While the GLSEN Respect Awards was about much more than a night of fashion, honoree Kate Hudson dazzled as she hit the red carpet at the Beverly Wilshire Friday night, glowing in a plunging Temperley golden sequined jumper complete with cascading chevron patterns.
The Deepwater Horizon star was on hand to receive the Inspiration Award for her longstanding advocacy work for young people at the annual event, which honors those who have made a significant impact on the lives of LGBTQ youth. “It means a lot because this is something I’m very passionate about, which is working with children and trying to create, inside of schools, a much more tolerant and compassionate and fulfilled child,” Hudson, who paired her look with nude pumps and wore her locks in cascading waves, told InStyle.
Whether they were presenting or not, stars like Nina Dobrev, Milo Ventimiglia, and honorary co-chair Julia Roberts echoed those sentiments, all praising GLSEN for its hard work and emphasizing the importance of uplifting LGBTQ youth. “It’s an event about respect and love, and unfortunately we’re not seeing those things reflected in politics, in schools, in many places in the world right now, and I think we need to bring it back,” Dobrev, who stunned in a floral strapless Armani dress with Jerome C. Rousseau shoes and presented the Champion Award to Target told us. “We need to make love and respect cool again,” she continued.
As the event kicked off, guests munched on caprese salads, baked chicken and asparagus, and berries topped with a cream pouf for dessert. After mixing and mingling during dinner, Roberts, who chatted up guests in a collared black dress with winged sleeves embellished with floral details, soon hit the stage to present People’s editorial director Jess Cagle with the Inspiration Award.
“Reg. Bev. Wil. Here I am back again. I’m like a bad penny in this hotel,” Roberts said with a laugh, paying tribute to her Pretty Woman roots (the hotel scenes in the film were shot at the Beverly Wilshire). “I rarely miss bedtime for my kids, and it is past their bedtime, and I rarely write things down because a paper trail is a terrible thing,” Roberts said, adding that she didn’t mind doing both because of her love for Cagle. “So, I’m wearing pantyhose, and I’m out past my bedtime,” she continued. “It is my pleasure every year to support GLSEN. I love this night,” she continued, before encouraging guests to donate 49 dollars to GLSEN celebrate her 49th birthday next Friday. “I’ve been in this business a long time, as this hotel can attest,” she went on. I have met all kinds of people. So, I know how rare it is for someone so committed and accomplished in the field to also be someone who happens to be the most friendly, charming, smart, adorable, kind and fabulous as Jess Cagle. But, in this case, with the man I have the distinct pleasure of honoring tonight, it is unparalleled.”
After Cagle accepted his honor, Jeffrey Katzenberg shared kind words about Hudson as he presented her with her award. “In order to do it's incredibly important work GLSEN requires inspirers,” he said. “These are role models who demonstrate to the world the right way to behave toward fellow human beings, something we cannot possibly appreciate enough today, role models like the woman we are honoring here tonight.” “She is a passionate anti-bullying advocate, and has used her social media presence to promote a world of tolerance and acceptance,” he continued. “Kate embodies the mission of GLSEN and is an inspiration for each and every one of us.”
As Hudson picked up her Inspiration award, she paid tribute to her mom Goldie Hawn, who inspired her LGBTQ advocacy when she created non-profit organization The Hawn Foundation. “My mother talked about how she was driven to bring a solution to children who were suffering from high levels of stress, who were completely lacking the skills to navigate such a complex world.”
“She was incredibly moved by the statistics of school violence and bullying, youth depression, suicide, and the persistent failure of the education system to help children cope with these issues and flourish,” she continued. “I became very involved with my mom and her mission and now, after 15 years, we’re reaching a million children, and watching them soar to become more tolerant and compassionate.” “It’s so wonderful for me tonight to be here with another organization and that shares a similar vision for our next generation and those to come,” she continued. “And to create any really change, and real movement, we all know that it starts with our children, in their home environment, in their schools.”
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