This is major news for Lena Waithe and Shonda Rhimes. They are set to be honored at the upcoming Human Rights Campaign Dinner.
According to reports, both women as well with actor Matt Bomer, will be awarded for special accolades. Rhimes will receive the National Equality Award for her constant fight for the LBGTQ community. “I am honored to be receiving this award from an organization that does so much to combat oppression, exclusion, and hate,” she said in a press release. “I am proud to be an ally in this fight.”
However, Waithe will be receiving the Visibility Award for being a leader in the LGBTQ+ community for unapologetically being herself. She spoke about being celebrated and not conforming to other people’s standards.
“Centering the intersection of queerness and Blackness has been at the forefront of my work and drives me to continue to share Black queers stories for myself, my community, and the world,” she said. “I am unapologetically Black, queer, and a woman- telling intersectional stories that spotlight our authentic experiences is a crucial path towards a future where equal protection and equal opportunity is not a privilege but a guarantee.”
The Human Rights Campaign will also hold the Equality Convention, a day before the National Dinner, as a way to “bring together political and cultural voices… leaders from across the country.”
The president of the Human Rights Campaign, Kelley Robinson, also spoke about the upcoming event. “This weekend will be about convening bold, dynamic and powerful voices in a pivotal time for the LGBTQ+ movement—Shonda, Lena and Matt are pioneers in their field and deserve to be celebrated for the immeasurable contributions they’ve made to the LGBTQ+ community. And with next generation leaders like Libby, Grayson, Daniel and Hobbes, I know our future is brighter than ever.”
She added, “The National Dinner is a time to bask in the beauty of what it means to be queer, but also to clearly communicate to our community, and the world, how we must intentionally show up for the year ahead of us. The LGBTQ+ community is living in a state of emergency—full stop. It is up to all of us to combat this hate and show anti-LGBTQ+ extremists the growing power of our community—and in 2024, the unharnessed power of the LGBTQ+ vote.”
The Human Rights Campaign Dinner will take place on October 14 in Washington D.C. at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.