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Collaborating with Safe Horizon to raise awareness and motivating women to pursue their dreams
Helping to prevent domestic violence
After strutting down the runway in front of a barrage of Paparazzi and fans, Meester spoke, addressing teenagers. She spoke to the public about what teenagers can do to prevent domestic violence in their own lives. She told People Magazine, "I think it's an issue that everyone can take part in because it applies to everyone. You can be a victim or someone you love can be a victim. The more people are aware, the more it can be prevented."
Safe Horizon, the organization who sponsored the event, believes that every person impacted by violence and abuse deserves to have a "safe horizon;" a day when they could look forward to a better and safer tomorrow. Today, Safe Horizon is the largest organization helping victims of crime and abuse in the United States.
It's wonderful to see celebrities like Leighton Meester out there trying to make a difference in the world. Celebrities have such a powerful influence on people in this world, especially young teenagers. If they could use that power for good, many lives could be impacted for the better as a result. The more awareness we bring to problems such as domestic abuse, the better chance we have of stopping it.
More on Meester
Meester was born in Fort Worth, Texas, to Constance (n?e Haas) and Douglas Meester, and lived most of her life in New York City and Los Angeles. Meester's last name is the Dutch word for "master" or "teacher". At the time of her birth, her mother was serving time in a federal prison for her involvement in a drug ring that smuggled marijuana from Jamaica to the USA. She was able to give birth to Leighton in a hospital and nurse her for three months in a halfway house, before returning to prison to complete her sentence, after which Leighton's grandmother cared for her. She has a brother, Alexander, who is 8 years younger. Meester has maintained that her parents gave her a normal upbringing and, despite their criminal past, are good people with experience that has only made Meester more open-minded and non-judgmental, "It made me realize that you can't judge anyone ' especially your parents ' for what they've done in their past, because people change." Meester has joked, "Look, I could've turned out a lot worse." She has cited her mother as her style icon.
Meester grew up in Marco Island, Florida, where she participated in productions at a local playhouse. When she was 11 years old, Meester and her mother moved to New York City. Meester attended the Professional Children's School and also began working as a model with Wilhelmina, booking a Ralph Lauren campaign shot by Bruce Weber and working with then photographer (now film maker) Sofia Coppola as well as many commercials including Tamagotchi toys and Clearasil. She has also posed for Limited Too campaigns alongside fellow future actress, Amanda Seyfried, in which Seyfried recalls, "Leighton was very confident." Meester made her television acting debut as a murder victim's friend on an episode of Law & Order. At 14, Meester moved to Los Angeles, California, wanting more stable work, and attended Hollywood High School and Beverly Hills High School. She then transferred to a small private school and graduated a year early.
Amanda Kreel, Fashion Columnist: Amanda is a graduate of East Stroudsburg University where she majored in English Journalism and minored in Digital Photography. She enjoys writing no matter what the topic, and does her best work at night. She currrently resides in Delray Beach, FL. (more...)