About The DVF Awards

The DVF Awards were founded in 2010 by Diane von Furstenberg and The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation to recognize and support extraordinary women who are dedicated to transforming the lives of other women; women who have had the courage to fight, the strength to survive, and the leadership to inspire.

Honorees are celebrated annually at the DVF Awards ceremony in New York City, as part of the Women in the World conference.

Each year, five awards are bestowed to women who have demonstrated leadership, strength, and courage in their commitment to women’s causes. The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation grants each honoree $50,000 for their non-profit organization in order to further their important work.

Award Categories

  • The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award
  • The Inspiration DVF Award
  • The International DVF Award
  • The People's Voice DVF Award

Announcing the 2019
DVF Awards Honorees

The following extraordinary women will be honored at the 10th annual DVF Awards in New York on April 11, 2019.


The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Anita F. Hill

The youngest of 13 children from a farm in Oklahoma, Hill received her J.D. from Yale Law School in 1980. She began her career in private practice in Washington, D.C. There she also worked at the U. S. Education Department and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In 1989, Hill became the first African American to be tenured at the University of Oklahoma, College of Law, where she taught contracts and commercial law. Currently, at Brandeis University, she teaches courses on gender, race, social policy and legal history. Along with Provost Steve A. N. Goldstein, in 2015, Hill was responsible for implementing Fulfilling the Promise: The Brandeis University Strategic Plan. As counsel to Cohen Milstein, she advises on class action workplace discrimination cases.

In December of 2017, Professor Hill became the Chair of the Hollywood entertainment industry’s Commission to Eliminate Sexual Harassment and Advance Equality in the Workplace. In that role she will establish a best practices and policies framework for addressing workplace abuses and discrimination and creating more equitable work environments throughout the industry.

Hill’s latest book is Reimagining Equality: Stories of Gender, Race and Finding Home (Beacon Press, 2011), an analysis of the housing market collapse of 2008 and its impact on gender and racial equality. Hill adds this work to numerous other publications including books and articles on subjects ranging from bankruptcy to equal educational opportunity.

Professor Hill continues to push the envelope in pursuit of equality, teaming up with MacArthur Genius Award-winning artist Mark Bradford as he created an exhibit for the 2017 Venice Biennale International Arts Festival opening in May in Venice, Italy.

In addition, Hill is engaging prominent academics and business professionals all over the country to spearhead “The Gender/Race Imperative” a project to revive awareness of the broad capacity of Title IX, the crucial law mandating equal education opportunities for women. “The Gender/Race Imperative” will kick-start inquiry as well as legal and policy reforms that empower girls and women of all races and economic backgrounds for success in schools and workplaces. During the academic year, 2017-2018, Professor Hill served as a Martin Luther King, Jr. Fellow at MIT in the lab of information theorist and electrical engineer Professor Muriel Medard. There she and Professor Medard hosted a series on gender and race equity in education with a focus on science and engineering. Hill is a contributor to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine’s June 2018 Consensus Study Report, SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN: Climate, Culture, and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Time, Inc., Newsweek, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and Ms. Magazine have published Professor Hill’s commentary and she has made numerous appearances on national television programs.

She is the recipient of numerous awards, grants and honorary degrees. Hill’s professional and civic contributions include chairing the Human Rights Law Committee of the International Bar Association, and membership on the Board of Directors of the National Women’s Law Center and the Boston Area Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights.

Professor Hill is the subject of Freida Lee Mock’s documentary, ANITA, which premiered in January of 2013 at the Sundance Film festival. Samuel Goldwyn Company staged the film’s theatrical release in the spring of 2014.

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The Inspiration DVF Award

Katy Perry

Katy Perry made her Capitol Records debut with 2008’s One of the Boys after signing to the label in 2007. She cemented her status as a global superstar with the follow-up album, Teenage Dream (2010), which made her the only female artist (tied with Michael Jackson) to have five No. 1 singles from one album on the Billboard Hot 100 chart ("California Gurls," "Teenage Dream," "Firework," "E.T." and "Last Friday Night"). PRISM, her 2013 album, debuted at No. 1 on iTunes in 100 countries and has sold more than 12.5 million adjusted albums worldwide. With the singles “Roar," “Firework,” and “Dark Horse” each surpassing the 10 million threshold including song sales and streams, Katy became the first artist to earn three RIAA Digital Single Diamond Awards.

