Detective Remington Steele with partner and wife Laura Holt-Steele
"Try this for a deep, dark secret: the great detective Remington Steele? He has a partner...a decidedly feminine partner. You won't read about her in the newspaper articles which relate his exploits; you won't see her in the pictures that line the picture wall of the Agency office. Though she has long worked side by side with the head of Remington Steele Investigations, the city of Los Angeles know her best as 'Unidentified Woman' or 'Unnamed Associate.' Yet in spite of her anonymous status in the public eye, this remarkable woman is very much the heart and soul of the Steele Agency. She is truly the 'Woman Behind the Man', and any success achieved by Remington Steele Investigations is a direct result of her determination, persistence, inquisitiveness and tenacity.
"The Remington Steele Agency is far more than one man; it's a partnership... A partnership with give and take, where ideas are shared and enhanced, dangers and responsibilities are divided, successful resolutions are celebrated, and each member of the team is respected for their own unique contributions. But what makes this partnership so extraordinary is that it extends far beyond the boundaries of mere business. Indeed, it carries over into every aspect of our personal lives.
"For those of you who may not know, the partner of which I am speaking is the former Laura Holt. In addition to being my most trusted associate and business partner, she is also my wife and the mother of my six children. Long after the flashbulbs have stopped and the interviews have ended, my partner and I continue to give and take, to share ideas, to divide responsibilities and dangers, and to celebrate the successes.
"Though some of the successes have been public, like the one we are celebrating here tonight, many others have been of a personal nature, prompting far more intimate celebration. One such personal celebration occurred for me recently when our oldest son, Brendan, wrote the winning composition for a school writing contest. The challenge was this: 'What one thing would you change to help make Los Angeles a better place?'
"To understand his answer, I need to remind you of my earlier comment about the picture wall in my office. It consists of dozens of framed black and white publicity shots of me making PR appearances at various functions in and around the city. Though my partner accompanied me on many of those occasions, she is no where to be seen in most of the photographs. So what would our nine year old son change to make Los Angeles a better place? He would have the publicity shots on the picture wall of Remington Steele Investigations contain pictures which included both of his parents. As he put it, 'Since Mum and Dad solve their cases together, working side by side as a team, it seems only fair that they receive equal recognition and respect for their acheivements. They are both Remington Steele.'
"You may ask how changing the picture wall of Remington Steele Investigations could make Los Angeles a better place. The change would not occur as a result of the pictures themselves, but as a result of the change in the attitude of the photographers taking the pictures. Can you imagine what this great city would be like if everyone were given their fair share of credit for their contributions? If all team members received recognition for their work? If the spotlight were focused not on the flashy front man, but on the equally important associates?
"It is my sincere hope that tonight will mark the beginning of a new attitude by the press. That when my children and grandchildren look at the picture wall at Remington Steele Investigations in the months and years to come, they will see photographs which highlight a partnership--a most successful and unique partnership.
"Working together, my partner and I have built a successful detective agency, a successful marriage and a successful family. Without her, there would be no Remington Steele Investigations. To stand alone before you today and accept this prestigious 'Freedom of Los Angeles' award would be a travesty of justice, but to accept it with her by my side is a privilege beyond compare.
"So, if I may, I would like to introduce you to my partner, both in business and in life--Laura Holt-Steele."
Story reported by Debra