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2016 BLACK GIRLS ROCK! RECAP

In 2006 Beverly Bond created Black Girls Rock! For the 10th Anniversary, on this magical night in Newark, NJ, Bond brought together bright young ladies and dynamic women to celebrate Black sisterhood. This year's honorees include Gladys Knight, Rihanna, Shonda Rhimes, Amandla Stenberg, Danai Gurira and more. Below we take you through a night of  awards and performances.

The Red Carpet Experience

Tracee Ellis Ross returns as host and opens up with a Medley of memorable performances ranging from Queen Latifah to Beyonce.

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Honorees

Star Power Celebrant - Danai Gurira

The Walking Dead's  Michonne, a sword-wielding bad ass is an incredible playwright, and is making history with Eclipsed, a Broadway production that stars Lupita Nyong’o. The play is about the lives of women during the Liberian Civil War.

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“I want to encourage all these other black girls. I know it can get tough out there. It can get downright ugly. I have walked the path, or some version of it, but know you are designed for greatness. And black girl, you rock because you have so much potential. Your power and your resilience will help to heal this world..."

Young, Gifted & Black Celebrant - Amandla Stenberg

After her break out performance as Rue in Hunger Games, everyone fell in love with her. Being aware of her popularity, she begin to speak out major current events. She even played  video on cultural appropriation.

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“I remember looking in the mirror when I was a little girl, and looking and all that hair, and being like, “Ugh why is that there?” I wanted it to go down so much. I remember suppressing it and brushing it. And being so frustrated that I was so big and so bold. I felt like I took up too much space..."

Living Legend Celebrant – Gladys Knight

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“My first trophy was given to me when I was 7 years old. I had just won the Ted Mac original amateur hour. It was right here in New York. But there were none of my sisters there. There were none of my sisters to help me hold the trophy as they had asked the kids on the show to do, and none of their parents would allow them to do it. I was the only African American sister on the show…It was amazing, because I had a black girl that rocked in my family. I called her mom. She nurtured me.”

Community Change Agent Celebrants - Black Lives Matter

The founders of #BlackLivesMatter, Opal Tometi, Alicia Garza and Patrisse Cullors are the women behind the hashtag that evolved into an organization that is being called a Movement. 

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“We did not start the Black liberation movement, but we are honored to contribute. Our fight is grounded in the pursuit of dignity and sanctity of all Black lives. We are not the new Civil Rights Movement; however, we stand on the shoulders of giants who paved the way for Black dignity. We who believe in freedom cannot rest.”

Shot Caller Celebrant - Shonda Rhimes

The Queen of Thursday Night television won the Shot Caller Award. She's the writer of Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder.

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“For those of us up here on the stage, our careers have been named. Our paths have been chosen. We have picked our mountains and we have started to climb it. Because the minute someone starts giving you awards, you are more history than future..."

Rock Star Celebrant - Rihanna

“I believe God put us all here for a reason and we all have our purpose and we are here to fulfill our purpose individually. I think the thing that’s kept me sane, the thing that’s kept me humble, the thing that’s kept me successful is being myself. I only know how to do that..."

Presentations & Performances
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