(Photo: Jeannette with Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Atlantic, at the Airline's Opening, Both Guest of Mayor Richard Daley.)
I made my living as a photography business director and photographer for years between 1979-1997. When I left that career to start this nonprofit in 2000, I continued to carry a camera with me everywhere I went. You'd think being in this creative profession the last thing I would do is misplace my celebrity photos of notables I met over the past 20 plus years. I had not seen these original photos since 2015.
My parents died in the late '90s. Shortly after that I started this foundation named after them called the Lawrence E. and Matilda C. Moore Foundation, without a clear idea or direction and only $1000 to invest. A few years later, inspired by my father's giving nature and my connection with growing up pretty poor, its mission became clear, as sponsorKIDS Charities 501c3 and PeaceJourney cultural trips and programs for mid to high school students.
With COVID19 reeking havoc on our daily lives, I bet you too find yourself organizing and disposing of 'stuff'. We moved to Chicago in 1987, and later downtown to my now 26 year old office in Chicago on the top floor of a hundred-plus year old brick, concrete and timber printing factory turned loft. In that office, I have a sizable closet with 10 foot ceilings, neatly arranged with marked boxes; 18 boxes total, and 12 of those boxes filled with photo memories from childhood, adulthood, parenting, business events and travel.
Just last week, I decided to delve into the photo boxes in search of my celebrity photos. I started out just wanting to find them. Each of the 12 boxes I opened, one by one, took me on a detour from the celebrity search to long trips down memory lane, covering each phase of my life. I decided to slow down and organize photos by siblings, family and friends, putting tons of photos in plastic 8x10 bags I had from my photo days and labeling them for give away. Yes, there were some tears, some laughs, times I had forgotten and ones I'd probably better off to leave behind.
Then, I popped open box 8 and there it was, a bag titled "Jeannette's Celebs" inside a black picture portfolio. The celebrity photos inside were one's I had met between 2000 until 2015 and feature a wide array of my hairstyles and colors. They have been filed away since then. It's been that long since I have felt the joy of these meetings and reminded of the amazing people who cared to make these introductions, along with the hopes, meditations and visualizations for a better world that brought them, one by one, into my life.
I will be sharing these celebrity photo with you each week as I just reach inside my "Jeannette's Celeb" bag, in no particular order of time. I'll share my stories of how we met and why it's important. Each one has meaning. Each one gave me insight into the world of celebrity and the value added understanding of an industry unknown to me at the time, and respected for what a difference celebrity can make to a small yet dynamic nonprofit like ours.
As a young girl I had been to music concerts, but I never met a celebrity, unless you count the time at age 16 after a Three Dog Night concert in Cincinnati, my girlfriend and I were offered a beer by the guitar player and an invite to leave that night and travel on the road with the band. I always regretted not having a camera for that photo opp! My older sister and I also went to see the Beetles when we were in our early teens. No photos of that either!
Stay tuned over the next few weeks for fun stories of how these celebrities and I came together and why I believe it matters! It's been and continues to be quite the adventure and love story for an industry I adore!