Who: Jennifer Ganer, Board Member, Save the Children
Day Job: Actress.
Backstory: As a first-grader in West Virginia, Jennifer Garner was friends with a set of twins who came from a poor family. "When I went to second grade, they stayed in first grade, and when I went to fourth grade, they disappeared," says the 42-year-old. "I just kept thinking, What happened to those kids?"
Driving Force: Rural poverty is an issue that doesn't get much play on the gala circuit, but that's what makes her devotion to the issue so remarkable. "Once you become a mom, you realize that everyone loves their children the same amount," says Garner, who is featured in the forthcoming PBS documentary series A Path Appears (opens in new tab). "So if these moms in Arkansas or Mississippi love their kids as much as I love my kids, how is it fair that they don't have the help they need to make their kids' lives as good as they can be?"
Success Story: With Save the Children, Garner has helped bring books, toys, and early-childhood development training to families across the country. On a trip to California's Central Valley—one of the poorest regions in the U.S.—Garner visited a nonverbal 11-month-old who was given a rubber ball. The boy, who'd never seen a ball before, began flapping his arms and babbling at his mother, who, with gentle encouragement, started talking with her baby for the first time. "It was like a light flicked on," Garner recalls. "As brick-by-brick as this work is, it can change a kid's life."
savethechildren.org/jen (opens in new tab)
Related: 19 Other Women Who Are Changing the World (opens in new tab)
Photo via Peter Hapak
The Best Beauty Products in the World: Marie Claire's Prix D'Excellence Awards 2023
The elite in skincare, cosmetics, and haircare, according to our global beauty editors.
By Deena Campbell
Greasy, Weighed-Down Hair? Try Conditioning Before You Shampoo
Everything you know about washing your hair, flipped (literally).
By Gabrielle Ulubay
Meghan Markle's Go-To Jean Jacket Is On Sale at Madewell
Madewell's coveted biannual sale means 25% off everything—and we mean *everything*.
By Brooke Knappenberger
Half of the Shondaland dream team, the woman whose work brings 'Bridgerton' to life, is one of the most influential producers in Hollywood. And she’s ready for everyone to know it.
By Jessica M. Goldstein
Payal Kadakia Is Finally Sharing Her Secret Sauce to Success
In her new book, LifePass, the ClassPass founder gives you the tools to write your own success story.
By Neha Prakash
The Power Issue
Our November issue is all about power—having it, embracing it, and dressing for it.
By Marie Claire Editors
J. Smith-Cameron Is in Control
She’s Logan Roy’s right hand. She’s Roman’s ‘mommy girlfriend.’ And she’s a fan favorite. Here, the Succession star takes us behind the scenes of Gerri’s boardroom power plays.
By Jessica M. Goldstein
More Than A Pretty Face: Anna Schuleit
German-born artist Anna Schuleit went from anonymous to Einstein virtually overnight, thanks to a call from the MacArthur Foundation announcing that she'd won a 2006 "Genius" grant for $500,000.
By Katherine Turman
What Makes an Olympic Moment?
In the past it meant overcoming struggle...and winning. But why must athletes suffer to be inspiring?
By Megan DiTrolio
'The Other Black Girl' Gets Real About Racism in the Workplace
"It really hits home how many spaces don’t allow Black women to really show up as their authentic selves."
By Rachel Epstein
Melissa Moore's 'Life After Happy Face' Podcast Looks at Killers Through New Eyes
The true crime expert and daughter of the Happy Face Killer opens up to Marie Claire about destigmatizing the label of 'criminal's kid.'
By Maria Ricapito