Hundreds gathered at the 31st Annual Gloria Awards: A Salute to Women of Vision at Capitale on Wednesday, May 8th to celebrate the Ms. Foundation for Women’s 45th anniversary of fighting for gender equity. The evening honored award-winning filmmaker and writer dream hampton and Marvel’s Vice President of Content & Character Development Sana Amanat.
In addition to Ms. hampton and Ms. Amanat, the Ms. Foundation honored two leaders from grantee-partner organizations who have impacted the women’s movement in unparalleled ways. Angeline Echeverría of El Pueblo, Inc. in North Carolina and Deon Haywood of Women With A Vision in Louisiana were recognized for their work igniting changes in their communities to ensure equity and opportunity for all women. Additionally, youth activists Charlotte Iradukunda, Jessica Hernandez, and Layla Bagwell of the Idaho Coalition Against Sexual & Domestic Violence received the Peggy C. Charren Free to Be You and Me Award for their work as organizers and an open letter they penned to support Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.
The Gloria Awards, named for Gloria Steinem, one of the organization’s founding mothers, is a yearly celebration to benefit Ms. Foundation grantee partners around the country and to recognize leaders who have made an indelible impact on the movement for gender equity at the local, state, and national level. Ms. hampton received the Woman of Vision Award, honoring feminist leaders who create positive change, and Ms. Amanat received the Marie C. Wilson Award, named after the former CEO and President of the Foundation to recognize young, trailblazing feminists.
Gloria Steinem, Ms. Foundation Founding Mother, opened the evening by encouraging guests to get to know one another, work together, and continue to grow the movement. Steinem stated, “past years have resulted in plays, movies, political plots, and love affairs, so unleash your imagination!”
Teresa C. Younger, President and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women, in sharing the theme of the evening, said “tonight, as we celebrate 45 years of the Ms. Foundation, we celebrate the multiple generations of women from around the country seeking the same thing — equity.” Younger also announced the creation of The Ms. Action Fund, a 501(c)4 established to further the work of The Ms. Foundation for Women and its grassroots partners. “Built off of the legacy of Marie C. Wilson and the White House Project, the Ms. Foundation is continuing our investment in women by identifying what the field needs and integrating policy strategies that bring about lasting change,” said Younger.
dream hampton used her speech to reflect on the current moment, including Georgia’s HB 481, which would ban abortion for all women after six weeks, “We were focusing on voter rights and this old fight we are having to have again. The election was stolen, Brian Kemp stole that election. And today he stole the right of women to choose for themselves.”
Sana Amanat said, “The thing about comics and superheroes that makes me so excited is that my diversity is actually a superpower. It’s truly allowed me to embrace something that society told me was not good and bad, particularly as a young Muslim woman… I’m going to accept this award with humility and gratitude, and I take it as a challenge to continue to defy, to always love, and to never lose sight of what matters — to help people, and to build up women around the world as all of you continue to do.”
Since 1973, the Ms. Foundation has invested over $65 million to build grassroots movements fighting for gender equity, particularly women of color around the country. This past year, the Ms. Foundation launched a new strategic plan that is committed to investing in and strengthening the capacity of women-of-color-led movements and grassroots organizations that intentionally and inclusively centers women and girls of color. The Ms. Foundation is determined to center the voices of women of color on the frontlines and bolster them through grantmaking, capacity building, policy and advocacy, leadership development, strategic communications, and political organizing.
Previous Gloria Awards honorees include former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Academy Award-nominated director Ava DuVernay, former Editor-In-Chief of Teen Vogue Elaine Welteroth, the co-chairs of the Women’s March on Washington, fashion icon Diane von Furstenberg, Sheila Nevins of HBO Documentary Films, Suzanne Lerner of Michael Stars, and Jennifer and Peter Buffett on behalf of the NoVo Foundation.
For more information about the Ms. Foundation, please visit forwomen.org.
For 45 years, the Ms. Foundation for Women has worked to build women’s collective power in the U.S. to advance equity and justice for all. The Ms. Foundation invests in and strengthens the capacity of women-led movements to advance meaningful social, cultural, and economic change in the lives of women. With equity and inclusion as the cornerstones of true democracy, the Ms. Foundation works to create a world in which the worth and dignity of every person are valued, and power and possibility are not limited by gender, race, class, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or age.