Oscar-winning actress Octavia Spencer is set to receive the Inspiration Award at the 2019 GLSEN Respect Awards. GLSEN, an education organization working to create safe and inclusive K-12 schools for LGBTQ youth, will present Spencer with the award at the annual gala which will take place on October 25 at the Beverly Wilshire in Los Angeles.
“GLSEN is deeply honored to present the Inspiration Award to Octavia Spencer, an actor who has devoted her career to diverse storytelling, promoting social good, and is a steadfast ally for the LGBTQ community,” said Eliza Byard, Executive Director of GLSEN. “Octavia is a role model for combining art with activism and a true embodiment of the Inspiration Award.”
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Spencer has appeared in critically acclaimed films such as The Shape of Water, Hidden Figures and The Help (for which she received an Oscar). She has been an outspoken ally for LGBTQ rights, including marriage equality and issues surrounding equality and homophobia. With roles in LGBTQ-centric films such as A Kid Like Jake, she uses her platform to move the conversation forward when it comes to advocacy and impact.
The GLSEN Respect launched in 2004 and are held in Los Angeles and New York. The ceremony showcases the work of students, educators, community leaders, and corporations who serve as exemplary role models and have made a significant impact on the lives of LGBTQ youth. Past honorees include Kerry Washington, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake, Marilyn & Jeffrey Katzenberg, Julia Roberts and Danny Moder, Zendaya, Brendon Urie, Shonda Rhimes, and Carla Gugino.