Photos, story by Jill Beckel
The 2nd Annual Rad Awards event was the place to be if you wanted to hang out with some seriously smart, cool chicks (and dudes) all night. The event was held on a cool spring night Tuesday, May 3rd at Stratus Lounge. Everyone was dressed in their most fashionable attire and ready to mix and mingle. Stratus staff served up some tasty light bites, gin cocktails and Prosecco.
According to their website, Rad Girls is “a celebration of spirited women who are constantly achieving, innovating, and inspiring. It is an ongoing conversation between empowered women. Let’s celebrate success. Most importantly, Rad Girls is about collaboration. It is about making sure that we actively light one another’s torches because we burn brighter together.”
Everyone got quiet once the awards began as the founder of Rad-Girls.com, Leah Kauffman, took the stage. Kauffman is a media executive living in Philadelphia. In her spare time, she interviews successful female entrepreneurs for her website, which she uses as a storytelling platform for inspiring professional women. She is one very rad woman herself and has been included in Philly Magazine’s ‘76 People to Watch’, was #66 on Blender’s Hot List, and MSN named the “Obama Girl” as one of 11 Most Influential Women in the world.
Each award was given by a different presenter who gave a quick description of what the award was celebrating. The award winners brought lots of family and friends in tow for support and the air quickly filled with loud applause and cheers.
One winner who stood out was Marley Dias who won “Educator of the Year.” At just 11 years old, she was also the youngest award winner. Marley noticed that none of the books she was reading in school had black girls as the main character. Determined to find books with relatable heroes, she set a goal of collecting 1,000 books about black girls by the beginning of February 2016 and with this goal, #1000blackgirlbooks was born. She has far exceeded her goal with almost 4,000 books and counting! Next, she wants to set up a black girls book club and pressure school districts to revise which books are required for students to read.
Technologist Of The Year: Kara Lindstrom
Designer of The Year: Shophouse Design
Artist Of The Year: Amberella
Nonprofit Of The Year: Yael Lehmann
Educator Of The Year: Marley Dias
Product Of The Year: Courtney Apple
Connector Of The Year: Corinne Warnshuis
Innovator Of The Year: Yasmine Mustafa
Storyteller Of The Year: Joy Manning and Marisa McClellan
Entrepreneur Of The Year: Elena Brennan
Activists of The Year: Kristin Schwab
Rad Guy Of The Year: Dr. Stephen Tang
Rad Girl Of The Year: Danielle Cohn
Congratulations to all of the Rad winners and nominees this year! Keep on being rad. Until next year…