Updated: May 19, 2022
I had the opportunity to go with one of my closest and oldest friends, Jenn, to be interviewed by Katie Couric in LA back in February.
Right before we took this photo Katie said "I'm going to hold both of your hands, ok?" and we all giggled like old friends!
As a broadcast journalism major it was a dream come true to meet her! She even spent a few hours after the interview asking me a bunch of questions about my experience on Capitol Hill, working in politics and I got to quickly tell her about Livlyhood. I'm forever grateful that Jenn asked me to go with her and to help her prepare for the interview of a lifetime!
Jenn asking me to come with her and to help her prepare to talk to Katie Couric was such an honor!
Here's what I learned from meeting one of my heroes:
1. Stars, they're just like us
I've met a lot of famous people from my PR and political work, and I'm often surprised by which ones are down to earth and which ones are different than you would've thought. Katie Couric was as relatable as can be and I was so impressed with how genuine she was. You can tell she doesn't like the fussy parts of her job and she wanted her hair and makeup done quickly so she could get down to business. I loved her sense of humor and how directly, but kindly, she communicated with her staff. She was such a delight to be around!
2. It's all about confidence
Katie (can I call her that?) walked in and I was immediately struck by how short she is, but her personality is BIG. I'm the daughter of a very short woman with a big personality and I've wondered since meeting her if she's had to compensate a bit for being so cute and petite. But she takes herself seriously and knows who she is, and that confidence wears off on the people around her. I felt like I could accomplish anything after meeting her!
I love that Katie Couric stepped in to help Jenn solve a wardrobe malfunction!
3. Stories are what unite us
After Jenn introduced me, I told Katie I loved reading her book and that I worked at NBC. She said "wait, you interned at NBC? I bet you felt like you were reading your life story as you read mine!" That made me laugh super loud because only a very humble woman would think that my life was anything like hers! But at it's core it was a compliment, and it was true! Our stories and our backgrounds are what unite us. You can tell she really cares about people and wants to know their stories.
The fact that Katie Couric was interested in my life story still blows my mind!
4. Soft skills are real skills
We often disregard the ability to communicate and make people feel at ease as unimportant skills compared to more tangible skills. But watching Katie Couric in action reminded me that those are skills that make money, and they should be celebrated.
5. Women change the world when they turn their pain into power
As a cancer widow herself, Katie has been through so much pain, and had to handle it all very publicly. In her book, she talks about how she threw herself into her work and started Stand Up for Cancer, and has promoted the genuine discussions around grief and death.
I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to rub shoulders with this woman who challenged barriers for women and changed the course of history. I am so inspired by her resilience and strength.