Editors Note: This blog was written by Vision 2020 Arkansas Delegate, Robin Hall Guadagnini
I was saddened today to read the passing of fellow Arkansan, Helen Gurley Brown, who took the magazine Cosmopolitan to realms never seen before in a magazine, and challenged women to believe in themselves and trust in themselves.
She was an amazing leader for women’s equality, and while she raised eyebrows on many issues, she paved the way for women of today to be free thinkers, embrace themselves, and have careers and beauty all rolled into one!
Growing up and realizing that such a powerful and influential leader came from Arkansas (before the Clinton Presidency) she was a true inspiration for a young girl in Fayetteville, AR. It helped me to realize that I wasn’t limited by what State or town I was from. I wasn’t limited by who I knew in life, or what trials came my way, I wasn’t limited by any THING, I could do or be whatever I wanted to become. Ms. Brown put it best “the Cosmo girl is someone who starts without much and who makes the most of what she has and keeps going” She influenced me to believe in myself!
And while so much of her life was devoted to being a strong female leader, and much of her writing was devoted to the single woman, she was happily married, for over 50 years which is why she always said, “Marry a decent, good, kind person who will cherish you”, which is what I have been lucky enough to do.
I also realize, growing up in the South, that she was a very controversial figure and pushed many envelopes in thinking, conversations, acceptable topics in public, etc., but I have to say…we as women would not be where we are now without one very influential Arkansas born Helen Gurley Brown.
May she rest in peace, and her legacy live on, and roads she paved continue into the sunset.