By Jack Barnes

Kicking off Oscar weekend with style and grace, ESSENCE celebrated four remarkable Hollywood artist-activists during its 12th annual “BLACK WOMEN IN HOLLYWOOD AWARDS,” held Thursday, February 21, 2019, at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA. The luncheon, themed “Art + Activism,” was hosted by Grammy Award-Winning singer and actress, Kelly Rowland; and honored actress and comedian Regina Hall (Black Women in Hollywood Award Recipient); actress/singer and author Jenifer Lewis (Black Women in Hollywood Award Recipient); actress Amandla Stenberg (Black Women in Hollywood Award Recipient) and actress KiKi Layne (Ford Spotlight Award Recipient)

-Leon Bennett/Getty Images for Essence
-Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Essence
-Rich Polk/Getty Images for Essence
-Aaron Thornton/Getty Images for Essence

Regina King, Sanaa LathanElaine Welteroth, Loretta Devine and Sheryl Lee Ralph were presenters and Amber Riley performed two beautiful covers of Stephanie Mills’ “Home” and Aretha Franklin’s “Natural Woman.”
The exclusive pre-Oscar event was abuzz with Hollywood Black excellence from actresses to musicians, executives, beauty influencers and more. These A-list guests mingled during a cocktail reception prior to entering the grand ballroom for the ceremonial luncheon.  Among the elite talents present were:
AJ Johnson | Actress/Influencer
Algee Smith | Actor, The Hate U Give
Alissa Ashley | Beauty/Lifestyle Influencer
Angela Bassett | Former Honoree
Angela Rye | Political Commentator
Anna Diop | Actress
Antoinette Robertson | Actress, Dear White People
Ashley Blaine Featherson | Netflix, Dear White People
Ava DuVernay | Former Honoree
Bevy Smith | Host, Page Six
Bianca Lawson | Actress, Pretty Little Liars
Billy Porter | Actor, Pose/Tony Award winner
Bozoma Saint John | Chief Brand Officier, Endeavor
Cathy Hughes | Chairperson and Founder, TV One
CCH Pounder | Actress, NCIS: New Orleans
Chandler Kinney | Actress, Lethal Weapon
Charles King | CEO, MACRO
Chloe X Halle | R&B Duo
Cynthia Erivo | Singer and Actress, Widows
DJ ‘Shangela’ Pierce | Actor, A Star Is Born
Dawn-Lyen Gardner | Actress, Queen Sugar
DeWanda Wise | Actress, She’s Gotta Have It
Doralys Britto | Beauty/Lifestyle Influencer
Edwina Findley Dickerson | Actress, If Loving You Is Wrong
Eva Marcille | Model
Iyanla Vanzant | Inspirational Speaker, Iyanla: Fix My Life
Janet Mock | Producer, Pose
Jimmy Jean-Louis | Actor, Heroes
June Ambrose | Stylist, Influencer
Kandi Burruss | Singer/ Television Personality
Kirby Howell Baptiste | Actress, Barry
Kofi Siriboe | Actor, Queen Sugar
Kylie Bunbury | Actress/Netflix
Lakeith Stanfield | Actor, Sorry to Bother You, Atlanta
Laura Harrier | Actress, BlacKkKlansman
Logan Browning | Actress, Dear White People
Loni Love | Host, The Real
Loretta DeVine | Former Honoree
Lorraine Toussaint | Actress, Orange Is the New Black
Luvvie Ajayi | Award winning Author and Speaker
Marsai Martin | Actress, Blackish
Maxine Waters | Congresswoman
Meagan Good | Actress
Melissa De Sousa | Actress, Best Man
Michele Weaver | Actress, Love Is
Nafessa Williams | Actress, This Is Us
Nyakim Gatwech | Model
Octavia Spencer | Former Honoree
Robin Thede | Tv Host, Comedian, Writer
Robin Givens | Actress, Riverdale
Russell Hornsby | Actor, The Hate U Give
Ryan Michelle Bathe | Actress, First Wives Club Show
Salli Richardson-Whitfield | Director, Queen Sugar
Sean Combs | Entrepreneur
Sherri Shepherd | Comedic Actress
Sheryl Lee Ralph | Activist and Actress
Sir John Barnett | Make Up Artist/Influencer
Skai Jackson | Actress, Jessie
Spike Lee | Film Director, BlacKkKlansman
Stacey King | Head of Branding, MACRO
Stephan James | Actor, If Beale Street Could Talk
Tarana Burke | #MeToo founder
Tai Beauchamp| Influencer
Tati Gabrielle | Actress, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
Terence Blanchard | Composer, Oscar Nom
Tina Knowles-Lawson | Fashion Designer/ Philanthropist
Tonya Lewis Lee | Producer
Tracy Christian | Talent Agent, TCA Mgmt.
Trevor Jackson | Actor, Grownish
Vanessa Bell Calloway | Actress, Saints & Sinners
Will Catlett | Actor, Love Is
Winston Duke | Actor, Black Panther
Yaya Dacosta | Actress
Yvonne Orji | Actress, Insecure
Zoe Renee | Actress, The Quad
The ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Awards is presented by The Ford Motor Company and sponsored by AT&T, L’Oréal Paris, Walmart, Geico, and Warner Bros.
About ESSENCE Communications Inc.
ESSENCE Communications is the number one media, technology and commerce company serving Black women and inspires a global audience of more than 17 million through diverse storytelling and immersive original content. With a multi-platform presence in publishing, experiential and online, ESSENCE encompasses its signature magazine; digital, video and social platforms; television specials; books; as well as live events, including Black Women in Music, Black Women in Hollywood, Street Style and the ESSENCE Festival. Essence Communications is owned by Essence Ventures, an independent Black-owned, technology-driven company focused on merging content, community and commerce to meet the evolving cultural and lifestyle needs of people of color.

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I Caught U Slippin

I have a passion for blogging about what's trending in Hip Hop, R&B, and Celebrity Entertainment. I'm a huge sports fan; my favorite teams are The NY Knicks & NY Jets. I also enjoy spending time with family, and working hard as hard work pays off.

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