Laurie Ellen David (née Lennard; born March 22, 1958) is an American environmental activist. She produced the Academy Award-winning An Inconvenient Truth and, most recently, teamed up with Katie Couric to executive produce Fed Up, a film about the causes of obesity in the United States. She serves as a trustee on the Natural Resources Defense Council and a member of the Advisory Board of the Children's Nature Institute and is a contributing blogger to The Huffington Post.
In 1979, she graduated from Ohio University with a degree in journalism. She was married for 14 years to Larry David (co-creator of Seinfeld and creator of Curb Your Enthusiasm). They married in 1993, and Laurie David filed for divorce on July 19, 2007.
Before working full-time on environmental and political issues, David worked in the entertainment industry. She began her career in New York City as a talent coordinator for the David Letterman show. Four years later she left to start her own management company, representing comedians and comedy writers.
She also produced several comedy specials for HBO, Showtime, MTV, and Fox Television. Upon moving to Los Angeles, she became vice president of comedy development for a division of Fox Broadcasting and developed sitcoms for 20th Century Fox TV.
Laurie David has worked publicly on projects aimed at stopping climate change. She founded the Stop Global Warming Virtual March with Senator John McCain and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. Ms. magazine quoted Laurie David about the grassroots aspect of her campaign: "If everyone does one thing, they are likely to do two things, then three things. Then they are likely to influence friends and family, and that's how you build a movement."
In addition to the Virtual March, David has produced other projects to bring the issue of climate change into mainstream popular culture, including the release of her first book, Stop Global Warming: The Solution Is You!, and the comedy special, Earth to America! for TBS, which aired November 20, 2005. Aside from the Academy Award-winning documentary An Inconvenient Truth, David produced HBO's Too Hot Not to Handle (a documentary on the effects of climate change in the United States), which aired on April 22, 2006. Laurie David also appeared in Big Ideas for a Small Planet, an environmentalist documentary series on the Sundance Channel.
As a trustee of the Natural Resources Defense Council and a founding member of The Detroit Project , David has spearheaded numerous public education and action campaigns urging Congress and auto-makers to raise fuel efficiency standards and make higher mileage cars. In January 2004, the NRDC opened the David Family Environmental Action Center. Endowed by the David family, the Center promotes activism to protect the environment. It features exhibits on issues such as global warming, ocean pollution, everyday toxins, and green building solutions.
In an interview with The Guardian in November 2006, David acknowledged that owning two homes on opposite sides of the country and flying in a private jet several times per year is at odds with her message to others. In the interview she notes "Yes, I take a private plane on holiday a couple of times a year, and I feel horribly guilty about it. I probably shouldn't do it. But the truth is, I'm not perfect. This is not about perfection. I don't expect anybody else to be perfect either. That's what hurts the environmental movement – holding people to a standard they cannot meet. That just pushes people away."
In 2005, and then again in 2009, David was cited by the Chilmark Conservation Commission for paving over protected wetland areas on her estate on Martha's Vineyard.
In 2003, she was honored by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s organization, Riverkeeper. She also received the Los Angeles-based Children's Nature Institute's Leaf Award in 2003 for her commitment to the environmental education of young children.
In October 2006, David was featured in Glamour as one of its “Women of the Year”. She received the Gracie Allen Award for Individual Achievement by the American Women in Radio & Television and the NRDC's 2006 Forces for Nature award for her work against global warming.
David's book The Family Dinner was published in 2010, with recipes by Kirstin Uhrenholdt, a foreword by Harvey Karp and an afterword by Jonathan Safran Foer. The book advocated for a return to the domestic tradition of an evening meal (sometimes called supper) shared around the family table. David's book included recipes, "rules" for an effective dinner system, suggestions for stimulating conversation, a survey of ways different cultures say grace, and ways to include grandparents.
- Earth girls aren't easy
- "Article: The Real Cheryl David, And She's Jewish", highbeam.com; accessed July 27, 2015.
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- Richard Johnson, Paula Froelich, Bill Hoffmann, Corynne Steindler, and Neel Shah. "Laurie's Vineyard Violation", The New York Post, May 30, 2009
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- Tram Kim Nguyen. ""The Earth Angel"". Retrieved January 11, 2017.