Ann Curry Gets Her Ego Stroked

Hey got a new book? Want it featured on the Today show? Try putting Ann Curry on the cover! The new book Extraordinary Women: Fantasies Revealed was featured in the 9:30 half hour of this morning's Today show. The cover of the book happens to feature Curry actually embracing the Earth. Curry even appeared as a guest on the segment with the book's authors. Natalie Morales conducted the interview and revealed Ann's not-so-secret fantasy: "And Ann the reason you are holding the globe is you talk about wanting to be a humanitarian, which as a journalist, I mean you do, I mean that's really a priority in your life." But one of the book's authors Ilene Leventhal pointed out Curry, as a liberal crusading journalist, is already living her dream: "I said to Ann, I said, 'Ann you already are a humanitarian.'"

Judging from some of the book's photos aired during the segment Curry is in good liberal company. Among the photos featured were ones of former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright playing chess, White House correspondent Helen Thomas in pearls, Sen. Barbara Mikulski in a lab coat, author Kitty Kelley sporting a mink stole and even former Rep. Patricia Schroeder in a super hero costume.

The full segment can be found right after this ego-stroking Ann received from Katie and Natalie at the top of the 9:30 half hour:

Natalie Morales: "Still to come here in this half hour we're gonna take a look at the hidden dreams and real hopes of some extraordinary women like Helen Thomas, Madeleine Albright, Joan Rivers and even our very own Ann Curry."

[Photos from the book including Thomas and Albright]

Ann Curry: "Even, even?"

Morales: "Our very own graces the cover of the book so you'll get to see that."

Curry: "The book is called Extraordinary Women. I'm on the cover of it, can you believe it?"

Couric: "Well you deserve to be. I think you're extraordinary."

Curry: "Well that's sweet of you."

...

Natalie Morales: "If you could choose a fantasy career what would it be? Well that is exactly the question Ilene Leventhal and Francine Levinson asked successful women across the country for their new coffee table book called Extraordinary Women, Fantasies Revealed. And our own Ann Curry as you see there was tapped for the book. She's on the cover looking beautiful as always. Good morning to all of you ladies. Nice to have you here."

[Francine Levinson]

[Ilene Leventhal]

Ann Curry: "Good morning."

Morales: "Well these photos and the book is magnificent. And Francine why don't you tell me first about the photos. I mean it really is amazing to see some of these extraordinary women in a different element."

[Photos from the book including Madeleine Albright and a picture of former Rep. Patricia Schroeder in a super hero costume]

[Levinson]

Morales describing Joan Rivers photo: "And all the jewelry is hanging on that picture there. That's great."

[Levinson]

Morales: "And Ilene tell me how project came about because there's quite a back-story there."

[Leventhal: "Well Francine and I have been working with non-profits for years. I founded an organization called Hand-To-Hand and one of the programs is eviction prevention program for working poor families that come into crisis and to keep them off streets. And Francine has been president for the Police Boys and Girls Club of D.C. and we were just on the phone one day and we said, 'You know let's do something fun and different.' And also..."

Morales: "For charity, for a good cause."

[Leventhal: "For a good cause."]

Curry: "That will drive you crazy."

[Leventhal]

Morales: "And, and that tenacity really paid off because it started off with women like Alma Johnson Powell, Colin Powell's wife agreeing to do this as well as Helen Thomas, the White House correspondent, the first two. And once you had them kind of sign on to do this you were able to get others like Ann."

[Levinson]

[Leventhal: "We had to chase them a little. Right Ann?"]

Curry: "Well I think I had just come back from covering the tsunami and it was a, it was really a tough busy, busy time and I think I had a total of 15 minutes, Natalie, for that photo shoot. I walked in with a shirt and a pair of pants and I said, 'Okay put me to work. You got 15 minutes and boom!' They figured this out."

Morales: "And then you land on the cover."

[Photo from cover of the book showing Ann Curry with one arm around globe]

Curry: "And the photographer is really talented, number one. But by the way that is not a real world I'm holding on to. Actually the fun part is that actually is an exercise ball."

Morales: "It's a yoga ball. We've got a picture of that."

Curry: "It was fun, fun to be a part of it."

[Levinson]

[Leventhal]

Morales: "And Ann the reason you are holding the globe is you talk about wanting to be a humanitarian, which as a journalist, I mean you do, I mean that's really a priority in your life is, is being out there..."

Curry: "Yeah."

Morales: "...and really doing the kinds of stories that affect people. And you have a nice quote in there that your dad told you and you kind of lived by."

Curry: "Yeah. That's right. My dad always said to me and he still says to me to this day and he started saying this to me when I was very young. 'Ann whatever you do in life do something of some service to someone else because if you do you will know at the end of your days that it mattered that you were born.' And this, kind of, has sort of been my, my marching orders for my entire life in terms of my career. So the idea of having this be published and be part of what, the real me, in the book. You know the real thing that really motivates me was very, I think, well it was, it was neat to be able to have that opportunity to say that out loud.[Levinson: "We really did ask her for another fantasy, something that would be fun-loving and she said, 'No this is really what I'm about."]

Curry: "This is all, all it is..."[More photos from the book including shot of Sen. Barbara Mikulski in lab coat and one of Kitty Kelly wearing a mink stole]

Morales: "And so many of the women have that same experience. They wanted to show this other side of their personalities as well right?"

[Leventhal: "They did but they were fun things. I said to Ann, I said, 'Ann you already are a humanitarian.'"]

Curry: "Oh well, but you know I can say this about this book which is great, Natalie, is that I think that this might be useful to young girls to..."

[Leventhal]

[Levinson]

Morales: "You can always live that fantasy as well."

[Leventhal]

Morales: "The Olympic gymnast.

[Leventhal]

Morales: "Well a great message to end on and ladies thank you all and the book is called Extraordinary Women, Fantasies Revealed. Ilene Leventhal and Francine Levinson, Ann. Again thank you ladies."

Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center.