The Fox show “Empire” and “Hunger Games” producer Nina Jacobson were honored by the Human Rights Campaign this week at the 2016 HRC Gala Dinner and Auction. The event drew hundreds of supporters, celebrities, and friends to the LA Live Marriott downtown.
“Empire has undeniably changed hearts and minds in the fight for LGBT equality,” according to HRC President Chad Griffin. “This groundbreaking series has especially helped to raise the visibility of LGBT people of color, whose stories have been underrepresented in the media.”
Griffin said that Jacobson, ”uses her incredible platform to be a vocal advocate for LGBT equality, and sets the stage as an example for others to follow.”
In presenting the HRC Visibility Award to Jacobson, producer and longtime friend Ryan Murphy said, “She’s always been 100%, unconditionally herself,” even as others kept silent for fear of being fired for being openly gay in Hollywood.
In the accompanying LGBT Hollywood video, reporters Renee Sotile and MJ Godges capture Jussie Smollett & Estelle on stage, and some red carpet fun with Ta’Rhonda Jones, who portrays Porsha on “Empire.” Castmate Kaitlin Doubleday, speaks her mind about the current Presidential campaign, and also on hand are Gabourey Sidibe, Serayah, and Bryshere Gray.
“Empire” producer Lee Daniel accepted the HRC honor, accompanied by his partner, Jahil Fisher, to whom he proposed during the event.