Oprah magazine in SA turns 10
Cape Town – "Thanks to Oprah I'm getting the chance in life to see how far I can stretch myself."
So said Marwiya James, now studying toward a BCom degree in financial accounting at the University of Cape Town (UCT).
She's one of the pupils from the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls (OWLAG) who attended the special 10th anniversary luncheon on Wednesday of O, The Oprah Magazine South Africa at the Table Bay Hotel.
The magazine is the only custom-published version of the magazine while the rest of the world receives the American edition.
The magazine celebrated 10 years in South Africa with 50 lucky readers, a sprinkling of celebrities as well as current pupils from Winfrey's school who've never flown before and who were specially jetted in for the occasion.
Guests went home with heavy goodie bags and everyone got free jewellery, but there were no cars. Although rumoured to make an appearance, Winfrey was also absent.
"Oprah is a generous, kind but also a strict person. You can see that she lives for other people when you look at the things she does," James told Channel24. "Outside of the Oprah Winfrey that people see on TV, she has become a mother to us. She's an amazing woman and I'm very grateful for everything she's done for me."
"Oprah reinvented the magazine industry at a time when people started to look away from magazines," said Jane Raphaely, editor-in-chief of O, The Oprah Magazine SA and chairperson of Associated Magazines.
"It's been an amazing journey for me," said Samantha Page, editor of O, The Oprah Magazine SA.
"I've been with the magazine since the start and it has been such an amazing journey. It was Jane Raphaely who twisted Oprah's arm and told her that O, The Oprah Magazine and South Africa with its own version would be a perfect fit, and indeed it was."
"It's because of Oprah's dream that her school for girls now exist and it's because of her dream that the magazine exists, Anne van Zyl, head master at OWLAG told Channel24. "
She's a remarkable, far-sighted, inspirational woman and an example to all of us. That O, The Oprah Magazine is 10 years old is a terrific achievement and from how readers everywhere have embraced it, it's clearly going from strength to strength."