Aida Takla-O’Reilly, Two-Time HFPA President, Dies at 90
Aida Takla-O’Reilly, a two-time president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and the organization’s longest-serving member, died Sunday in Los Angeles. She was 90.
Takla-O’Reilly joined the group behind the Golden Globe Awards in 1956 and served as its president in 1994-96 and 2011-13. Born in Egypt, she covered the entertainment industry for publications in her home country.
“She was a great listener, never judged and always fought for the underdog. She was fearless and inspired others to be fearless — and to become leaders. She had a fierce and deep loyalty to her friends and the people she loved,” HFPA president Helen Hoehne, who was sponsored by Takla-O’Reilly when she applied to join the organization, said in a statement.
“I owe Aida a great debt of gratitude for all her support and love over the years — and the HFPA owes much to her tough-as-nails defense of the association, our work and our members. To the very end, she was dispensing advice and sharing her wisdom for the future of the HFPA.”
Takla-O’Reilly moved to the U.S. as a student, and she earned her master’s degree from UCLA. In 1976, she was selected to chair the Pan-African Studies department at California State University, Los Angeles, where she taught classes and developed courses in literature, journalism and film studies. She also had a Ph.D.
She was honored with the Women of Vision in Film Award in 2001.
Survivors include her daughter, Dominique, and her grandchildren, Mikaela, Taylor, Arianna, Zachary and Naomi.