GLSEN, the leading education organization working to create safe and inclusive K-12 schools for LGBTQ youth, is pleased to announce that it will honor the cast and producers of the Warner Bros. Television/The CW television series “Riverdale” with the Gamechanger Award at the 2019 GLSEN Respect Awards – Los Angeles.
“We've watched the cast and producers of Riverdale create a show where LGBTQ characters fall in love, break up, get back together, and experience all the fun and challenges of high school,” said Eliza Byard, Executive Director of GLSEN. "It's so powerful when LGBTQ young people can see their lives and experiences reflected on screen, and we look forward to honoring Riverdale with the GLSEN Gamechanger Award.” The Gamechanger Award is reserved for the next generation making a difference for the LGBTQ community and around the world. “Riverdale” exemplifies all of those ideals with the amazing, diverse cast and groundbreaking storytelling about LGBTQ relationships. Its portrayal of LGBTQ characters, their enduring and endearing relationships, and the way in which they navigate love and loss is truly a game changer for viewers of all ages and backgrounds. Previous Gamechanger Award recipients include Connor Franta, Yara Shahidi, and Zendaya.
Starring KJ Apa, Lili Reinhart, Camila Mendes, Cole Sprouse, Marisol Nichols, Madelaine Petsch, Mark Consuelos, Casey Cott, Charles Melton, Vanessa Morgan, Skeet Ulrich, with Mädchen Amick, “Riverdale” returns for its fourth season Wednesday, October 9, at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on The CW. The season premiere will feature a tribute to Luke Perry. Greg Berlanti, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Sarah Schechter and Jon Goldwater are executive producers of “Riverdale,” from Berlanti Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television and CBS Television Studios. Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa developed the series, based on the Archie Comics characters.
The Co-Chairs for this year’s GLSEN Respect Awards – Los Angeles include Andrew Graham, Dave Karger, Patrick Moran, and Chip Sullivan. Honorary co-chairs include Greg Berlanti & Robbie Rogers, Matt Bomer & Simon Halls, Bruce Bozzi & Bryan Lourd, Jess Cagle & Matt Whitney, Connor Franta, Bob Greenblatt, Marilyn & Jeffrey Katzenberg, Blair & David Kohan, Max Mutchnick & Erik Hyman, Jim Parsons & Todd Spiewak, Ellen Pompeo, Julia Roberts & Danny Moder, and Kerry Washington. The event is sponsored by Apple and Wells Fargo. Last year’s ceremony honored actress and activist Yara Shahidi; Will & Grace co-creators and executive producers Max Mutchnick & David Kohan; actress, producer, and activist Ellen Pompeo; Elizabeth Gabler, President, Fox 2000 Pictures, accepting on behalf of Twentieth Century Fox Film; and Student Advocate of the Year Ruby Noboa.
The GLSEN Respect Awards, introduced in 2004 and held annually in Los Angeles and New York, showcase the work of students, educators, community leaders, and corporations who serve as exemplary role models and have made a significant impact on the lives of LGBTQ youth. Past honorees include Kerry Washington, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake, Marilyn & Jeffrey Katzenberg, Julia Roberts and Danny Moder, Zendaya, Brendon Urie, Shonda Rhimes, and Carla Gugino.
For nearly three decades, GLSEN has led the way on LGBTQ issues in K-12 education through ground-breaking original research, innovative program development, educator training, student organizing, and targeted state and federal advocacy. With the development of educational resources, direct engagement of youth and educators, and GLSEN national programs like Day of Silence, No Name-Calling Week, and Ally Week, GLSEN has seen the impact of its work in measurable improvements in the lives of LGBTQ students in the United States.