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  • Writer's pictureCelena Rubin

The Legendary Barbara Walters

Updated: Nov 3, 2023

The Barbara Walter’s Special

Having worked for ABC network national news shows including 20/20 and Good Morning America for 17 years of my career, I have done makeup on many important people from our favorite celebrities that shaped our childhoods to presidents that shaped our country and our lives. However, when I’m asked “Who have you worked with?”, there are only a few stand out names that immediately come to mind. One of them is Barbara Walters.

Only two times in my life have I been truly star struck by a telephone call, and one time just took me plain off guard. Imagine this. When I answered my cell phone and heard that Barbara Walters distinct familiar voice in my living room, I was overwhelmed with disbelief. I shared the voice with my husband. “It’s Barbara Walters!” I whispered. She was right there in our house. She could practically see me with no shoes on, dishes on the counter, and my daughter’s books spread across the floor. She simply wanted to know if I was bringing rollers. You better believe I was.

When you’re doing hair and makeup for Barbara Walters, you better up your A game. You know you are dealing with a strong personality that gets what she wants. After all, she is Barbara Walters. She paved the way for women in journalism. She was the first co-host on the Today Show. She created opportunity for other women to become co-anchors in a male dominated career. She interviewed the top celebrities, presidents, and other important politicians that sculpt our world. She dared to ask the questions nobody else would. She was a heroine among women and stood for strength as she broke down barriers. Even Oprah on Oprah Daily said, “Without Barbara Walters, there wouldn’t have been me—nor every other woman you see on evening, morning, and daily news. She was indeed a Trailblazer.

I was lucky enough to get to do her hair and makeup. I’ll be honest, it was challenging to be around someone who’s had her hair and makeup done by the same team for 30 years before I stepped in, because ABC wouldn’t pay to have them come to LA. She was not happy they weren’t there, and had high expectations of me. I held up though, and did my job, and when it was all over I received the biggest hug from Barbara Walters. It was worth the stress. I got to work with a legend, and I would have never met her if it wasn’t for being a makeup artist!

And if you want to know who the other person who called my cell was, you’ll have to ask 😉

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