Katy Perry’s fourth studio album, WITNESS, debuted in June at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200, and No. 1 on iTunes in 46 countries. It set the record for the biggest week for an album by a female artist in 2017. The certified Platinum lead single, “Chained To The Rhythm,” has over 1 billion streams worldwide, views on the accompanying video made her the most-viewed female artist on VEVO. Follow-up singles, “Bon Appetit” (whose music video was Katy’s fastest viewed music video of all time, with 14.2 million views in the first 24 hours) is certified Gold, and “Swish Swish” is now certified Platinum. Globally, it has achieved more than 2 billion cumulative streams and sold more than two million adjusted albums.

In her 10 years with Capitol, she has racked up a cumulative 30+ billion streams alongside worldwide sales of more than 43+ million adjusted albums and 133+ million tracks. Katy’s 2015 Super Bowl performance is the highest-rated in the event’s history. She is the most-followed person globally on Twitter, and the first to surpass 100 million followers. She is the only female artist to have four videos surpass a billion views each. Her videos for “Firework” and “Last Friday Night” have over one billion views, while “Roar” and “Dark Horse” have surpassed the two billion mark.

Aside from being one of the best-selling musical artists of all time, Katy is an active advocate of many philanthropic causes. In 2013, Katy was appointed a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador as a result of her commitment to improving the lives of children worldwide. From traveling to Vietnam and Madagascar to highlight the needs of some of the world’s most vulnerable children, to recording PSAs about the importance of empowering girls and supporting adolescents living with HIV/AIDS, as well as raising awareness for UNICEF’s emergency relief efforts, Katy has used her powerful voice to advocate for children and support UNICEF’s mission to ensure every child’s right to health, education, equality, and protection. She was awarded with the Audrey Hepburn Humanitarian Award in 2016.

Katy has also been a champion for LGBTQ+ equality. She has received numerous awards for her work, including the Trevor Project's Hero Award in 2012, the Human Rights Campaign's National Equality Award in 2017, and amfAR’s Award of Courage in 2018. She has also performed at various events to raise funds for the fight against HIV/AIDS, including 2009's Life Ball and 2016's amfAR Cannes Gala.

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The International DVF Award

Nadia Murad

Nadia Murad, co-recipient of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, is a leading advocate for survivors of genocide and sexual violence. Nadia’s peaceful life was savagely interrupted when she was abducted in 2014 after Daesh attacked her homeland in Sinjar— with the intention of ethnically cleansing Iraq of all Yazidis. Like many minority groups, the Yazidis, have carried the weight of historical persecution. Women in particular have suffered greatly, as they have been, and continue to be victims of sexual violence. Nadia lost six brothers and her mother, and was held by the Islamic State for three months before escaping her captors.

Much of Nadia’s advocacy work is focused on meeting with global leaders to raise awareness about Daesh and its genocidal campaign against the Yazidi people. She is the president of Nadia’s Initiative which is dedicated to rebuilding communities in crisis and advocating for victims of sexual violence. Nadia’s Initiative actively works to persuade governments and other organizations to financially support efforts to rebuild the Yazidi homeland.

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The International DVF Award

Hadeel Mustafa Anabtawi

Hadeel Mustafa Anabtawi is a social entrepreneur with a passion for empowering girls and founder of The Alchemist Lab, whose educational center has offered more than 25,000 children in cities, remote villages and refugee camps the skills they need to explore themselves and the world around them with confidence and determination.

Prior to founding The Alchemist Lab, Hadeel worked with youth and found that many reached university confused and unfocused, despite having received a good education. She felt that they lacked the basic information and skills they needed to make the right decisions and start their own journey. Hadeel created The Alchemist Lab to address gaps in the traditional education system, inspiring a successful generation to be capable of change, empowering girls to turn into confident women and providing fair access to education for vulnerable children in villages and refugee camps. Their activities connect what children learn at school to the real world and are tailored to children's developmental needs, providing fun and hands-on experiences.

