Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bush names Colts coach to service panel

WASHINGTON - President Bush wants Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy to serve on a council on service and civic engagement.

The White House announced today that Bush intends to appoint Dungy for a two-year term on the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation.

The council was created by Bush in 2003 to recognize citizens' contributions to their communities including through the President's Volunteer Service Award.

Council members include leaders from business, entertainment, sports, education, government, nonprofits and the media. Other members include actors Hilary Duff and Stephen Baldwin, Super Bowl Champion Darrell Green, and ABC News political commentator Cokie Roberts.

Duff is amazing, and inspirational.


Hilary Duff featured in LA Direct

Hilary Duff is featured on the August 2007 cover of LA Direct Magazine. And also the cover story

Finally, someone is showing these Hollywood wrecking-balls that you can grab the media spotlight in positive ways. It doesn’t always have to be about endangering lives or nervous breakdowns. Other females in the entertainment industry are continually crashing their image in lows never before thought possible, and Duff’s looking and feeling better than ever.

The 19 year-old singer/songwriter/actress has just started her own national tour for her latest pop album, Dignity. She graced the covers of five magazines in July, and none of them were candid shots of a drunken Hilary, or a strung-out Hilary, or a tear-streaked, underwear-flashing, I’m-a-walking-disaster photo. Even after a double-blow last year, featuring the break-up of her two-and-a-half-year relationship with Joel from the band Good Charlotte, as well as her parents’ decision to file for divorce.

“I’m not that person who goes to fancy restaurants all the time and wants to be seen everywhere,” Duff said in a recent interview with Seventeen Magazine. “Yes, it’s fun every once in a while, but I’m not going to go places where I know I’m going to be photographed.” It’s about time someone was able to handle the responsibility. And Duff’s ability to do this is what makes her far more interesting than the many, many others who aren’t up for the job.

The most dramatic measures she’s taken lately involve going on a severe health kick. While she’s previously been scorned in the public eye for being both overweight and underweight, she recently has gotten into an incredibly sane health regime. The new-and-improved Hilary Duff diet includes balancing all types of foods, including carbs, as well as pilates four times a week.

“I want to inspire people to have a healthy mindset,” she told Shape Magazine last month. “Everyone needs food that gives them energy they need to be active — and they should have fun.”

“A lot of people keep me in check,” Duff says to Maxim’s Alison Prato. “It’s not exactly hard being so young and having so much — I’m thankful. But young people in Hollywood get so used to being told ‘yes’ all the time, and that’s not reality. When you get everything you want at a young age, you become bored. You’re like, ‘What’s next? What else is there?’ I think this might be the problem.”
In Duff’s case, she’s got a solid background in self-entertainment. She seems to have a solid enough head on her shoulders that she can find new and interesting ways to challenge herself. Making bigger movies, writing better songs; there are many places she can take herself that don’t include celebrity rehab or jail.

The songs on her latest album, Dignity, were a direct product of her break-up with Joel and dealing with her parents’ divorce. She decided to channel all the emotion into an artistic creation instead of drowning it all in substance abuse. This alone may prove why she is thriving right now; Duff may be an actual artist.

“When we broke up I’d already written a few songs about us, and I was like, ‘Can I use this stuff now? It’s so personal,’” Duff tells Prato. “But I ended up using everything because I wanted the album to be honest. I’m not perfect, and I don’t have a perfect family. The album lets people inside my life — not the life everybody thinks they know or that they read about, but my real life.” There’s something to be respected for the fact that she not only wrote her own songs, but they seem to be curtain-less windows into her life and her views.

“The song [“Dignity”] is about people living in LA,” Duff tells Prato, “and how easy it is to lose yourself here. Sometimes this town is so shocking. People think they can throw money around and get whatever they want. Dignity isn’t something you’re born with — it’s something you have to work on.”

Duff isn’t one to hang out with the typical Hollywood crowd. She’s usually found with her sister and her best friend. Being an outsider never had so many positive effects before. It takes a real backbone to resist the Hollywood “in-crowd,” and that’s why we can be certain that Duff is one of the stronger stars in the LA atmosphere.

courtesy: La Direct

Hilary Duff with a fan for Meet and Greet

Here are some pictures from the lucky fan who got to go to the Meet & Greet in Vancouver with Hilary Duff (you’ll see that both Haylie Duff and Mike Comrie were in Vancouver for her concert!) and also the meet & greet in Portland:

See the pictures


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