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May 20, 2024

Our Favorite Moments from the 2024 Women of Vision Awards

by Ms. Foundation

On May 14 at the Weylin in Brooklyn, NY, we celebrated feminist leaders and recognized a powerful decade of growth for the organization under the leadership of President and CEO Teresa C. Younger.

Below are a few of our favorite moments from the program!

Singer, songwriter, and storyteller Ari Afsar started the evening off with an incredible performance.

Co-hosts Danielle Moodie, host of iHeart’s #WokeAF Daily, co-host of the Daily Beast’s The New Abnormal and #democracyish, and Ms. Foundation Board Member, and nationally syndicated radio host Angela Yee of Way Up with Angela Yee and previously The Breakfast Club took the stage and led us through the evening.

“What do we do when we’re under attack? I’ll tell you: we don’t back down. In this room we are the difference makers. We are the dreamweavers, the visionaries, that reimagine the world not as they want it to be but how we design it to be,” said Danielle Moodie.

As a grantee partner and Executive Director of Southern Birth Justice Network, Jamarah Amani was honored as a Woman of Vision for her vital role in building the birth justice movement.

“My parents intended to conceive and birth a warrior, an activist who would carry on the struggle for Black liberation. And so here I stand on all of that powerful legacy. I am a birth justice midwife. Birth justice means that every person has a right to decide if, when, where, how and with whom to give birth. Birth justice means full spectrum care – including abortion and reproductive and sexual health and wellness for everybody. Birth justice is providers who respect your pronouns, your identity, your values, your culture and your ways of being. Birth justice means your body is always yours and you never have to surrender your body or your human rights to a system that was designed to destroy you.”

Lateefah Simon is a past grantee partner, a nationally recognized advocate for civil rights and social justice, and the President of MeadowFund. She was recognized with the Marie C. Wilson Award.

“There are few women who were around in those early days who understood collectively what we could do. If Marie was here today, I’d tell her I’m not running for Congress, I’m going to win. And I’ll say this to you now of what she taught me – philanthropy can be different…Justice is not service, what we deserve is liberation…And that has always been the work of the Ms. Foundation.” 

Ms. Foundation President & CEO Teresa C. Younger and Melissa Harris-Perry, Maya Angelou Presidential Chair at Wake Forest University and award-winning author, came together for an interview in recognition of Teresa’s 10th anniversary at the helm and the organization’s growth.

“We are all assigned to do one thing. All you have to do is one thing. You don’t have to do everything. My one thing is to build deep relationships and then let people go and do their best lives. Go, be, do,” said Teresa.

The Executive Director of the Campaign School at Yale University, Patricia Russo presented a congressional resolution honoring the Foundation’s 50th anniversary, which was accepted by Ms. Foundation Board Chair Jenna Skinner Scanlan.

As a grantee partner and Executive Director of Ohio Women’s Alliance, Rhiannon Carnes was honored with a Woman of Vision Award for her fearless dedication to reproductive justice.

“Regardless of what is popular or what is familiar, it takes bravery and determination to build a liberation movement—navigating through limited resources and at times very little allyship when standing on the right side of justice and freedom. This moment will reveal itself in the future of our children and generations to come. And despite how much labor is required or how uncomfortable it may feel, they will call upon us to answer. Who was courageous enough to refrain from turning a blind eye? And who was strong enough to refrain from turning our backs? And if we watered and cared for the seeds we planted or if we allowed weeds to destroy and tarnish what we’ve grown together?”

Teresa C. Younger and Ms. Foundation Deputy CEO Ruth McFarlane announced that since the start of the Foundation’s ambitious 18-month campaign to raise $100M — Creating the Future We Deserve — in January 2023, the Ms. Foundation has raised over 94 million dollars in funds to support the work of the foundation for the next 50 years.

The Free to Be You and Me Award honors young activists enacting change and leading the way for future generations. Sophia Madrigal was honored for her work focused on the healing power of indigenous storytelling through her Gold Award earning project with the Girl Scouts of the USA.

 “In storytelling, there is a place to hold the generation which was lost to boarding schools, and the ongoing crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous people (MMIP), to tell their story so their families are not forced to carry the worst horrors of a silent and forgotten war. In seeing our stories celebrated and protected, Indigenous people are seeing our dreams come true. In many ways the most important thing I can bring to help my community, as an Indigenous girl, is my voice, and I can do that through storytelling.”

The founders of Culture House – Raeshem Nijhon, Carri Twigg and Nicole Galovsky – were recognized as Women of Vision for their impactful work and commitment to diversity and inclusion across all of their projects.

Carri Twigg said, “We’re so honored to be here with you all and to be recognized in this way. We founded Culture House to make media with two things. First and foremost that contributes to a shared vision and is engaged and more interconnected. And secondly, to provide opportunity to other creatives that align with our values.”

Following the awards ceremony, renowned DJ Mary Mac performed a special after-party set.

For more photos, check out our Facebook album! Credit for all photos to Getty for Ms. Foundation for Women.