Hadeel has launched several initiatives, such as "Go Girls!” - a program that encourages girls to think with a STEM and scientific approach. In addition, she launched a 10-minute children’s radio segment called "Everything is Possible," which aimed to address life challenges and empower children.

Hadeel is a certified life coach and teachers' trainer on interactive teaching methodologies. She studied Industrial Engineering at the University of Jordan and holds a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Leicester. She is a Vital Voices GROW fellow and has been nominated for various awards, such as Innovation in Education by GESS Middle East 2015 and Business Woman of the Year by AlEtihad Bank.

She established her first company, Ideas for Fun, which focused on science teaching using drama in partnership with a franchise from Spain in 2006.

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The People’s Voice DVF Award

Susan Burton

Following the tragic accidental death of her five-year-old son, Susan Burton’s world collapsed. Her loss snapped the final tether of resilience, already strained by a past of pain and trauma. She descended into an emotional abyss of darkness and despair, yet was not offered the resources needed to heal. Without support, she turned to drugs and alcohol, which led to nearly 20 years revolving through cycles of incarceration.

Drawing on her personal experiences, Susan founded A New Way of Life Reentry Project (ANWOL) in 1998 — dedicating her life to helping others break the cycle of incarceration. ANWOL provides resources such as housing, case management, employment, legal services, leadership development and community organizing on behalf of and with people who are struggling to rebuild their lives after incarceration. Since its founding, more than 1,000 women and children have found safety and support in seven reentry homes. Over 300 women have been reunited with their children. Since the inception of ANWOL’s legal department in 2007, the organization has provided pro bono services to assist thousands seeking relief from the burden of criminal histories. These services have helped enhance job opportunities by expunging criminal records and offering access to occupational licenses.

Susan is a co-founder of All of Us or None (AOUON) and the Formerly Incarcerated and Convicted People’s Movement (FICPM), both national grassroots civil rights movements comprised of formerly incarcerated individuals, their families and community allies. She also leads an initiative called the SAFE Housing Network, which supports people around the world in developing culturally authentic reentry programs based on the ANWOL model.

Susan has earned numerous awards and honors for her work. In 2010, she was named a CNN Top Ten Hero and received the prestigious Citizen Activist Award from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She is a recipient of both the Encore Purpose Prize (2012) and the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award (2014). In 2015, on the 50th Anniversary of Selma and the Voting Rights Act, Susan Burton was named by the Los Angeles Times as one of eighteen New Civil Rights Leaders in the nation.

Susan is also the author of a memoir, Becoming Ms. Burton (The New Press, 2017), which received a 2018 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work in the category of Biography/Autobiography and the inaugural Goddard Riverside Stephan Russo Book Prize for Social Justice. In 2017, The New Press published 11,000 paperback “prison edition” copies of Becoming Ms. Burton, which ANWOL has sent free of charge to any prisoner who requests one. Since then, Susan has traveled into jails and prisons in 30 states and three countries, speaking with prisoners and prison officials and delivering copies of Becoming Ms. Burton.

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The People's Voice DVF Award Nominees

The People’s Voice DVF Award was chosen by popular vote and will be celebrated at the 10th annual DVF Awards to be held on April 11, 2019 in New York City.

This year’s nominees are:


Amanda Nguyen


Founder
Rise

“I continue to fight for civil rights because I’ve learned no one is powerless when we come together and no one can make us invisible when we demand to be seen.”

Amanda Nguyen is the CEO and founder of Rise, a national civil rights nonprofit dedicated to helping survivors of sexual violence. She is a 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Amanda penned her own civil rights into existence and unanimously passed the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights, after having to navigate the broken criminal justice system after her own rape. 20 bills protecting sexual violence survivors have been created modeled off of her federal law. The federal law was the 21st bill in modern US history to pass unanimously on the record.

Amanda has been named a Forbes 30 Under 30, by Foreign Policy as a Top 100 Leading Global Thinker, Marie Claire as a Young Woman of the Year, and The Tempest's #1 Woman of Color Trailblazer. Previously, Amanda was appointed by President Barack Obama to the United States Department of State as his Deputy White House Liaison and served at NASA. Amanda graduated from Harvard University.

risenow.us

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Yvette Alberdingk Thijm


Executive Director
WITNESS

“As an immigrant woman, I believe in the power of our stories to bring forward justice. I do this work to support women from vulnerable communities to stand up for human rights.”

