Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Girl Scouts to Accept ‘Diversity Advocate’ Award on Behalf of Healthy Media Commission

The leaders of the Healthy MEdia Commission for Positive Images of Women and Girls today expressed gratitude to the Walter Kaitz Foundation for the Foundation’s decision to bestow upon the Commission the Foundation’s Diversity Advocate Award.

“The Healthy MEdia Commission strives to promote representations of women in the media in the areas of healthy body images, active and diverse female characters, equal and healthy relationships, and increased roles of women and girls,” said Academy Award-winning actor Geena Davis, Founder of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and a co-chair of the Healthy MEdia Commission. “We’re proud to receive this award in recognition of our goals to ensure we’re creating a positive media environment for our children.”

The Healthy MEdia Commission is guided by its principal sponsors, Girl Scouts of the USA, The Creative Coalition, The National Association of Broadcasters, and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association. The Walter Kaitz Foundation is the cable industry’s national foundation dedicated to advocating for diversity.

“It’s especially gratifying that a prestigious organization such as the Kaitz Foundation, which is dedicated to enhancing and increasing diversity in media, would recognize the efforts of the Commission. We thank the Foundation for that recognition,” said Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Anna Maria Chávez, who will accept the Award in behalf of the Commission. “We and the Healthy MEdia Commissioners also look forward later this fall to delivering a full set of recommendations on how to encourage the proliferation of healthy images of women and girls in all forms of media.”

The Kaitz Foundation on July 18 announced that the Healthy MEdia Commission would be recognized with its Diversity Advocate Award at the foundation’s annual Awards Dinner on Wednesday, Sept. 12, in New York City. The award is presented to an individual or organization outside of the cable industry that has demonstrated unwavering commitment to diversity.

“Through visionary leadership, this individual or organization has directly or indirectly fostered a more embracing and inclusive diversity environment” in the media industry, said the Foundation in announcing the Award. “Recognizing media’s role in influencing a child’s growth and development, the Healthy MEdia Commission for Positive Images of Women and Girls supports efforts to increase the number of female characters in the media and is working to ensure that female roles, images, and portrayals are authentic, balanced, and healthy. [The Commission also] brings together media leaders, subject experts and advocates for children to create recommendations for promoting positive media images.”

Actor and President of The Creative Coalition, Tim Daly said, “The Creative Coalition is proud to be one of the ‘architects’ of the Healthy MEdia Commission. It is our mission to use the unique voice of the entertainment industry to support issues of positive social cause. The Healthy MEdia Commission is one of the best examples of where the diverse and powerful platforms of entertainment can serve the common good and, in particular, our next generation of women leaders.”

“This recognition is a watershed moment for the Healthy MEdia Commission,” said Former FCC Commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate, ITU Special Envoy and Laureate for Child Online Protection and the other co-chair of the Healthy MEdia Commission. “We hope it will serve to bring this issue to the attention of media outlets and organizations nationwide, and to encourage the media and entertainment industries to portray images of girls and women in a healthy, realistic, and constructive light.”

More information about the membership and objectives of the Healthy MEdia Commission is available on the “Watch What You Watch” page on www.girlscouts.org at http://tinyurl.com/cgvxspy.

For more information on the Walter Kaitz Foundation Dinner at the Hilton New York in New York City, contact the Foundation at (202) 222-2490, or email Michelle Ray, Senior Director of Programs and Strategic Initiatives for the Walter Kaitz Foundation, at mray@walterkaitz.org. Full information about the dinner also can be found at www.walterkaitz.org.