Gittings Photography - HF55461

Glam Humanitarian Joanne King Herring Feted in Portrait Series

Joanne King Herring has been included in CityBook’s third annual “Leaders & Legends” portrait series, presented by Envoy Mortgage, in collaboration with Gittings Photography, which created a dozen richly beautiful portraits for this year’s collection.

About 10 years ago, Joanne King Herring — the famously diamond-bedecked diplomat, glam society hostess and persistent international activist portrayed by Julia Roberts in Charlie Wilson’s War — crowned her life’s work, founding a nonprofit providing infrastructure to remote Afghan villages. The organization, newly known as Help Them Where They Are, brings together nonprofits in various fields of expertise (clean water, medical care, education, job training) to efficiently affect sustainable results, in Afghanistan and beyond. “Can we feed the whole world? No. The world has to learn to feed itself,” says Herring, 91. “But it’s possible, with a little help. And by using their own traditions. They’re not dependent on us, they’re dependent on themselves.” Herring recently met with Ivanka Trump about the initiative, and with Texas First Lady Abbott about attacking human trafficking in Houston.

The subjects were all photographed at Gittings’ Greenway Plaza-area studio, where strict social-distancing measures were in place. The portrait sittings were initially scheduled to take place in March, just as the city was shutting down due to Covid. The decision was made to reschedule the annual project for the fall.   Leaders & Legends was conceived in 2018 by Editor-in-Chief Jeff Gremillion and Executive Publisher Lisa Holthouse. Previous honorees have included Lynn Wyatt, Nobel Prize-winning cancer researcher Jim Allison, billionaire hotelier and Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta, Grammy-winning gospel singer Yolanda Adams, and wounded Navy Seal and congressman Dan Crenshaw, who’s currently up for reelection.

To read about the rest of the 2020 Leaders & Legends, click here.