Broadway World: Uzo Aduba, Eva Longoria & More Join EMILY'S LIST Pre-Oscars Event
By TV News Desk
Today, EMILY's List-the nation's largest resource for women in politics-hosted a pre-Oscars brunch and panel discussion at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills titled, “Defining Women: The Power of Lifting-Up Women's Voices from Hollywood to Washington DC.”
EMILY's List brought together a powerhouse mix of entertainment industry and elected leaders and activists for a conversation about the challenges women in entertainment and politics continue to face and the importance of paving the way toward greater equality and inclusion. The event celebrated the progress women continue to make in both industries, highlighted the record number of female candidates in the presidential Democratic primary, congressional, and down-ballot races, and in entertainment industry leadership positions. The event and speakers also emphasized the importance of working together to engage voters going into the pivotal 2020 general election cycle.
Panelists included Award-winning actress, performer, and activist Uzo Aduba, candidate for U.S. House (TX-21) and former Texas state senator Wendy Davis, actor, director, producer, and activist Eva Longoria, and songwriter, musician, artist, and activist Amanda Shires. The panel was moderated by actor, director, author, and activist Amber Tamblyn. EMILY's List President Stephanie Schriock and EMILY's List Creative Council co-chair Chelsea Handler offered opening remarks.
“We have a lot of work ahead of us, but our power is also greater than ever before,” said EMILY's List President Stephanie Schriock. “Now, we must use it to get women in the rooms where decisions get made – in government, in business, in entertainment, and everywhere else, and to support all the women facing challenges men don't have to face.”
“To make real and effective change, we have to have a mentality of community and to lean on our teammates,” added panelist Uzo Aduba. “It's like a relay race. You can be the anchor leg, but that baton is not getting around the track without those three other ladies.”
Chelsea Handler also called on women to maintain the momentum and work together. “Partnering with EMILY's list allowed us to take concrete action to make sure that women would make their mark in 2018. And guess what? We did.”
The brunch and panel discussion was hosted by the EMILY's List Creative Council, which aims to help the organization reach new, diverse voters across industries, geographies, and age groups. The Creative Council is co-chaired by film producer and Peabody Award winner Paul Bernon and comedian Chelsea Handler.
This event comes on the heels of a controversial entertainment industry award season focused on the greater need for inclusion and representation both behind and in front of the camera and at the beginning of the critical 2020 election cycle – which will profoundly impact women's ability to access comprehensive health care and workplace protections and industry efforts to afford greater opportunities to traditionally underrepresented artists and creators.
Panelist Wendy Davis urged women to keep fighting and consider running for office. “We should actively try to bring diverse voices, perspectives, and live experiences to the political sphere,” she said. “We can't get complacent.”
The host committee included Kristen Bell, Sara Benincasa, Tracy Brennan, Jordan Brown, Yvette Nicole Brown, Sarah Clossey, Laura Dawn, Marissa Devins, Lisa Ellis, Joy Fehily, Kathryn Hahn, Chelsea Handler, Erica Huggins, Rene Jones, Sue Kroll, Lisa Ling , Hannah Linkenhoker, Hannah Minghella, Olivia Munn, Andrea Nelson Meigs, Maren Olson, Jo Piazza, Maddy Roth, Marie Sheehy, Darnell Strom, Amber Tamblyn, Lizzie Thompson, Peter Trinh, Adam Umhoefer, Thomas Wellington, and WME.
The sponsors of the event were Nancy Stephens, Suzanne Lerner, Seth MacFarlane, Paul Bernon, Jihee Huh, Julia Gouw, Wendy Greuel, Suzy Wilson, Linda Peterson, and Lauren Donner.