File under This Could Have Happened Years Ago: Madonna is receiving the Advocate for Change award at the 2019 GLAAD Media Awards.
The longtime LGBTQ icon will accept the award, GLAAD announced on Tuesday in a news release, during the GLAAD Media Awards — the 30th installment — on May 4 in Manhattan. And yes, Madge will be in physical attendance.
She’s only the second person to receive the award; President Bill Clinton was the prior recipient, accepting in 2013 for, per GLAAD, “his advocacy work to overturn the anti-LGBTQ Defense of Marriage Act and advance marriage equality nationwide.”
The GLAAD release ticked off a number of advocacy touchstones from Madonna, from her music to her rhetoric.
“Madonna always has and always will be the LGBTQ community’s greatest ally and it is only fitting to honor and celebrate our biggest advocate at GLAAD’s biggest event ever,” GLAAD president and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said. “From the HIV crisis to international LGBTQ issues, she fearlessly pushes for a world where LGBTQ people are accepted.”
In addition to appearances at awareness concerts and benefits, Madonna has wielded her advocacy via her art, populating her videos and tours with LGBTQ performers. When her tour documentary “Truth or Dare” presented gay dancers to the world in 1991 — six years before Ellen came out on her eponymous sitcom, and seven years before the beating death of Matthew Shepard captured headlines and shifted national attention to hate crime legislation.
And, as GLAAD points out, 2019 marks 30 years since Madonna released “Like a Prayer,” her fourth album and one that gave the LGBTQ community anthems including “Express Yourself.”
The awards take place in Los Angeles on March 28, in addition to the NYC installment at the New York Hilton Midtown. Madonna is only slated to appear at the local version.
The full list of nominees is 27 categories and 151 names/titles long; see it at glaad.org.