2013 Transforming America Gala

2013 Transforming America Gala

Amy Poehler speaks at the 2013 Transforming America Gala on May 30, 2013.

Thank you very much. Thank you, Tamra. Thank you for that wonderful intro. I will keep my comments short but unlike Miles Rapoport I insist that you continue applauding at everything I say. Thank you, let’s keep it going. Don’t hold your applause.

I am very very honored and moved to be here tonight. Tonight is about celebrating smart and dynamic people and celebrating creative and ambitious people who are doing good work and also celebrating an actress who’s happy to be here. So thank you for having me. Gregory Rhinos, I’m very honored to be sharing the stage with you. Thank you for your amazing speech and your fine work and I’m truly humbled to be included in an evening that you are also a part of. So thank you.

I’m here tonight new to the Demos ethic and ethos and aesthetic and I’m very impressed and frankly humbled to be a part of all your…thank you, my ten dollar ring, excuse me. Thank you, that was a test and you passed. Thank you, thank you, yeah. Oh, thank you, let’s keep the applause going. But I’m here tonight because of a member of you, of Demos, of your legal counsel David Rubino, who is an old family friend of mine and and I’ve known since I was born. And I’m sharing this evening with his parents Lou and Marsha Rubino, over here tonight, as well as my parents Bill and Eileen Poehler and David’s beautiful wife Alicia. And I thank them for including me tonight. And also Kathleen Turner, who does not know it yet but is my new best friend. So Kathleen, hello. I’m very excited to spend every weekend with you until August.

I am the daughter of two public school teachers. Yes! I grew up lower middle class in Boston, Massachusetts. I had involved hard-working parents who taught me to work hard and help others and dream big and be smart and think and think about other people. I used to used to pass out flyers for Dukakis, what can I tell you? Ok, that’s my story. And we were a pro-union, pro-teacher, pro-women family. I am proud to be a product of that and I would like to take a moment for all of us to thank internally or externally, if they’re here tonight, to thank our parents because because of them or despite them, we are here tonight, so let’s give a round of applause to our parents. Some of which are here, some of which are not with us. And thank them for their good guidance, as I certainly do tonight.

I play a character on television who is an optimistic Parks and Recreation employee, who is now a young city councillor and it is a person who believes that one person can make a difference and we are all in it together and cynicism has no place in government and I do believe that. It’s TV but I believe that. I believe that you do too and I am impressed to be here tonight. I’m impressed with the youth and energy and clear vision of your organization. It is an honor to be included in your evening tonight. Thank You Demos for this evening and best of luck and congratulations and all your fabulous work ahead. Thank you.