was “helping out” at today’s luncheon since Bonnie is currently without a publicist (but not for long, I suspect). Clever Sofia told me that she is “definitely” interested in a career in media and has her heart set on landing something in e-commerce.

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Norah O’Donnell: ‘Those Tapes Will Never See the Light of Day’

NorahODonnellCBSCBS This Morning co-host Norah O’Donnell made headlines this week thanks to a rare interview with His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. But she was also part of a fun little item by Reuters NYC correspondent Chris Taylor.

Taylor, after recently asking some finance gurus about their first jobs, decided to pose the same question to high-profile journalists. O’Donnell’s answer is hard to beat. At age 10, with her father stationed with the military in Seoul, South Korea, she agreed to help create some English-language learning tapes to help her fellow students meet a middle school requirement:

“That rolled into doing a TV program for the Korean equivalent of PBS. It was 30 minutes every week, I sat in the middle of a Korean woman and an American guy, and we would do little skits in English and Korean.”

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Slam Dunk | Keep Complaining | Moving On

TVNewser: Norah O’Donnell is a Shaq fan. She even gives him a pass for lending vocals to Aaron Carter’s “That’s How I Beat Shaq.”

SocialTimes: Google is adding tabs to GMail, but people will still find a way to humblebrag about their inboxes.

TVSpy: A veteren reporter resigns after being told he was “too painful to watch.” Probably not the best place to work for anyway.

Dishing With Scandal‘s Tony Goldwyn; Catching Up With Michael Strahan

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It was a regular boys club at Michael’s today with not one, but two football legends (Michael Strahan, Frank Gifford), several captains of industry (William Lauder, Jonathan Tisch), publishing hot shots (Jack Kliger, Jared Kushner) and the hottest actor on broadcast television, Tony Goldwyn, who plays the adulterous, murderous President Fitzgerald Grant III on everyone’s guilty pleasure, Scandal. For the record, the power gal contingent was nicely represented by Norah O’Donnell and media mavens Katherine Oliver and Cindy Lewis.

Everyone (and I do mean everyone) was abuzz with Tony’s arrival in the dining room so, of course, I just had to say hello. He couldn’t have been more pleasant about doing an impromptu interview about the runaway success of Scandal and offered his take on being a red hot leading man at 53. It was a bit trippy, really, comparing the relaxed, friendly actor who was casually clad in a plaid shirt and jeans (he’s from Los Angeles, after all) with the uptight, angst-ridden politico he plays on the small screen. Grandson of legendary studio head Samuel Goldwyn, Tony’s has had a journeyman’s career with stints on film (most memorably as villain Carl Bruner in Ghost), television (recurring roles on Dexter and Law & Order: Criminal Intent) and several roles on Broadway, including the musical Promises, Promises. Surprisingly, Goldwyn has never been a staple in the likes of People and the other glossies. When I asked him what it meant to have true stardom come along relatively late in his career he told me, “It’s definitely different than if it had happened earlier; I’m very grateful.”

Tony Goldwyn and Diane Clehane

Speaking of grateful, more than a few of my friends look forward to Tony’s steamy scenes with his co-star Kerry Washington. (His wife, Jane Musky, doesn’t watch those encounters.) “We definitely push the boundaries,” he said. I told him it’s often hard to remember that Scandal is on network television rather than cable. “In a way, it’s because of cable that [series creator Shonda Rhimes] has been able to up the level of things and be more bold.” Read more

Hillary Clinton, Oprah Winfrey Celebrate Women in the World

In her opening remarks on the second day of The DailyBeast/Newsweek Women in the World Summit, former Secretary of State and New York Senator Hillary Clinton called women’s rights the 21st century’s “unfinished business.”

“The world is changing beneath our feet, and it is past time to embrace a 21st-century approach to advancing the rights and opportunities of women and girls,” Clinton said. “Technology, from satellite television to cell phones, from Twitter to Tumbler, is helping to bring abuses out of the shadows and into the center of global consciousness.”

Clinton’s remarks framed the morning session of panel discussions at the Summit. Clinton’s daughter Chelsea, a board member at The Clinton Foundation and a special correspondent for NBC News, was the morning’s first moderator, steering a panel about women’s roles in science, math and computer programming. The morning’s other moderators included ABC News anchor Cynthia McFadden, former CNN anchor Campbell Brown and CBS News anchor Norah O’Donnell.

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Cynthia McFadden, Gayle King and Blythe Danner at the Bar

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School is back in session! The faithful have returned to Michael’s and the place was buzzing with activity as the media mavens, talking heads and social swells sailed into the dining room. Table One (Cynthia McFadden, Lesley Stahl and a host of other power gals) was the center of gravity, while the rest of the dining room was a tasty mix of spinmeisters (Gil Schwartz),  fashionistas (Julie Macklowe) and literary types (Long time no see, David Hirshey).

I was joined today by two of the stars of Bravo’s Gallery Girls, the freshman reality series chronicling the professional lives of seven ambitious New York gals toiling in the “cutthroat environment” (according to the show’s press release) of the New York City art world.  Oh, the pressure! Kerri Lisa and Claudia Martinez are not your average Bravo-lebrities. The two gorgeous — and tall! — young women were downright earnest in describing their experience as twentysomethings in the city and their commitment to their careers. ” I don’t like drama. I’m pretty even keeled,” Kerri told me. “I think I have an inspiring story. I’ve built this little life for myself that shows if you work hard and are passionate about it, you can do it.” As for Claudia, she wants to concentrate more on “philanthropic” works in the coming years. Not exactly a page out of Nene Leaks’ handbook.

Kerri Lisa, Claudia Martinez, Diane Clehane and Julia Nietsch

Kerri Lisa, Claudia Martinez, Diane Clehane and Julia Nietsch

Having filmed the series over the course of four months last year, both Kerri and Claudia agree it’s a bit difficult watching themselves now on the show. “I can’t even listen to myself on my answering machine,” Kerri told me. “It’s interesting, because you rarely get the chance to see yourself the way other people might see you,” said Claudia. Even if the producers went for the most Bravo-esque snippets of otherwise everyday scenarios, she continued, “I said everything and did everything they showed and I’m comfortable with that.”

Kerri, who grew up on Long Island and graduated from Syracuse University in 2009, says the series showed just “the tip of the iceberg” when it comes to how hard the cast works in real life. Unlike some of the other women on the show, Kerri didn’t know anyone from the cast and was pretty much on her own when it came to dealing with the rest of the women. “I didn’t trust anyone in the beginning and still don’t,” she told me. Having gone to college fully expecting to follow in the footsteps of her family members that work in investment banking, Kerri told me her eyes were opened to other possibilities during college internships in public relations and at a luxury concierge service.  She changed her major to entrepreneurship and landed in the art world. “I want to work for myself s0meday.” Doesn’t everybody?

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MSNBC on the National Mall

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This is who we think is Norah O’Donnell reporting from the National Mall a couple of blocks away from the Capitol Building and a couple of days before the inauguration. You can also see MSNBC contributor and Washington Post writer Jonathan Capehart on the screen filing a report.

Another photo after the jump.

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RNC ’08: Scenes From the Riverside Press Center

100_3223.jpgFBNY took the long way to the CNN Grill today, through the Riverside Center which is doubling as the Press Tent, except unlike Denver this one has actual bathrooms and a steady Internet connection (all the media types have been raving about their work digs here). Along the way we passed Tom Brokaw having a curbside chat with David Gregory and Norah O’Donnell and Mark Whitaker discussing their NYC departure times. This is day 14 of conventioning for a lot of people and folks are getting antsy to get home.

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