Actress Sarah Jessica Parker (1965-) was born on this day in the coal-mining town of Nelsonville, Ohio, one of eight siblings.
"I remember my childhood as Dickensian," she recalled. "I remember being poor. There was no great way to hide it. We didn't have electricity sometimes."
She told Parade magazine in 2006, “It sounds crazy, but I’m grateful for all that now. It gave me a good work ethic and sympathy for the majority of people, who aren’t rich. I feel in touch with their lives because of my upbringing.”
Trained in ballet and singing, she began acting professionally when she was eight years old, then starred in Broadway's Annie five years later. In 1982, Parker was cast as "Beanpole" in the TV sitcom Square Pegs.
She credited Steve Martin for her big break in the film L.A. Story (1991). "Everything that has happened to me is because of Steve," she said about the opportunity. "Everything. I don't know how to thank him. He just stood there and let me be extremely large in that movie."
As the award-winning star of the groundbreaking HBO Sex and the City, Parker continued to explore what she called the "age of un-innocence" with her character Carrie Bradshaw.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the humble actress selected the word "grace" as a screen saver on her cell phone to remind her "to be good to people." Married in 1997 to Broadway star Matthew Broderick, she served as a member of Hollywood's Women's Political Committee and UNICEF's representative for the Performing Arts.
Parker said, "Your childhood doesn’t have to dictate the rest of your life if you’re given skills, opportunity, and self-reliance.”
Feel good about who you are and what you do.