Sunday, December 19, 2010

Power Broads

One was the First Lady of the United States in the early 1960s and has been dead for almost twenty years. The other is currently the Speaker of the New York City Council and is openly gay. But, different as they were and are, Jackie Kennedy Onassis and Christine Quinn have to be two of the most fascinating professional women NYC has ever produced.

After JFK's assassination in 1963 and her disastrous marriage to Aristotle Onassis ended in 1975, Jackie spent the last 19 years of her life as a book editor. At the time, the idea that a former First Lady would actually go to work for a living was amazing. But Jackie did it and proved that, just because she was once married to the most powerful man in the world, didn't mean she couldn't have her own career and professional accomplishments. This recent article from Vanity Fair tells you how she did it and is a must read.

Christine Quinn was born a generation later and there was never any doubt that she could have a career. But being an openly gay woman makes it hard to succeed in the rough and tumble world of politics. However, Christine Quinn persevered and is now the second most powerful person in the city (after Mayor Bloomberg) and is the most powerful woman NYC history (thus far). What's most amazing about Christine is that, besides her powerful job and trailblazing role, is how ordinary she is. As this short New York Times pieces shows, she's just a regular New Yorker -- meaning she's tough as nails, smart as a whip, and has excellent taste.  

Jackie and Christine -- only in New York. 


  1. It would be nice to have an openly gay, female politician as the second most powerful politician in NYC if she hadn't been exposed on multiple occasions for budget corruption and campaign corruption; if she didn't have the worst human rights voting record of all Manhattan Council Members; if she curb our freedom of assembly by signing a back room deal with the NYPD to require permits; if she hadn't blocked every animal protection bill introduced at City Hall; if she didn't make back room deals with real estate developers that have destroyed neighborhoods; if she hadn't strong-armed the City Council to overturn term limits against the will of NYC voters; if she hadn't betrayed her progressive roots which put her into power in the first place, etc. Those are a few reasons why dozens of NYers (gay and straight) have come together to protest her at her public appearances.

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