Hollywood on the Potomac

Celebrating American Diplomacy

January 23, 2020

“I think I was invited for the gender diversity,” joked The Ambassador of Singapore Ashok Kumar Mirpuri who participated in the 80th Anniversary of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP), at the National Museum of American Diplomacy. The event officially kicked-off the yearlong celebration that cultivates an open dialogue about how countries around the world can utilize ECA resources to increase cultural connections with the United States.

“Eighteen years ago when The Department of State and the United States started this program, it was a very different world,” he said. “Today we are connected to each other by social media, by technology. Eight years ago, unless you came to the United States personally, you really didn’t know anything about it. And yet programs like this remain very relevant even for someone coming today for them to have an opportunity to come here, visit small towns, cities around the United States to compare notes, exchange ideas. The programs remains relevant particularly with many of the global challenges that we face and I encourage the department to stick, to continue, this program and keep expanding it in order to create new opportunities for us to be here. Singapore and the United States share a very close relationship. This idea of people to people exchanges remains very critical for us in today’s world.”


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Celebrating Ambassador Esther Coopersmith's 90th Birthday

January 20, 2020

“Esther, thank you for being an agent for peace among your friends and also for bringing people together globally whether it’s at the United Nations or UNESCO. She has an encyclopedic knowledge of leaders in the world and {knows} the opportunities for us to make the world a safer place. So on behalf of your many friends, I want to lift a glass to salute the great Esther Coopersmith,” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi when toasting the 90th birthday of Ambassador Esther Coopersmith at Esther’s elegant home in the tony Kalorama neighborhood of Washington, DC hosted by Jeffrey, Connie, Jonathan Coopersmith and Janet Pitt.

“I’m actually hosting 40 guests next door for the occasion of the visit of Ireland’s European Commissioner Ben Hogan who is here for trade negotiations between the European Union and the United States. And there you are,” said Daniel Mulhall, The Ambassador of Ireland who virtually live next door. “I recognize in Ambassador Coopersmith someone who believes in the international system. She worked as The Ambassador to The UN back in the 1970s and since that time she has carried the torch for international harmony and understanding. And today, it’s more important than ever  that we recognize that international harmony and the value of working together across the globe to try and resolve our problems through the United Nations to the multilateral agencies that were set up after the Second World War and which Ambassador Coopersmith has spent a lifetime representing. I wish her all the very best for her 90th birthday. And thank you for being such a wonderful neighbor.”


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Jane Fonda Supports IndieCollect

January 14, 2020

We’re going to miss actress and climate change activist Jane Fonda who has been in Washington on the lawn of the US Capitol building since mid-October doing Fire Drill Fridays inspired by Greta Thunberg and the youth climate strike movement.  She was joined by celebrities Sally Field, Martin Sheen, Sam Waterston, Ted Danson, and Diane Lane – most of whom were either detained or arrested. Her last Fire Drill Friday was January 10th before she returned to LA where she will continue to bring attention to the climate emergency. During her visit, she was also here promoting another cause close to her heart – IndieCollect – honored by New York Film Critics Circle at a Star-Studded Ceremony with Steve Buscemi on January 7 for “essential work preserving American independent film.”

“Back in the heyday of Hollywood the studios did their own restoration and it costs money and it takes up a lot of space because you have to store all these films in temporary rooms,” Jane Fonda told guests at an intimate dinner in her honor at the home of Catherine Wyler and Richard Rymland in Washington, DC. to support IndieCollect.  “As studios cut back, they cut back on the space and they started farming the job of restoration out to other places that looked like a bombed basement. It was filled with cans turned upside down. It was unbelievable when I heard some of the films that were there; some of them were entertainment films, but some of them were documents of American history that we just can’t lose.”


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