04.24.1310:49 AM ET

Matrix Awards Honor Media’s Firebrands

The ceremony spotlights ‘inspiring women in the world of communications.’

New York Women in Communications held its 2013 Matrix Awards on Monday with a luncheon at the Waldorf-Astoria in midtown Manhattan emceed by Joan Rivers. Awardees ranged from Audra McDonald, a Broadway actress and singer, to Joanna Coles, editor in chief of Cosmopolitan magazine. Celebrity presenters turned out as well: Ryan Seacrest, New York mayoral hopeful Christine Quinn, and Barry Diller, the CEO of IAC (which owns Newsweek and The Daily Beast). One of Newsweek’s 125 Women of Impact was also recognized: Bonnie Hammer, the chairman of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment Group. In a speech about the trajectory of more experienced professionals, she noted the change in drive that she and a peer have experienced, gaining focus and losing the anxiety that had dominated the middle years of their careers. Now, she says, they feel as excited and passionate about the business as they had when they first started. “After the early years,” she lamented, “the joy is too often drowned out by a lot of clamor.”