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Girls Rule: Glamour Again Celebrates the Women of the Year

Originally published in:
Fashion Wire Daily

"With my height and weight, I never thought I'd see myself in the pages of Glamour," joked Geraldine Ferraro last night, accepting the honor of being one of Glamour Magazine's 14 extraordinary Women of the Year. Receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award, Ferraro, who is battling bone marrow cancer, mused that despite the distinction, don't think she's "finished just yet" -- a touching moment in an evening that evoked both tears and laughter, as well as immense admiration.

Now in its 12th year, the event, held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, bestowed the orange orbit award, designed by the late Conde Nast editorial director Alex Liberman, upon an array of women making a difference in today's world: The Vagina Monologues' Eve Ensler, news reporter Diane Sawyer, Red Cross president Dr. Bernadine Healy, Broadway director Susan Stroman, and actresses Salma Hayek and Debra Messing, to name a few.

And though the celebrities in attendance (Hayek and Messing, as well as Rosie Perez, Molly Shannon, Harry Connick Jr. and Ed Norton) added a bit of star-studded cache, it was women like Liv Arnesen and Ann Bancroft (who bravely crossed a 50-degrees-below-zero Antarctica on foot) on whom the spotlight really shone. Even Hayek, dressed simply in a sleeveless black dress, seemed a bit humbled in accepting the award, stating quietly, "These women make me feel hopeful for humanity."

One of the most inspirational moments of the evening -- and there were many -- was when RAWA member Tahmeena Faryal spoke before the audience, concealing her identity with a photograph of RAWA's founder. A fatwa (or death warrant) has been issued against her group, the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, for documenting the Taliban's brutal treatment of women, as well as working underground to educate girls and coordinate healthcare and income-generating programs. So awe-inspiring was her story that Eve Ensler, also honored for championing women's civil liberties (her show has raised $5 million to combat violence against women worldwide), dedicated her award to the women of RAWA.

A candle-lit Temple of Dendur served as the reception area, where guests toasted each other. "These women are incredible. It's an absolute honor to be here among them," stated an ultra red-headed Debra Messing, elegantly clad in a Chanel strapless lace dress.

By Karin Nelson