Yvette Alberdingk-Thijm is a media activist and justice warrior who dedicates her life to putting the power of story and technology to work for the most marginalized and vulnerable communities around the world. She envisions a world where anyone can participate in creating human rights change and leads a global network of activists at WITNESS to work alongside people who speak truth to power, harnessing the potential of video and technology to ensure their voices are not silenced. Yvette grew up in The Netherlands, where she was raised in a family and culture that championed truth and equality. As an immigrant, lawyer and woman, she believes that truth is where justice starts. And as a social change agent, she knows that community is a healing and repairing force for good. Yvette went on to work in some of the world’s most innovative media and technology start-ups, including MTV Networks and JOOST, pushing the boundaries of media, tech and social good and forging new paths for herself and others. Combining her expertise in media with her commitment to truth and social change, Yvette is now determined to democratize the use of media and tech to create a just world. She believes in the power of story, and in putting that power into the hands of the courageous women who are leading the charge of speaking truth to power and creating positive change in their communities.

With her colleagues and partners at WITNESS, she is reimagining the way that change is made--making it possible for anyone, anywhere to use video and technology to tell their own stories. After all, that is where dignity, justice, and equality begin.

Yvette is also active in fostering a safer ecosystem for digital users at risk, as Board Chair for Majal.org, young women developers who create platforms to champion repressed voices, music and LGBTQ communities in the Middle East, and by serving on the Boards of Benetech.org, AccessNow, and DocSociety.

She is a frequent speaker on and advocates new narratives for human rights practice and promotes collective care as a radical act of resistance in the human rights movement.

witness.org

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Susan Burton

“I'm encouraged to do the work that I do because of the transformation I witness every day in the lives of formerly incarcerated women and their children.”

Following the tragic accidental death of her five-year-old son, Susan Burton’s world collapsed. Her loss snapped the final tether of resilience, already strained by a past of pain and trauma. She descended into an emotional abyss of darkness and despair, yet was not offered the resources needed to heal. Without support, she turned to drugs and alcohol, which led to nearly 20 years revolving through cycles of incarceration.

Drawing on her personal experiences, Susan founded A New Way of Life Reentry Project (ANWOL) in 1998 — dedicating her life to helping others break the cycle of incarceration. ANWOL provides resources such as housing, case management, employment, legal services, leadership development and community organizing on behalf of and with people who are struggling to rebuild their lives after incarceration. Since its founding, more than 1,000 women and children have found safety and support in seven reentry homes. Over 300 women have been reunited with their children. Since the inception of ANWOL’s legal department in 2007, the organization has provided pro bono services to assist thousands seeking relief from the burden of criminal histories. These services have helped enhance job opportunities by expunging criminal records and offering access to occupational licenses.

Susan is a co-founder of All of Us or None (AOUON) and the Formerly Incarcerated and Convicted People’s Movement (FICPM), both national grassroots civil rights movements comprised of formerly incarcerated individuals, their families and community allies. She also leads an initiative called the SAFE Housing Network, which supports people around the world in developing culturally authentic reentry programs based on the ANWOL model.

Susan has earned numerous awards and honors for her work. In 2010, she was named a CNN Top Ten Hero and received the prestigious Citizen Activist Award from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She is a recipient of both the Encore Purpose Prize (2012) and the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award (2014). In 2015, on the 50th Anniversary of Selma and the Voting Rights Act, Susan Burton was named by the Los Angeles Times as one of eighteen New Civil Rights Leaders in the nation.

Susan is also the author of a memoir, Becoming Ms. Burton (The New Press, 2017), which received a 2018 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work in the category of Biography/Autobiography and the inaugural Goddard Riverside Stephan Russo Book Prize for Social Justice. In 2017, The New Press published 11,000 paperback “prison edition” copies of Becoming Ms. Burton, which ANWOL has sent free of charge to any prisoner who requests one. Since then, Susan has traveled into jails and prisons in 30 states and three countries, speaking with prisoners and prison officials and delivering copies of Becoming Ms. Burton.

anewwayoflife.org

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Maria Vertkin


Founder and Executive Director
Found In Translation

“The people we serve are women and immigrants. The thing we care about is economic opportunity and healthcare access. There has never been a time in my life where it is more important to support women, immigrants, healthcare access and to enable economic mobility.”

