Washington Life Magazine

Washington Life Magazine

100 MOST INVITED

A SPOTTER'S GUIDE TO THE WASHINGTON SOCIAL SCENE

Unlike other major cities, Washington's social scene is a revolving door. Political appointees, elected offi cials and diplomats all come and go. Only the Cave Dwellers and Permanent Establishment Types remain - which can be good (reliable, well heeled and polite guests) or not so good (same old faces, no new blood). Commenting on this phenomenon has become an extreme sport: Who's In (Tony Snow, David Gregory) and Who's Out (Alan Greenspan, Norman Mineta, Maureen Dowd).

Who's Rich (Catherine Reynolds, Joe Robert) and Who's Broke (anyone trying to keep up on a government salary). Who's Departed (Bill and Deeda Blair, Chris Buckley, The Bush Twins) and Who's Arrived (John and Irene Danilovitch, Prince Turki Al-Faisal). The list is fluid. One day you're a Cabinet honcho, surrounded by Secret Service hulks, with limo waiting and invites stacking up like an IHOP special. Then poof you're not even on the list for Adams Morgan restaurant openings. This year, as George W. Bush's second term limps toward lame duck land, we sense a slight shift in the city's mood. Hot new dining spots, upscale boutiques and the emergence of several new glamourpusses in Chanel jackets, Jimmy Choo stilettoes and tight stove-pipe jeans means Washington is fi nally beginning to shed its fusty image. Some may say it's getting a little more Euro, thanks to several chic young ambassadorial wives whose walk-in closets are stuffed with Versace and whose presence at any fete signifi es hotitude. Cheers to them and others new to the list this year, including a few bright lights and PYTs (Pretty Young Things) who do help lighten up a party.

So, raise a Baccarat flute of Veuve Clicquot to the ever spinning, dizzying turnstile and welcome Washington Life's second annual roster of the 100 Most Invited, here in alphabetical order (after the Bushes and Cheneys) in case you think we're actually daring to rank them. If you get a dozen said notables at your party, you're a star. Eight - you're trajectory is set. Only two? Try again, dearie. None? Time to leave town or hole up at the club.

 

1 GEORGE and LAURA BUSH PRESIDENT & FIRST LADY Hardly the hosts of White House Gone Wild, but trying, at least, to loosen up and invite more people over now that the Sun is beginning to set on their second term. Still, they're generally in bed by 10 p.m. Slipping off to Baghdad would be less of a surprise than spotting them at Cafe Milano.

2 RICHARD and LYNNE CHENEY VICE PRESIDENT & AUTHOR They'd both rather be picnicking at their Eastern Shore hideaway - although he is said to have given up bird hunting. Major buzz if they decide to fl y the coop and the Secret Service stakes out your house.

3 GEORGE and SUSAN ALLEN SENATOR & WIFE The former Virginia governor and son of a legendary Redskins coach wears cowboy boots and is all over the news of late - could it be his attempt to win the 2008 Presidential Superbowl of Politics, or is that just a bunch of "macaca?" She's lovely, bright and known to loosen him up.

4 SALEM and RIMA AL-SABAH KUWAITI AMBASSADOR & FORMER JOURNALIST Easily the capital's top diplomatic hosts, their fetes are power events featuring political big wigs, Hollywood stars and masses of exotic fl owers – they even hosted Laura Bush at a charity dinner where Condi tickled the ivories.

 

5 PRINCE TURKI AL-FAISAL Al-SAUD and PRINCESS NOUF BINT FAHD SAUDI ARABIAN AMBASSADOR & WIFE The late King Faisal's soft spoken son is traveling the country trying to educate Americans about his exotic, often misunderstood homeland and plans to be much more visible here than Prince Bandar, his ambassadorial predecessor and brotherin- law. Princess Nouf is gentle, warm and occasionally appears unveiled in mixed company. She may be his secret weapon.

