Beverly Bond, founder and CEO of the award-winning empowerment brand Black Girls Rock! has announced the Black Girls Rock! 15th -anniversary fundraising gala, streaming June 18 on the newly launched BGR!TV network. The virtual gala, powered by Microsoft, will be an illustrious celebration of black girl magic featuring phenomenal musical performances by the iconic queen of funk Chaka Khan, and Grammy-nominated virtuosos Alice Smith and Maimouna Youssef, a.k.a. MuMu Fresh; D.C.'s all-woman go-go band BELA DONA; Grammy Award-winning gospel singer Tasha Cobbs Leonard; celebrity DJ Aktive; and an exclusive collaboration with Chaka Khan and DEF LEPPARD lead guitarist Phil Collen. The event will be hosted by esteemed actress Tatyana Ali and hip-hop icon MC Lyte, with appearances by acclaimed actor Wood Harris, Grammy Award-winning artist Estelle, and more.
"Fifteen years ago, I created Black Girls Rock! to honor black women and to counter societal norms that too often marginalize our voices, images, and contributions," said Bond. "Black Girls Rock! triggered a seismic paradigm shift that exponentially elevated the stories, leadership, accomplishments, and inclusion of women of color. I am humbled by the tremendous global impact this movement has made in the lives of millions of women and girls.
"After fifteen years of advocating for black women's visibility and power, it's a fitting evolution to launch our own OTT network, BGR!TV. Owning our narrative whilst fostering black economic empowerment and equity is critical for our liberation. As the proud owner of this new media platform, I'm now able to scale my efforts to create content that reflects our audience and provide more opportunities for content creators and storytellers.
"I'm grateful to Microsoft for leading by example in its support of black women-owned businesses. Their sponsorship of this year's fundraising gala is a testament to how allyship looks in action. Our 15-year anniversary fundraising gala is headlined by the incomparable Chaka Khan and many other amazing artists will be joining us to punctuate this momentous milestone."
Chaka Khan said: "It is an honor to support Beverly Bond and this amazing organization and movement that she has built. I am so excited to headline Black Girls Rock!'s 15-year anniversary fundraising gala during the launch of BGR!TV, which will continue to be an inspiration to all generations, lifting legends, and making sure that black women's enormous contributions to society are acknowledged."
As part of a multi-year strategic partnership with Black Girls Rock!, Microsoft is also extending fundraising support through Give With Bing, an initiative with the Microsoft Rewards program. Through Give With Bing, fans and followers of Black Girls Rock! can earn Microsoft Rewards points by searching on Microsoft Bing. These points can then be donated to Black Girls Rock! via Give With Bing. And it doesn’t stop with that — all funds raised for Black Girls Rock! through Microsoft Rewards will be matched through June 30, 2021. Start donating here: here.
"We're excited to partner with Black Girls Rock! to present their 15-year anniversary fundraising gala, and to support their direct service and advocacy initiatives by enabling donations through our Give With Bing program," said Jodi Ribas, corporate vice-president at Microsoft Bing. "Supporters can also make monthly donations to Black Girls Rock! using their Microsoft Rewards points, simply by searching on Bing."
The Black Girls Rock! 15th-anniversary fundraising gala will benefit the advocacy and philanthropic work that Black Girls Rock! continues to pioneer via its 501(c)(3) programs and initiatives. Tickets for the virtual gala can be purchased online at www.blackgirlsrock.com.