Black Girls Rock! is an annual award show celebrating the history-making achievements of black women. On Tuesday, March 6, BET celebrated its 10 years of black girl appreciation as a non-profit organization, with the event hosted by Black-ish‘s Tracee Ellis Ross.
There were a whole host of powerful black women who were in attendance that night, including ABC mega-producer Shonda Rhimes, legendary soul singer Erykah Badu, actress Amandla Stenberg, and Lauryn Hill, along with many others. Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton also joined the stage to introduce Black Girls Rock! creator Beverly Bond.
“Being a Black girl empowering another Black girl is really a great position to be in,” said Kelly Rowland Tuesday night, reports Billboard. “I have been around so many Black girls who who have rocked my world. They made me feel comfortable in my skin and gave me great confidence.”
Danai Gurira, actress and playwright, took home the “Star Power” Award for her work in the hit AMC series The Walking Dead, as well as her broadway play Eclipse, which received rave reviews.
Actress Amandla Stenberg has been speaking out on racial issues, cultural appropriation, and loving her blackness, all of which were present during her acceptance speech for the “Young, Black and Gifted” Award. Stenberg said that her blackness does not stop her from being beautiful and intelligent, and that she is those things because of her blackness.
“I followed Black Girls Rock! since the inception,” Andra Day said. “I remember when I first heard about it, I was like, ‘Wow, this is empowering and it’s amazing.’ It’s a platform for Black women to see us supporting each other so it’s really exciting to be invited and a part of it.”
“I’m just really excited this is our 10-year anniversary for Black Girls Rock!,” said Bond. “Just to have built it to this point, to bring it to this space and to have everything, I’m like wow this all happened off of one idea that I continued to build so it’s really exciting.”
Bond also went on to briefly discuss Beyoncé, as many other women did that night. It’s safe to say that everyone in attendance is part of the Beyhive and is looking forward to the release of her next album.
“I’m looking forward to Beyoncé’s next album and looking forward to miss Lauryn Hill’s next album,” Bond said. “I heard a little bit of that in rehearsal and it’s like ‘Wow!'”
Speaking of music, Black Girls Rock! featured a great lineup of musical performances from artists like Monica, Brandy, Jazmine Sullivan, Lauryn Hill, Marsha Ambrosius, Natalie Stewart, and Gladys Knight. The “Empress of Soul” singer was honored with the “Living Legend Award” for the evening.
Those who were also given Black Girls Rock! Awards were chef Haile Thomas, young entrepreneur Maya Penn, and the 11-year-old who launched her own reading campaign called #1000BlackGirlBooks, Marley Dias.
[Photo by Brian Killian/Getty Images]