5 and Thriving: Our Fifth Year In Review

Rosie came back into view, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” took center stage, Barack and Hillary stepped up to the presidential plate. NYC lost the Roxy and CBGBs, Britney lost her long locks, our community lost a dear activist, Barbara Gittings. And Ellen became the most visible, successful lesbian in the universe. A look back at the events that shaped GO’s world in the past year.

It seems the public embraces the real Ellen DeGeneres more than her on-screen gay character on Ellen in the mid ‘90s. Since the show’s cancellation, and her subsequent idle career years, the comedian has sprung back into the world of celebrity at the top of the ranks—literally. At 49, Ellen has made Forbes magazine’s 2007 list of The Richest 20 Women in Entertainment. Number 17 to be exact, sandwiched between Gisele Bündchen and Nicole Kidman (and that’s a nice place to be).

With the success of her talk show, The Ellen Degeneres Show, which is in its fourth season and has nabbed 15 Emmys, Ellen’s resilience earned her the People’s Choice Award this year for Favorite Talk Show Host. In an interview with W magazine in February, Ellen said, “I want the show to reach people and to be something positive. Because the world is full of a lot of fear and a lot of negativity, and a lot of judgment. I just think people need to start shifting into joy and happiness.”

That uplifting spirit and positive energy may have been what finally earned her the gig of her dreams: hosting the 79th Annual Academy Awards. Though it would be tough to follow the acts of Billy Crystal (eight-time host), Ellen’s clean, wide-appealing humor was just what the Oscars needed. It’s what we all need. And that’s why we love her. It certainly has been Ellen’s year.

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