Laverne Cox’s mom surprised the Orange is the New Black star as she accepted her award from newly-minted Juno star Ellen Page; lesbian and gay advocates from Uganda and Russia took the opportunity to speak out about their country’s anti-LGBT laws; Naomi Campbell paid tribute to trans models, including Carmen Carrera who was in the audience, and Lupita Nyong’o spoke out in solidarity of LGBT people in Africa.
Additional celebrities at the entertainment awards show included: Rita Moreno, who presented the Vanguard Award to Jennifer Lopez, Norman Lear received the Pioneer Award, Johnny Galecki, Tom Cullen, Eric Dane, Rebecca Gayheart, Natasha Henstridge, Alex Newell, Maria Menounos, Peter Paige, Meghan McCain, Chaz Bono, Guy Wilson, Suzanne Westenhoefer, Our Lady J, among others.
GLAAD National Spokespersons, Wilson Cruz and Omar Sharif, Jr., and GLAAD CEO & President Sarah Kate Ellis, were also there. DJ Tracy Young was the guest DJ at the after-party.
“I’m so moved by the work that GLAAD has been doing, particularly over the past year, to make sure that the ‘T’ is not silent in the LGBT community,” Cox said. “For years, I was trying to have a career as an actor doing what I love to do most and was told repeatedly that they didn’t know what to do with me, and that I would not work.”
Naomi Campbell took the stage and offered: “…along with GLAAD, I encourage even more diversity in the fashion world, that includes welcoming trans models to the runways. Much love Lea T and also to Carmen Carrera, and I know Carmen is in the house tonight. She’s in the fashion magazines W, Italian Vogue and also just to note the recent Barney’s campaign […] The truth is LGBT culture and fashion go hand in hand. They flourish in light of making bold and brave statements.”
A poignant moment of the evening took place when megastar Jennifer Lopez accepted her award.
“Tonight, I thank GLAAD not only for giving me the Vanguard Award, but for honoring The Fosters as the Outstanding Drama of the Year. We are so proud of this show, because our biggest hope is that it’s outstanding because it is doing the same for young people – helping them feel loved, understood, included – as Rita did for me, and as GLAAD does today,” said Lopez.
“I have to give it up for my lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender fans because they be loyal,” Lopez continued. “Finally, I really want to thank GLAAD for all of the important, daring, powerful work that you do, not only in mainstream media, but in Spanish-language media too. You all need to know that GLAAD is spreading the message of love and acceptance in English and en Espanol. El amor es el amor.”
Academy Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o presented the award for Outstanding Documentary to Shane Bitney Crone, the subject and producer of Bridegroom, and the film’s director Linda Bloodworth-Thomason. Bridegroom and Call Me Kuchu tied for the award
For a full list of award recipients, visit GLAAD’s recap here.