6 BOB BARNETT and RITA BRAVER LITERARY LAWYER & TELEVISION CORRESPONDENT He is the uber-agent (Bill, Hillary, et al) you slip your memoir to for the big bucks advance. She's a high-powered but low key CBS stalwart with multiple Emmys. Two for the price of one.

7 STUART and WILMA BERNSTEIN BUSINESSMAN & ARTS BOOSTER Back from their ambassadorial stint in Denmark, they now have time to devote to GOP fundraising, the Opera and other causes.

8 JAMES and MARJORIE BILLINGTON LIBRARIAN OF CONGRESS & HIS BIGGEST BOOSTER The erudite Russian scholar raises millions from major donors for pet projects like putting Library classics on the Internet. With Marjorie on his arm, they charm.

9 BEN BRADLEE and SALLY QUINN EDITOR EMERITUS OF THE WASHINGTON POST & WRITER The popular duo is just as good looking and fun as ever and if you get seated next to either one at dinner, expect lively repartee. When they entertain at one of their three major homes, it's usually lowkey with loyal, longtime friends.

10 DAVID and KATHERINE BRADLEY PUBLISHER & PHILANTHROPIST With major bucks (enough to move the Boston-based Atlantic Monthly to Washington), this handsome, low key couple can be counted upon to raise the buzz level. She's stunning; he's a bit reclusive and likes to avoid idle chatter.

11 STEPHEN and JOANNA BREYER SUPREME COURT JUSTICE & CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST Here comes the judge! And this one is witty, erudite and likes to dine out, especially at top-notch art museum openings. His wife, the daughter of a British peer, is equally sophisticated but often prefers the comforts of home.

12 CALVIN and JANE CAFRITZ PHILANTHROPISTS She's blonde and tall, he is dark and somewhat shorter - although not when he's standing on the checkbook of a family foundation that supports numerous local causes. A couple to watch.

13 WILLIAM and BUFFY CAFRITZ ENTREPRENEUR & ARTS PATRON With a nationwide base of friends spanning the political spectrum, they have major staying power. Just take a look at the fi ve-star guest lists for their quadrennial Inaugural parties.

14 STEVE and JEAN CASE ENTREPRENEUR & ACTIVIST The AOL co-founder's bank account has shown no signs at slowing down with his fi nger in a number of businesses. She's giving it back through the Case Foundation.

15 GIOVANNI and LEILA CASTELLANETA ITALIAN AMBASSADOR & WIFE The newest major addition to the Embassy Row set, the ambassador and his Iranian-born wife feature high-end Italian art and music along with the prosecco and pasta at Villa Firenze, one of the city's most beautiful estates.

16 KEVIN CHAFFEE JOURNALIST Witty, loyal and a keeper of secrets, this Washington Times scribe beats the competition hands down. Would be invited even without the job thanks to his social graces.

17 MICHAEL and MERYL CHERTOFF HOMELAND SECURITY CHIEF & WIFE He's pretty outgoing and good company even when under fi re, and she's super smart with spiky hair and daring dresses. Are he and Wolf Blitzer the only guys in town with facial hair? Good company even if your nanny doesn't have a green card.

18 WILLIAM JEFFERSON CLINTON and HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON FORMER PRESIDENT & SENATOR Still major Washington rock stars; if either show up, the fl ash bulbs are blinding. She can be prickly, but he remains a big, lovable lug who loves a crowd and knows how to work it.

19 ANDREW and LESLIE COCKBURN JOURNALISTS This author/Mideast expert and his wife, a 60 Minutes producer and San Francisco shipping heiress, have risen steadily in the social ranks. Always reliable for clued-in chatter.

20 WILLIAM COHEN and JANET LANGHART COHEN LAWYER & COMMUNICATIONS CONSULTANT The former Maine Republican senator and Clinton-era secretary of defense is now in private practice and writing a novel or two. His wife, a former model and television personality, is a supreme Washington babe.

