On Tuesday, Glamour announced its honorees for the Glamour Women of the Year 2016 awards. The awards aim to highlight the achievements of women in various fields. Notable on the list, which included Zendaya, Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles and Gwen Stefani, were the co-founders of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors and Opal Tometi started the social movement in 2013, after George Zimmerman was found not guilty for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. What began as a viral Facebook post with the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter turned into a national movement with 42 different chapters in different cities. The organization has since led protests and dominated discussion about race relations and police brutality in America, and garnered national attention after the August 2014 shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri at the hands of a police officer.
“We wanted to connect people who were already buzzing about all this stuff and get them to do something, not just retweet or like or share. We thought, How do we get folks together and take that energy and create something awesome?” Garza said about starting the group. “We were courageous enough to call it what it was. But more than that, to offer an alternative. An aspirational message: Black lives matter,” Tometi added.
The three women said that while Black Lives Matter has faced incredible obstacles in its three years of existence, their bond keeps them going. “We have built a sisterhood, a community. Friends and people who’d look out for you, who have your back, who inspire you but also challenge you. And you can rise together,” said Tometi.
Read the full profile of Garza, Cullors and Tometi at Glamour.com.