The energy was palpable Friday afternoon in Marina del Rey, Calif. as hundreds gathered for the inaugural international women awards luncheon. An occasion to celebrate the beauty, cultural and creative achievements of black women all around the world, the event is the brainchild of host and creator of The Diaspora Dialogues, Koshie Mills who started the luncheon after realizing that weren’t many local events devoted to celebrating women from the diaspora.
Honored were several worthy individuals from model Duckie Thot to Grammy award-winning singer Estelle who also performed. Michelle Williams served as the ceremony’s host at the event which also honored Bozoma St. John, Claire Sulmers and the iconic actress Sheryl Lee Ralph with the ROAR Sankofa Award.
Mills, a staunch campaigner of bridging the gap between Africans and African-Americans, shared an impactful speech about African pride and celebrating ones heritage.“For a long time we have been told, as African women, we have no ingenuity and creativity. You can either complain or own your space in this world. We have to understand that as black African women, we are one and it’s so important for you to celebrate your beauty.”
By Samantha Ofole-Prince (photos courtesy of Royalty Image)