Marg Helgenberger

My 5 Minutes with the President

Emmy Award winner and Golden Globe nominee Marg Helgenberger has starred for 12 seasons on the CBS drama “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” Marg’s breakout role came in 1990 on “China Beach,” which won her an Emmy. In feature film, Marg starred in “Mr. Brooks,” “In Good Company,” “Species,” “Species II,” “Erin Brockovich,” “Fire Down Below,” “My Fellow Americans,” “Bad Boys” and “Always,” among others. 

Marg grew up acting in her school plays in North Bend, Neb., and later attended Northwestern University, where she began her acting career. 

It wasn’t until her time at Northwestern that she considered acting as a career. After graduating college she was cast on the ABC-TV daytime drama “Ryan’s Hope.” While in New York, she also did work with the TADA Youth Theater.

ROBIN BRONK: If you had five minutes in the Oval Office with President Obama, what would you discuss with him? What issue would you like him to know about?

MARG HELGENBERGER: First off, I’d congratulate him on the passage of the healthcare reform law. Perhaps it’s not perfect, but at its core, it’s helpful to those that are less fortunate. I’d like to have President Obama explain to me, in simple terms, the minute details of the Wall Street bailout, and if he feels that federal regulation will ever truly be enforced, and by what means. I’d also like to discuss public education. No one would dispute the value of a great education, yet how is the progress of the No Child Left Behind Act being evaluated?

RB: If you could ask President Obama one question, what would that be?

MH: What would be the single most important bit of advice the president could impart to young people?

RB: What piece of advice would you give President Obama as he’s campaigning for the upcoming election?

MH: Drink up. Just kidding, but not really.

RB: If you were going to send the president to one of your favorite places in the United States for one day, where would that be? Why?

MH: Big Sur, on the Northern California coast, is one of the most breathtaking sights I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing. I defy anyone to spend time absorbing the magnificence of that coastline and not feel uplifted and inspired.

RB: What piece of music would you recommend that President Obama add to his collection? Why?

MH: I create playlists from my iTunes library, burn them onto discs and hand them out as party favors. My last playlist included Muddy Waters, Jack White, Neko Case and BlakRoc, to name a few. I would love to create a playlist just for the Obamas’ enjoyment.

RB: Would you ever consider a political career?

MH: Never say never.

Robin Bronk is CEO of The Creative Coalition — the leading national, nonprofit, nonpartisan public advocacy organization of the entertainment industry. Bronk is a frequent speaker on the role of the entertainment industry in public advocacy campaigns and represents The Creative Coalition and its legislative agenda before members of Congress and the White House. She produced the feature film “Poliwood,” airing on Showtime, and edited the recently published book Art & Soul. Bronk pens this weekly column with assistance from Risa Kotek.