Whether you know her best as Mary, one of the infamous Sanderson Sisters in Hocus Pocus, or as the voice of Peggy Hill on King of the Hill, it's likely you've run across Kathy Najimy's comedic talents more than a few times. A character actress with many faces, she's been making her mark on Hollywood since the early '90s.
In addition to her acting, she's also an outspoken advocate for our animal friends. She's joined with PETA on multiple campaigns, including starring in a TV spot to promote kindness to dogs and posing for an ad encouraging tourists to stay away from SeaWorld. And in honor of her efforts, PETA presented her with a Compassionate Action Award yesterday at Fort Lauderdale's veg heaven, Sublime.
All the bigwigs were on hand for Najimy's honor, from PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk and Senior VP Dan Mathews to Sublime and ARFF founder Nanci Alexander. Ahead of honoring Najimy, they each took the stage to talk about PETA's campaigns and Najimy's efforts.
Then, Najimy's daughter, singer/songwriter Samia Najimy Finnerty sang a moving, symbolic tune about animals.. Also a PETA spokesperson, last year the then-16-year-old starred in a saucy campaign headlined "Vegans Go All the Way".
After some glowing intros, Najimy took the stage to accept her honor. She gave kudos to Ingrid and Dan and her daughter.
"When I first got involved with PETA a million years ago, it was like having an affair with a really bad, hot boy on the street. You knew he could be trouble but you couldn't stay away. I miss that boy but PETA has matured into this brilliant organization something none of us could ever have imagined. I have watched PETA literally changed the world," Najimy said.
She talked about her tendency towards tears when it comes to animal issues, from captive elephants to dogs at the pound to horses pulling carriages in Manhattan. She spoke about her own pups, and said, "Somebody once told me that I was wasting my time because animals don't have feelings, hearts or souls. I said if that's true then I've loved and been madly loved by stuffed animals for over 40 years."
After singing PETA's praises and crediting them for doing whatever it takes to lessen the suffering of animals (while not giving a damn about public perception), she concluded with this:
"Every good and helpful thing matters. Every little thing and every big thing. What you don't do doesn't matter that much, it doesn't cancel out the good thing you do. Everything good matters."
Amen to that Kathy.
Follow Hannah on Twitter @hannahgetshappy.
Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.