Growing up in Youngstown, I had the privilege of seeing Catherine Bosley deliver the news on television- and, because my mom was her hairdresser, I got to know her as a person and the amazing human being that she is.
When I was 19 (showing my age here), I distinctly remember when the video of her, participating in a wet t-shirt contest, came out. It was around the same time that the Janet Jackson halftime show debacle happened, and it was the first time I had thought to myself “it’s BS that these women are being punished for having bodies, and daring to show them off. This isn’t fair.” Catherine was young, beautiful, and excellent at her job- and I was seeing, for the first time, how cruel the world can be to women who possess those attributes.
Following Catherine’s story, and her ability to fight back with both grace and dignity, is what, I believe, planted the seeds for BADASS. She had been unfairly maligned for doing something that harmed no one, and she fought back against one of the largest pornographic distributors in the world for publishing her images – and WON. She didn’t allow this to ruin her life, in fact- she turned that trauma into something bigger and more meaningful, and came out of the storm stronger for it.
When my pictures were shared, i channeled Catherine. I said to myself, if she could handle this on such a national level, I could get through this. When the idea for BADASS was nothing more than an inkling, I called Catherine for inspiration. To this day, she is someone I look up to for inspiration, and I’m extremely lucky to have her in my life as both a friend and mentor.
Please, watch her TEDtalk, and hear her story. It’s a great one, and hopefully it inspires you to do big things, as Catherine has inspired me.