Y&R’s Kate Linder Chats About Her Amazing Life!

Kate Linder Soap Opera Fan Blog is pleased to share the details of this exciting chat with the upbeat and interesting Kate Linder, who plays Esther on The Young and the Restless!

Soap Opera Fan Blog: Did you attend the Emmys Awards? What was that like? What do you like best about red carpet events?

Kate: Yes! It was totally amazing! It was the 60th Anniversary of the awards and was in a new theater for the first time. Also, I took my mother so that was really neat! The red carpet is totally amazing – I see people I haven’t seen in a long time. One of the people who used to do hair on the show was there – I haven’t seen her in about nine years, so I got to say ‘hello’. I ran into Kate Flannery from “The Office,” I know her, and Chandra Wilson from “Grey’s Anatomy,” I got to say ‘good luck’ – I wanted her to win, but she didn’t. Everyone is really great and you get to see everyone’s gowns and what they have on – it’s very frenetic though, and it’s also extremely hot out there! I felt so bad for the people working, the photographers, they were just burning up. The fans were screaming – it was great to see them.

Soap Opera Fan Blog: Can you tell me a little about your position on the Board of Governors and what it entails?

Kate: We make the decisions for the Academy, and the budgetary decisions. I’m actually on the Budgetary Review Committee, a different committee. The Governors have a big part of it. The Governors Ball was great too, because it was the 60th anniversary, which is diamond, so it was absolutely exquisite in there – beautiful!

Soap Opera Fan Blog: I want to congratulate you, of course, and ask what it was like receiving a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame? What was going through your mind at the ceremony? Who attended?

Kate: Oh, it was so amazing! I can’t believe to this day that it really happened – I need to go there and look at it periodically! [laughs] I always looked up to the stars as a little girl, and even up to a few weeks before I found out I was receiving this honor, my husband and I were at the Pantages and walking down the street, looking at the stars, and I thought, “Oh my gosh, I can’t even imagine what that would be like.” And then to find out I was receiving one myself! I was totally blown away! Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was one of my speakers, and presented it to me, as well as Jeanne Cooper [Katherine Chancellor], and Lee Bell [Co-creator and Writer], so that was three really important people in my life. Joanne Worley and Gary Owen also attended it, so, that was wonderful. A lot of fellow flight attendants also attended – some in uniform – there were over one thousand people in the street – so it was amazing! The wild thing was, I had to work on the show that day. So things got pretty crazy. I had scenes with Judith [Chapman] that day, but it was an amazing, amazing day – unforgettable.

Soap Opera Fan Blog: In addition to The Young and the Restless), you continue to be a flight attendant with United on the weekends. You must have loads of great stories of fans recognizing you on airplanes – is there a particularly memorable one that comes to mind that you could share with us?

Kate: Yes! I do have a lot of stories, but this is an interesting story as far as the airplane goes – I found out that I was receiving the Star while I was on the airplane! I was flying to Portland and back. We had arrived in Portland and the passengers had got off and we were waiting for new passengers to board to go back to L.A.  I thought I had better check my messages, and I heard this message from Johnny Grant, the Honorary Mayor of Hollywood, who has since passed away, that was the one sad part, that he was not there to see me get the Star, because he was such an important figure in my life.  The message offered congratulations and he said it was just announced on air that, you, Kate Linder, are receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame! Even when I say it now, I almost start crying! I was shocked, totally shocked! This other flight attendant came up and saw me crying and thought something terrible had happened, so I told her, “You’re not going to believe this, but I’m receiving a star!” In the middle of all this, the passengers started boarding and I went to the galley to call my husband (Ron Linder), my mom, and Brenda (publicist), and my manager, Sandra. Then the Captain boarded and asked what was going on, so we told him, and later in the flight he announced it. The whole airplane erupted and passengers were even coming up to the front (to congratulate me) it was unbelievable!

Soap Opera Fan Blog: You’ve been involved with the USO and performing for troops overseas. What was it like to visit these very different and war-weary countries (Afghanistan/Pakistan)? What feelings did you experience when taking part in this?

Kate: Yes! It’s totally amazing! I also went to Korea, and most recently, Guantanamo Bay. It was a very emotional experience, being there. It doesn’t matter whether you’re for the war or against the war, you know, I’m not really a ‘war’ person, I’m just there for the men and women that are ending up there, and their families. That’s why it’s really important to do that – to let them know that there are people that care about them.

Soap Opera Fan Blog: I know that you also drove in the Toyota Grand Prix celebrity race. As a NASCAR fan, and a woman with a ‘lead foot’, I have to ask – what was it like?

Kate: [She describes how her publicist told her they wanted her to do this.] I said  “How would I know how to do that?” My publicist explained that they would put me through school. So I went to race car driving school and learned how to do that, and that was really something. The race was something I will never forget. My car was number 7 and was red. I could hear the chanting as I went around; “Go Kate!”  My goal in that race was just to survive!  I didn’t think about winning, I mean it would have been nice, but I just wanted to survive the race, and I did that!  I remember coming across Bruce Jenner, who had driven his car into the wall, and I came up behind him and thought, “Oh my God, there’s Bruce, I better stop so he can, you know, back up and go forward,” and I thought, “Wait a minute, this is a race!” So I went around him and kept going and beat him!

Soap Opera Fan Blog: You are involved with several charities – the ALS Association, AIDS fundraising, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation. What would you like fans to know about your work with these organizations?

Kate: I’m the spokesperson for the ALS Foundation, and ALS is really a horrific disease! My brother-in-law has it, so that’s how I got involved – I had known other people who had had it as well, such as Michael Zaslow from Guiding Light. With ALS, you don’t survive. “We need to do something about it – you’re trapped in your body and you can’t do anything about it, and your mind is perfectly fine. My brother-in-law, Scott, is laying in bed right now and his mind is perfectly fine, but he can’t communicate except by blinking his eyes! I’m not giving up! There is a cure for ALS – I know that – it’s just that they haven’t found it yet! I will keep doing what I have to do! I’m very active with Make-a-Wish too. They use a lot of volunteers, so the money actually gets to the people who need it. I was able to grant a wish too – there was a young girl who wanted to visit The Young and the Restless, so I was able to grant that – we spent the day, and we all had lunch. I don’t know who got more out of that, her or myself!  I also work for cancer and heart and stroke, and whatever I can do to help – I feel that it’s extremely important to give back. If one person is going to be helped because of something I do, then that makes it all worth it!

Soap Opera Fan Blog: How does your husband handle your busy schedule?

Kate: He’s really good about it. He actually goes on a lot of things with me. He’s extremely supportive! He’s really fabulous about it – I don’t know if I could actually do it without him! Way back when, when we met, I told him, if you want someone to stay home and cook and clean, you’re with the wrong person. I’m sure there are times when he wishes I were at home doing that, but he’s been forewarned – he can’t really say anything because he agreed to that! He’s become a really good cook! [laughs]

Soap Opera Fan Blog: As Esther, you work regularly with Jeanne Cooper [Katherine]. How did you feel about her Daytime Emmy win this year?

Kate: Oh, it was so overdue! When I heard her name, I just jumped up, I couldn’t even wait, I just gave her a hug – I was just so thrilled for her! She just really deserved it, and has for many years! That was terrific that she won.

For Kate’s chat about Esther visit! Also, you can see terrific footage of Kate receiving her Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame!

-Candace Young

Photo Courtesy: Soap Opera Fan Blog

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Fun fact! Candace Young wrote this story just for you on October 1st, 2008 |

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