GLAAD, the nation’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) media advocacy organization, honored Jennifer Lopez, Laverne Cox, Norman Lear, and the best in film and television at the 25th Annual GLAAD Media Awards at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles during the weekend.
Academy Award-winner Lupita Nyong'o, Ellen Page, Rita Moreno, Naomi Campbell, Johnny Galecki, and Chaz Bono were among the special guests. The 25th Annual GLAAD Media Awards are presented nationally by Ketel One Vodka, Wells Fargo, and Hilton Worldwide. The Los Angeles event is presented locally by Delta Air Lines and Bud Light.
The GLAAD Media Awards recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives. The GLAAD Media Awards also fund GLAAD’s work to amplify stories of LGBT people and issues that build support for equality.
At the ceremony, Rita Moreno presented Jennifer Lopez with GLAAD’s Vanguard Award, which is presented to media professionals who, through their work, have increased the visibility and understanding of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
In her acceptance speech Lopez said, “I really want to thank GLAAD for the all of the important, daring, powerful work that you do – not only in mainstream media but in Spanish-language media too. Yes, you all need to know that GLAAD is spreading the message of love and acceptance, in English and en español. Si, el amor es el amor.” Lopez continued, “The world is changing and that’s because love is stronger than hate, as we’ve heard many times tonight. There’s never been a truer statement made. Love is love and that’s what I tell my children every day. It’s what we have to make everyone understand, so our world can be a better, safer, more diverse, more inclusive and more loving place – and we are on our way.”
Also at the event, out actress Ellen Page presented Laverne Cox with the Stephen F. Kolzak Award. In accepting the award Cox said, “Thank you so much GLAAD for this amazing honor, I’m so happy to accept the Stephen F. Kolzak Award this evening.” Cox continued, “I’m still not used to getting awards. I’m an African American, transgender woman from a working class background raised by a single mother. We are not programmed to think we should receive these kinds of awards – but I like to think that things are changing.”
GLAAD also recognized legendary TV writer and producer Norman Lear with its Pioneer Award. Manny de Guerre, founder of the Side by Side LGBT Film Festival in St. Petersburg, Russia, received the inaugural International Advocate for Change Award.
Lupita Nyong’o presented the award for Outstanding Documentary to two films who tied in the category, Call Me Kuchu and Bridegroom. Ugandan LGBT advocate John “Longjones” Abdallah Wambere accepted the award for Call Me Kuchu, along with co-directors Katherine Fairfax Wright and Malika Zouhali-Worrall. Shane Bitney Crone and director Linda Bloodworth-Thomason accepted the award for Bridegroom. Johnny Galecki presented the award for Outstanding Drama Series to Peter Paige and Bradley Bredeweg, the co-creators of ABC Family’s The Fosters, who accepted with cast members Teri Polo and Sherri Saum.
TV personality Ross Mathews hosted the event. Special guests included: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave); Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory); Naomi Campbell (The Face); Tatiana Maslany, Jordan Gavaris (Orphan Black); Tom Cullen (Downton Abbey); Eric Dane, Rebecca Gayheart; Natasha Henstridge (The Secret Circle); James Frain (Intruders); Alex Newell (Glee); Kat Graham (The Vampire Diaries); Maria Menounos (Chasing Maria Menounos); Sherri Saum, Teri Polo, Peter Paige, Bradley Bredeweg (The Fosters); Lucas Neff (Raising Hope); Meghan McCain (Take Part Live); singer Debby Boone; Caitlin Stasey (Please Like Me); Luke Newberry (In the Flesh); author and transgender advocate Chaz Bono; Shane Bitney Crone, Linda Bloodworth-Thomason (Bridegroom); Katherine Fairfax Wright, Malika Zouhali-Worrall, John “Longjones” Abdallah Wambere (Call Me Kuchu); Charlie Condou (Coronation Street); Sophie Ward (Jane Eyre); Pratibha Parmar (Nina’s Heavenly Delights); Jill Soloway, Amy Landecker, Ian Harvie (Transparent); Kate Mansi, Guy Wilson (Days of Our Lives); trans advocates Calpernia Addams, Andrea James; Husbands creators Brad Bell, Jane Espenson; comedian Suzanne Westenhoefer; trans model Carmen Carrera; trans singer Our Lady J; GLAAD National Spokespersons, Wilson Cruz and Omar Sharif, Jr., and GLAAD CEO & President Sarah Kate Ellis. DJ Tracy Young was the guest DJ at the after-party.