21 ESTHER COOPERSMITH PHILANTHROPIST This diehard Democrat fundraiser is a social plus no matter who is in power. Plugged in all over the globe, the lights are always on in her Kalorama mega-manse, especially when high ranking foreign dignitaries are on display.

22 LEO and GREGA DALY ARCHITECT & CONNOISSEUR International globe trotters with inimitable elan, they host friends in the perfect setting of their Embassy Row home. She is arguably the city's best-dressed woman.

23 JOHN and IRENE DANILOVICH GLOBAL AID CZAR & HOTEL HEIRESS The male half of Washington's new "It Couple" is a former shipping executive and ambassador to Brazil and Costa Rica who now dispenses billions for global development as head of the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Irene (pronounced Ireen-ay), the daughter of Lord Forte, the Brit hotel mogul, is sharp as a fondue fork, sparkling, warm-hearted and chronically late. We forgive her.

24 JACK DAVIES PHILANTHROPIST Co-owner of the Wizards and Caps, this former executive at AOL is now giving back millions through his work with Venture Philanthropy Partners. Always energizes a party with his easy humor.

25 DEBORAH GORE DEAN and RICHARD "SPIDER" PAWLIK VERY SOCIAL ANTIQUAIRES Yes, there are second acts in Washington and she's a player - this time with more success in interior design than Housing and Urban Development. He is a former psychologist with a keen eye for pesky details.

26 JOHN and DEBBIE DINGELL CONGRESSMAN & LOBBYIST The dean of the House (elected in 1955) is a tough Democratic lawmaker who commands respect on both sides of the aisle. She's a pretty blonde lobbyist for General Motors who is plugged into every organization in town.

27 ROBERT DUVALL and LUCIANA PEDRAZA ACTOR & FILMMAKER The Oscar-winning jeans-andboots actor and his Argentine wife live in the Virginia hunt country but can be lured into town at any event where tango dancing is featured. She just became a U.S. citizen.

28 MARK EIN ENTREPRENEUR This bachelor tech entrepreneur's ability to know Durer from Duchamp has landed him on the National Gallery's board and many a top guest list of late.

29 DONALD and TAYLOR ENSENAT CHIEF OF PROTOCOL & POLO FAN The Bush Administration's chief of protocol is a wealthy New Orleans businessman, former ambassador to the Sultanate of Brunei and classmate of President Bush's at Yale. You're sure to bump into this diplomatic duo if you attend a lot of embassy national day parties.

30 HUDA and SAMIA FAROUKI ENTREPRENEUR & BUSINESSWOMAN These veteran players entertain lavishly with Mideastern fl air. Big-time connections in Iraq add an element of mysterious cachet.

31 ADRIAN and MICHELLE FENTY CITY COUNCILMAN & LAWYER The D.C. council member and his equally young and attractive wife are meeting and greeting nonstop as his mayoral campaign goes into overdrive. Only time will tell if substance wins over style.

32 SYDNEY MCNIFF FERGUSON ENGERY SPECIALIST AND GAL ABOUT TOWN Under "NiNi's" blonde Town & Country mane is a brain. This equestrienne clothes horse and eligible bachelorette may soon fi nd the right stallion.

33 NANCY "BITSEY" FOLGER CIVIC LEADER AND PHILANTHROPIST A much-beloved mover and shaker on the philanthropic scene, La Bitsey focuses her considerable energy on education, arts and social welfare causes.

34 HAROLD E FORD CONGRESSMAN The African- American Democrat with movie star looks adds star power to any scene, public or private. The sky's the limit if he wins the November U.S. Senate race in Tennessee. If so, move over Barack Obama!

35 BILL and KARYN FRIST SENATE MAJORITY LEADER & WIFE If the surgeon/senator has to duck out of a party to make a vote he can count on Karyn to pinch hit. And if someone chokes on the cornish hen, the doc's got the Heimlich maneuver down pat.

