Marlee Matlin Wings into Red Cross

Will NBC’s “The West Wing” soon require a major wardrobe change to accommodate the expanding tummy of Marlee Matlin, who plays Joey Lucas on the hit political series? The actress, in Washington D.C., to help announce a new American Red Cross National Celebrity Cabinet, admitted, when asked about the flowered shirt bulging slightly beneath her black pants suit, that she is expecting baby No. 3. “I haven’t announced it yet,” Matlin, 36, told PEOPLE. Her due date is “in July,” she said. The Oscar winner (for Best Actress in 1986’s “Children of a Lesser God”) is one of 12 members of the Red Cross’s first-ever Celebrity Cabinet, brought on to help burnish the somewhat tattered image of the nation’s largest charity. The Red Cross raised record amounts after Sept. 11 but received heavy criticism for not immediately guaranteeing that all donations would go to victims of the attack on America. In addition to Matlin, Cabinet members include actors Roma Downey, Hector Elizondo, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Chi McBride and Jane Seymour, country artists Lonestar and Tim McGraw, R&B singer Brian McKnight, pop star Mandy Moore, TV personality Nancy O’Dell and baseball player Mike Piazza. “Anything they ask me to do, I’ll do,” says Matlin. “If they need me, I’ll go. I’m thrilled to be involved, and being a mom helps.” She says that she last gave blood in September 2000 and plans to do it again. “It’s a very important cause to me because when I had my last child I hemorrhaged and nearly didn’t make it. I’m really aware of how important it is to give blood.”

Related Articles