Boca’s foremost emcee shared her business savvy and celebrity secrets from her Big Apple interview show. “Never did I think I would be on TV,” Arlene Herson said at Boca Chamber’s Successful Women in Business Luncheon.
Yet, the list of celebrities she interviewed over the years is in the 100s. And The Arlene Herson Show is still seen on reruns on New York cable, she said at the Waterstone Resort & Marina Thursday.
Herson shared clips of surprisingly candid remarks from the show she started in the late ‘70s. Actress Suzanne Somers talked about how hard it was to ditch her ditzy image after “Three’s Company.” “Dynasty’s” Linda Evans had to learn how to be alone after her husband left her for a younger Bo Derek.
“I always did my homework, so I knew most of what they would say,” Herson said.
She and most women don’t start out knowing what they want to do, Herson said. She sold advertising space, then literally seized every opportunity that came her way. That led to her TV show.
When her husband died, her family asked her to move back to Washington D.C., where she was an impresario. But by then, she was a patron of the arts and letters. And her life was in Boca where she’s also known for posting cell phone photos for her many Facebook followers.
At the luncheon were fellow Rotarians from the Downtown Club. Herson does red carpet interviews at their annual Mayors Ball. Supporters included women from Boca Ballet Theatre, where’s she’s a patron and sponsor. Also, there were people from some of the nonprofits she supports, from Florida Atlantic University [Constance Scott] to The Symphonia Boca Raton [Carole Boucard] and Habitat for Humanity Palm Beach County [Kari Oeltjen].
“I love the fact that you don’t call this charity,” said the chamber’s executive vice president Sarah Pearson. “What you do now is more powerful.”
By Marci Shatzman