36 INA GINSBURG FILM FAN AND HOSTESS This Viennese-born former Andy Warhol pop culture diva likes to vamp in her red leather bike cap. Forever chic, she always knows the score.

37 DAN and RHODA GLICKMAN HOLLYWOOD LOBBYIST & CONSULTANT The Motion Picture Association of America chief is Hollywood's top lobbyist and the guy who sends President Bush all the new releases. You know you've made it if invitations to their select screenings turn up in the mail.

38 DAVID GREGORY and BETH WILKINSON NBC WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT & LAWYER Easy to spot in a crowd, this tall, tireless journo isn't afraid to tussle. A refreshing show-off among wimps, he famously irritated President Bush by asking Jacques Chirac a question in French. His wife, now a general counsel at Fannie Mae, once helped the U.S. Army prosecute Manuel Noriega.

39 CARLOS and EDI GUTIERREZ SECRETARY OF COMMERCE & WIFE This suave Cuban refugee and former Kellogg CEO is a fantastic dancer with a refreshingly down to earth wife. Mambo time! Cuba libres!

40 LLOYD and ANN HAND LAWYER & JEWELRY DESIGNER He is a power lawyer and LBJ-era protocol chief with heaps of Texas charm. She designs jewelry for an A-List clientele. Friendly and outgoing, they're the capital's perennial prom king and queen.

41 MAE HANEY and ANDRE GRENNAN / MICHELLE HANEY and VICTOR MADDUX PARTY GOING DEVELOPERS This welleducated sister act works for their father's development fi rm and also fi nds time to join the jet set in Cannes where they cohosted a party for this year's fi lm festival.

42 SIDNEY and JANE HARMAN ENTREPRENEUR & CONGRESSWOMAN This self-made hi-fi zillionaire lavishes lolly on favorite causes, including a new building for Washington's Shakespeare Theatre. She's a brusque, hardcharging legislator. Social two-fer.

43 CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS and CAROL BLUE JOURNALIST & SCREENPLAY WRITER The Brit bad boy smokes and drinks, drinks and smokes, and always wins every verbal dinner debate even whileslipping under the table. Expect to be highly entertained by his witty wife as well.

44 JAMES HOAGLAND and JANE STANTON HITCHCOCK JOURNALIST & NOVELIST After Ben Bradlee, he's The Washington Post's most desirable gray eminence emeritus and she's a hoot - in print and off-the-record. Great fi rsthand tattle about the rich and famous.

45 STUART and GWEN HOLLIDAY LOBBYIST & WIFE This former Ambassador and Bush aide now directs the international practice at Quinn Gillespie. He and his dynamic wife took the helm at the Meridian International Center after Walter and Didi Cutler passed the baton.

46 CLAY and ANNE JOHNSON WHITE HOUSE AIDE & STATE DEPARTMENT ARTS DIRECTOR Dubbya's roommate at Andover is one of the President's most trusted aides. His wife is a golfi ng buddy. Need we say more?

47 ROBERT JOHNSON ENTREPRENEUR Now a billionaire after the sale of his Black Entertainment Television network to Viacom, he is a savvy businessman, owner of the Charlotte Bobcats and player on the national scene.

48 VERNON and ANN JORDAN LAWYER & BOARD MEMBER He is a Clinton buddy and incorrigible fl irt. She's a lady and a good sport. Both have major clout in social, political and business circles. Is there any other Washington couple who sit on so many corporate boards?

49 EDWARD "TED" KENNEDY and VICTORIA REGGIE KENNEDY SENATOR & LAWYER The Kennedy family patriarch and 43-year U.S. Senate veteran is still known to party. A couple who seem to enjoy each other's company, they turn out for the right cause. Always a great photo-op.

50 JOHN KERRY and TERESA HEINZ SENATOR & PHILANTHROPIST She's straight talking and unpredictable who nonetheless does a stellar job dispensing grants from the multi-million dollar Heinz Foundation. Oh, yes, he ran for President.

 

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