01/25/2013 09:52 pm ET

Jenna Elfman, '1600 Penn' Star, Ranks Her Favorite First Ladies (VIDEO)

Actress Jenna Elfman, star of NBC's new show "1600 Penn," says she did extensive research on our nation's first ladies to prepare herself for the same role on television.

It may come as no surprise, but Michelle Obama ranks near the top of her list of favorites.

Elfman told HuffPost Live's Jacob Soboroff that she admires Obama's "grace" and her "need to maintain a good public persona," something her character struggles with on the show.

"Michelle Obama inspires me, in my character in that way, of the need to maintain some public grace," Elfman said. "My character fails often at it."

The actress said she also draws inspiration from Eleanor Roosevelt, who she said stands out for her feistiness and strong point of view.

"She helped write the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with the United Nations," Elfman told HuffPost Live. "She's a woman in that era doing that, and getting it done. That's amazing."

Watch the Full Segment on HuffPost Live.