TRANS actress and activist Laverne Cox has been named Glamour magazines’s 2014 Woman of the Year, a title annually given to a select group of influential women.
“When we get to know people as people, then all the misconceptions that we might have about folks who are different from us get knocked away,” Cox says in her profile feature for the magazine.
” I meet people who say that my role has given them the courage to say, ‘this is who I am’ and ‘I can transition and be successful and to be out as a trans person’.”
According to 1992 and 2006 Woman of the Year Katie Couric, Laverne Cox is worthy of the title because “her unparalleled candour, courage, and eloquence have helped us understand a community that is far too often misunderstood”.
“She teaches us that gender identity lives, first and foremost, in our hearts and minds,” Couric added.
This year has been a big one for Cox, who not only starred and was nominated for an Emmy for her role as Sophia in Orange Is the New Black, but she has also been featured on the cover of Time magazine, met US President Barack Obama, and lit the Empire State Building purple for Spirit Day, an annual event to combat LGBT bullying.
More recently, US gay magazine The Advocate listed her as one its nine finalists for Person of the Year, a title — along with a Hitler-esque front cover — that was given to Russian President Vladimir Putin.