Westport Country Playhouse will host “Female Power Unleashed: Politics and Positive Change,” a Community Conversation with Alisyn Camerota, anchor of CNN’s “New Day,” and Patricia Russo, executive director of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale, on Monday, March 26, at 7 p.m. The hour-long conversation, including a 10-minute Q&A, will acknowledge Women’s History Month. Michael Barker, Westport Country Playhouse managing director, will moderate. Admission is free by reservation.
Following the discussion, Camerota will sign copies of her new novel “Amanda Wakes Up,” about an idealistic young journalist who finds herself with a plum spot at a cable news channel during a crazy presidential race. In addition to several giveaway copies, books will be available for purchase.
Describing the event, Russo said, “I find so many Americans hungry for this kind of dialogue, yet bogged down in the paralysis of partisanship. We’re having trouble talking these days. Our Community Conversation will openly discuss the rise of women entering politics and how this influx can change the face of government.”
Russo added, “We’ll tie in Alisyn’s work and observations as a journalist as well as a novelist. There are many similarities to the character in her new book and women running for office.”
Alisyn Camerota is a journalist and anchor of CNN's morning show "New Day.” In her three decades in journalism, Camerota has covered stories nationally and internationally, earning two Emmy Award nominations for her breaking news reporting. Camerota has been at the forefront of today’s most pressing news events, including the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in Houston, the Paris and Brussels terror attacks, and the Parkland, Florida school shooting. As a leading voice of the #MeToo movement, she has helped to provide the #SilenceBreakers with a platform to tell their stories. Outside of her role anchoring “New Day,” Camerota has anchored a number of primetime specials, including “Tipping Point: Sexual Harassment in America” and "The Hunting Ground: Sexual Assault on Campus." A national advisory council member of The News Literacy Project and an advisory member of Press Forward, Camerota is an outspoken proponent of First Amendment rights.
Prior to joining CNN, Camerota worked for many years at the Fox News Channel, most notably as part of the “Fox & Friends” franchise and as co-host of “Fox & Friends Weekend.” Her first novel “Amanda Wakes Up” was published by Viking in 2017. It was selected by National Public Radio as one of the best books of the year, and by Oprah Magazine as “a must read.” The paperback edition will be published in June. Camerota lives with her husband and three children in Westport, Connecticut.
Patricia Russo is a nationally recognized leader focused on improving the quality of life for women in Connecticut and the U.S. For over 25 years she has held numerous leadership positions in public, private, and not-for-profit organizations centered on women’s rights. She has also held leadership positions on federal, state, and local political campaigns. Currently, Russo serves as executive director of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University, a non-partisan, issue-neutral, political campaign training program for women interested in running for public office, and for women interested in campaign management as well as in appointed positions. Based at Yale Law School, it is a leading program attracting women from the U.S. and internationally.
Russo is a member of the national leadership team of Political Parity, a bi-partisan initiative dedicated to increasing the number of women in elected office. She is the founder of the Connecticut Women’s Agenda, a state-wide advocacy coalition comprised of women leaders, and was named “Woman of the Year” by the Connecticut Chapters of both the American Association of University Women and Business and Professional Women. Russo was director of Southern Fairfield County’s Centers for Planned Parenthood of Connecticut, and executive director of the Middlesex County Sexual Assault Crisis Center. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from the George Washington University. While an undergraduate, she served as an intern to U.S. Congresswoman Bella S. Abzug (D-NY), who, Russo says, inspires her to this day.
Tickets are free-of-charge by reservation by calling the Playhouse’s box office at 203-227-4177, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or in person at 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Online reservations are unavailable for this event. Seating is general admission; limit of four free tickets per household.