Maybe you move in the upper echelons of society or more accurately in the inner circles of politics. If so the opportunity to get to meet one of the most influential and hard working women of our times would make you yawn. But if you’re like me, then the opportunity to see one of my greatest political Heroes, Hillary Clinton, a woman who has been serving this country since she was First Lady twenty-one years ago, is enough to induce the shakes and a loss of speech.
Secretary Clinton has written a new book, Hard Choices, about her four years as Secretary of State. On Wednesday she was in Seattle at the University Book Store and I was one of thirty people given a press pass, meaning I would be allowed to take photographs of the event. I’ve been to many author events and have even interviewed authors but something of this magnitude was a new experience. Our protocol included arriving at the store 2 hours early, signing in and being given credentials that clearly identified us as press. Our equipment was turned over to the Secret Service in an area specifically for the press, from where we could not remove it until the event was over. They went through it and then brought in a canine unit as well. We were then allowed back into the area after being wanded but could no longer leave the space. As the time for Clinton’s arrival approached the jockeying for position began. With beginner’s luck I staked out the spot at the end of the hallway where Clinton would appear. No one could stand directly in front of me, allowing me to get these great shots.
Because this was a book event, not a political one, there was no question and answer period, just Clinton, smiling and gracious and signing 1,200 books. I took over 300 photos and despite the many that were nothing but a close-up of a Secret Service man and Clinton in the background, I have none that show her without a smile. She also shook hands and spoke to everyone. When it was my turn to get my book I was so nervous I couldn’t say a word but she shook my hand and complimented me on my necklace. I am still smiling as I write this! Given that I hope she becomes the next President of the United States it was one of the highlights of my career.
Here are more photographs from a memorable afternoon:
Wow. You’re pictures are great and her smiles look so genuine. Now read the book and report back. She’s a woman I admire. She’s smart, sassy and has achieved great things.
Tanya- it’s over 600 pages so it may be a little while before I get it read but I plan on it!
Shannon @ River City Reading says
That’s just amazing to see all those copies of her book in the picture with the dog! It sounds like such an amazing event and I’m so glad you were able to go. I’m totally with you in the hoping she’s president camp (so let’s hope these photos have a whole new meaning in a few years).
It was definitely the highlight of my book blogging career!
Patrick Harrigan says
Shannon – She must run. We need her more than ever. She is smart. Touch and I think most people can’t help but like her. My wife and I have already committed to working on her campaign in Maine.
Casee Marie says
I’m speechless just reading about it! She’s one of my heroes as well, and I can’t wait to read the new book. What an amazing experience this must have been. Your photos turned out beautifully, too! Thanks for braving what must have been a rather intimidating event (I’d have been shaking like a leaf!) and sharing it with us!
Casee Marie- I was shaking! I wanted so much to say something about how much I respect her but no words came out!
Karen @ One More Page... says
What an amazing experience that must have been for you! Your pictures turned out great! Thanks for this recap – I would have been SO nervous to meet her!
Patrick Harrigan says
I ma reading “The Bully Pulpit” now but Sec. Clinton is soon to ocme. She is truly amazing. What a great experience…and you got a compliment too! WOW! Thanks for writing about this. It made my day.
Leah @ Books Speak Volumes says
What an amazing event! I’m so glad you were able to go. Your photos are fantastic, great job!
Sophie Canahai says
You are such a talented photographer…couldn’t help but be reminded of the good old “Azuwur” days. My fingers are crossed for Hilary too!
I was totally reverting to my days as a football photographer, Sophie!
I am THRILLED you were invited. I hope you appreciate how bright you are and how hard you worked to earn that well-deserved invite.
Meryl, your kind words mean so much. Thank you!
Cynthia Robertson says
Lucky you! Fabulous pics. Hope she runs – it’ll take that to get me to come out of my anti-voting lair.
Hey Pluck and Talent!! What an amazing experience – I’m giddy with you. Is there a story behind being one of the 30? Wait, football photography, what? Football??? Oh, this needs a bottle of wine…
Tami Crose says
One of my favorite memories is you and that camera. What an incredible opportunity. Loved the pics.
Katie @ Words for Worms says
That is SO COOL. I’m glad this turned out to be such an amazing experience for you!
Great photos, Catherine! It was fun to hear about your experience…what a once-in-a-lifetime event!!!