Ever wonder what it takes to have a day named after you in New York? No small feat but Rita Cosby's "extraordinary journalism and exemplary service on behalf of her community," inspired the State of New York to officially name October 11th, "Rita Cosby Day."
Rita Cosby has had an illustrious TV career. She has traveled the world interviewing world leaders from Israel to Palestine to the Vatican where she interviewed Pope John Paul II. She was the first reporter to see prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, on site providing extensive live coverage during Hurricane Katrina and reported live from the war zone in Afghanistan. Rita is also the author of two New York Times bestsellers Blonde Ambition and more recently Quiet Hero: Secrets From My Father's Past. Embed with Rita for a night in NY and you may find yourself at as many as nine NY charity events filled with crowds clamoring for some face time and seeking insight on the news, one of a kind stories and that magic infectious energy that beams right out of her.
Rita is also a three-time Emmy winning TV host who anchored highly rated primetime shows on Fox News Channel and MSNBC. She is currently a special correspondent for the top-rated CBS syndicated newsmagazine Inside Edition and hosts WOR's nationally syndicated radio program, The Rita Cosby Show.
To start the new year, we sat down with the lovely, hilarious and incredibly talented born and bred New Yorker for a "girl power" breakfast to learn about her passion for our great metropolis and her hometown.
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NYN: What does it mean to you to have a day named after you? How did that come about?
RC: It is a tremendous honor. I just wish they threw in free parking for one day! NY officials suddenly presented the "Rita Cosby Day" honor to me at a special gala, thanking me for my work in journalism and helping the military... It was an unexpected and wonderful surprise for me!
NYN: Where did you grow up -- Tell us your earliest childhood memory of NYC.
RC: I was born in Brooklyn and the first few years we lived in a little pink house with a perfect backyard for throwing snowballs at my older brother and quickly running away when it was payback time!
NYN: If you could change, improve or enhance one thing in NYC what would it be?
RC: I'd have to change three things-- lower the rents, lower the price of my favorite vente vanilla cappuccino at Starbucks and demand all taxi drivers take singing lessons before they drive us through Central Park!
NYN: What is the greatest positive development you've seen in the city in recent years?
RC: My bestselling book Quiet Hero available at Gristedes supermarkets... next to the deli section!
NYN: What are some of your favorite things to do in NYC today? Places you like to go?
RC: I love sipping prosecco at the antipasto bar at Trattoria Dell 'Arte on Seventh Avenue in Midtown after watching a great concert at Carnegie Hall. Also, for the best day or even an hour of relaxation, I go to the Red Door Spa on Fifth Avenue. After a busy week covering current events, especially the crazy Presidential race, a little time to de-stress is invaluable! The prosecco helps to that end as well!
NYN: What do you love about NYC?
RC: The diversity of its people and where else can you get fresh sushi delivered at 2:30 a.m.? The city is always alive and electric. I am so proud to be a native New Yorker.
NYN: You travel all over the world, what part of your New York native self do you bring on the road with you?
RC: Mace, vodka and the ability to hail a cab in any language!
This story was previously published on nynatives.com.