Chaz Bono will receive the Stephen F. Kolzak Award as part of
the 23rd annual GLAAD media awards in Los Angeles, it was announced
Bono is the first
transgender person to ever receive the honor, which is given
annually to an openly LGBT media professional who has made a
significant difference in promoting equality.
In 2009, Bono revealed that he is transgender and later shared
his life and transition process in the documentary
Becoming Chaz, which was nominated for a GLAAD
Media Award as well as three Emmy Awards. Also in 2011, Bono
competed on the thirteenth season of ABC's hit show, Dancing
With The Stars, making him the first-ever transgender
contestant to appear on the program.
Said Chaz of the honor: "I feel truly honored to be receiving
GLAAD's Stephen F. Kolzak award this year, not only because of the
work that I've done with the organization, but also because I fully
believe in GLAAD's mission.
"While I don't feel like a role model, I hope that by sharing my
story, which is just one in a very diverse community, I can help
open hearts and minds on what it's like to be a transgender person
and the issues our community faces."
But GLAAD says Bono has helped "reshape" opinions.
"Chaz has opened the door for countless others, reshaping the
way Americans think about transgender people today," said Mike
Thompson, Acting President of GLAAD.
"His bold leadership in sharing his story as a transgender man,
as well as his tireless work to secure equality for every American,
embodies the values of GLAAD's Stephen F. Kolzak Award."