Maria Vertkin is a social worker, immigrant, formerly homeless, and Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneur. She is the founder and executive director of Found in Translation, which provides medical interpreter training and job placement to low-income and homeless bilingual women, enabling them to turn their most stigmatized characteristic—their linguistic and cultural backgrounds—into their biggest asset in the workforce.

Found in Translation’s Language Access Fellowship is designed to level the playing field for talented, driven low-income bilingual women. It is free-of-charge and includes common-sense supports such as on-site childcare, transportation assistance, mentoring, and career coaching, and leads directly into jobs paying $25/hr+. Since 2011, Found in Translation has served 221 women who now earn an additional $1.86 million per year, while providing thousands of vulnerable patients with access to linguistically and culturally appropriate medical care. Found in Translation graduates advance equality in healthcare access, improve patient outcomes, reduce healthcare costs and save lives.

For her service and dedication to the community, Maria has received several awards, including the 2011 Kip Tiernan Social Justice Fellowship, which has enabled her to launch Found in Translation, the 2013 Echoing Green Global Fellowship, the 2015 Richard Cornuelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship from the Manhattan Institute, and the Innovator for Social Justice Prize from Grinnell College. She is profiled in the 2016 Chronicle of Philanthropy 40 Under 40 list, and in the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneurs.

found-in-translation.org

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Past Awards

2018 Honorees

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Misty Copeland, The Inspiration DVF Award

Ariela Suster, The International DVF Award (El Salvador)

Jaha Dukureh, The International DVF Award (The Gambia)

Luma Mufleh, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2017 Honorees

Dr. Jane Goodall, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Karlie Kloss, The Inspiration DVF Award

Yoani Sánchez, The International DVF Award (Cuba)

Baljeet Sandhu, The International DVF Award (United Kingdom)

Louise Dubé, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2016 Honorees

Dr. Martine Rothblatt, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Sarah Jones, The Inspiration DVF Award

Maria Pacheco, The International DVF Award (Guatemala)

Agnes Igoye, The International DVF Award (Uganda)

Emily Greener, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2015 Honorees

Melanne Verveer, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Gabrielle Giffords, The Inspiration DVF Award

Adimaimalaga Tafuna’i, The International DVF Award (Samoa)

Samar Minallah Khan, The International DVF Award (Pakistan)

Becky Straw & Jody Landers, The Adventure Project, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2014 Honorees

Gloria Steinem, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Alicia Keys, The Inspiration DVF Award

Kah Walla, The International DVF Award (Cameroon)

Liron Peleg-Hadomi & Noha Khatieb, The International DVF Award (Israel)

Veronika Scott, Empowerment Plan, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2013 Honorees

Robin Roberts, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Natalia Vodianova, The Inspiration DVF Award

Andeisha Farid, The International DVF Award (Afghanistan)

Sunitha Krishnan, The International DVF Award (India)

Tammy Tibbetts, She’s the First, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2012 Honorees

Oprah Winfrey, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Jaycee Dugard, The Inspiration DVF Award

Panmela Castro, The International DVF Award (Brazil)

Chouchou Namegabe, The International DVF Award (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Layli Miller-Muro, Tahirih Justice Center, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2011 Honorees

Hillary Rodham Clinton, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Elizabeth Smart, The Inspiration DVF Award

Sohini Chakraborty, The International DVF Award (India)

Kakenya Ntaiya, The International DVF Award (Kenya)

Taryn Davis, American Widow Project, The People’s Voice DVF Award

2010 Honorees

Ingrid Betancourt, The Lifetime Leadership DVF Award

Danielle Saint-Lot, The International DVF Award (Haiti)

Sadiqa Basiri Saleem, The International DVF Award (Afghanistan)

Katherine Chon, Polaris Project, The People’s Voice DVF Award