Oscar winner, Tahoe resident Helen Mirren casts 1st American vote | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Oscar winner, Tahoe resident Helen Mirren casts 1st American vote

Kurt Hildebrand
Record Courier
Academy Award winner and Lake Tahoe resident, Helen Mirren, votes Thursday in Minden, Nev.
Kurt Hildebrand / Record Courier

Dame Helen Mirren drove herself to Minden on Thursday morning to cast the ballot she received in the mail.

A Douglas County resident for five years and an American citizen for three, this was the Academy Award winner’s first time voting in an American election.

“It’s always important to vote but at this particular moment in time it’s particularly important to vote,” she said. “When I was in my 20s, I wouldn’t go and vote, because I was busy doing other things.”

Born and raised in England, Mirren has voted in elections in her home country, but never in the United States.

“Of course you’re never too busy not to vote,” she said. “But it’s only as you get older that you come to realize how incredibly influential your vote can be. How it can change the nature of the world you live in on every level, whether that’s ecological, educational or the arts, or in any way you like to think of your life. Voting can change that.”

Mirren, who won her Oscar for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II, said she felt that it’s critical for young people to participate in the elections. Mirren said she was there supporting Patricia Ackerman for Congress.

“I want those 18-30 year olds to come out and vote,” she said. “That’s the generation we need to get out and vote, but everyone needs to vote.”

Mirren said she loved living at Lake Tahoe.

“We’re very happy newcomers,” she said. “I think it’s an amazing state and a great county to be a part of.”

While Douglas County residents have been turning in the ballots they received in the mail at a steady pace, voting is expected to ramp up when machines become available for in-person voting on Saturday.

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