— DIANE CLEHANE
It was SRO at Michael’s today with moguls Jack Welch and David Geffen holding court at their respective tables while the celebrity du jour, none other than George Hamilton, caused more than his fair share of double takes. We overheard one fan gush, “I loved you on Dancing With the Stars!” (So did we, but we’re too cool to say so.) Meanwhile, the rest of the crowd was so busy air kissing and table hopping between bites it’s a miracle anyone actually got to eat anything. We’re glad we did, because the new fall menu is fabulous!
I was joined today by Debbie Phillips, life coach and founder of Women On Fire, and Sophfronia Scott, author and founder of The Done For You Writing & Publishing Company. Debbie is busier than ever with her Women on Fire tea parties that have been helping women from all walks of life ignite their true passions since 2004. She’s hosting one at Lady Mendl’s Tea Salon in Gramercy Park on Friday, and there are others scheduled for Columbus, Ohio, Boston, Santa Fe and Naples this fall. Debbie is on track to reaching her important goal of “connecting 50,000 women to each other” through Women on Fire this year. You go, girl!
Sophfronia, who I first met when we worked at People together another life ago, got to know Debbie after she attended one of her tea parties. She is really on a roll. This mom of an adorable six year-old boy has been regularly cranking out books since she published her first novel All I Need to Get By in 2004. She recently published How The Fierce Handle Fear: Secrets to Succeeding in Challenging Times (Two Harbors) in which she compiles words of wisdom from high rollers, including Donald Trump and Jack Canfield. Just how does she juggle it all? “I can write for about four hours at a time; then I have to get up and do something else,” Sophfronia tells me. See, it’s just that simple.
Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:
1. The “Imber Gang”: Dr. Gerald Imber, Jerry Della Femina, Jeff Greenfield, Andy Bergman and Michael Kramer
2. Peter Brown and Grace Hightower (That’s Mrs. Robert De Niro to you.)
3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong
4. Alan Grubman, David Geffen and Bob Daley
5. The Early Show: Jonathan Tisch and Jed Bernstein; Second Seating: the perennially tan George Hamilton (“It’s toasted!”) and a table full of pals.
6. Denise Richardson and Phil Ramone
7. Two guys with plenty to celebrate: Niche Media founder and CEO Jason Binn, who was just tapped by Gilt Groupe as chief advisor to chairman Kevin Ryan, and Town & Country‘s new editor-in-chief Stephen Drucker. We’re loving Stephen’s hip new vision for the magazine. It’s not just for the horsey set anymore!
8. Jonathan Wald and Larry Kramer, whose new book C-Scape Navigating the Future of Business comes out in November.
9. Jerry Inzerillo, presiding over a table of movers and shakers.
11. Radical Media’s Bob Friedman with public relations princess Elizabeth Harrison.
12. Conde Nast colleagues Lou Cona and Chuck Townsend.
14. CNBC’s Joe Kernen and Jack Welch, who worked the room like nobody’s business on his way in and out.
15. A bearded Ben Silverman, sipping tea with an unidentified power blonde and a fellow we didn’t recognize.
81. Estee Lauder’s Alexandra Trower — Happy Birthday!
16. Politico Robert Zimmerman and Sheri Rollins
17. Lisa Linden and former Daily News scribe David Saltonstall.
18. Martin Bandier
19. The always stylish Bettina Zilkha with an equally well-heeled gal pal.
20. Literary lioness Frederica Friedman and Karen LeFrak
21. Quest‘s Chris Meigher with Nancy Ellison and Bill Rollnick.
22. Debbie Phillips, Sophfronia Scott and yours truly.
23. Rita Jammet and, we hear, the president of Mauboussin Jewelry.
24. Duncan Darrow
25. Price Waterhouse Cooper’s Peter Miscovich and Peter Slatin
26. Attorney Michael Kassan
27. Marketing maven Shelley Zalis and pals.
28. Beverly Camhe (long time, no see!) and Lidia Andich of The Clinton Foundation. Bev was nice enough to introduce me to Lidia who tells me she’s hard at work putting together the first-ever gala for the Foundation to be held October 23. Mark your calendars!
29. Fashionista Fern Mallis, fresh off her trip to India Fashion Week, and her longtime friend and colleague Janice Rosenhaus of Harris Marketing Group. Janice and Fern marshaled their considerable brainpower to create the iconic partnership between Mercedes Benz and Seventh on Sixth when Fern was the Queen of New York Fashion Week. Now, Janice tells me she is hard at work on the launch of the new Jaguar XJ 7. Don’t forget to send us an invite!
Faces in the crowd: Kyle Hotchkiss Carone, Mark Guiducci, Dave Syer and Bill Burrsat the bar.
Please send comments and corrections to DianeClehane AT mediabistro Dot com and lunch at mediabistro DOT com.