CNN host Anderson Cooper will be honored with the presentation of a GLAAD award for openly gay media professionals on the 16th of March at the 24th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in NYC. To make the moment even more special for Cooper, the organization announced yesterday that long-time friend and LGBT supporter Madonna will be presenting the award.
"Madonna has been a passionate spokesperson and long-time supporter of gay rights. She has embraced LGBT people around the world on many occasions," says GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. “From speaking out against bullying to raising support for marriage equality, Madonna has always been one of our community's strongest allies. We are honored to have her stand with GLAAD and Anderson Cooper.” Cooper will be honored with the Vito Russo Award, which is presented to an openly gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender media professional who has made a significant difference in promoting equality.
After years of declining to comment on his personal life and sexual orientation, in July of 2012 Cooper sent an email to Daily Beast blogger Andrew Sullivan and gave him permission to post its contents. In the email Cooper said, “The fact is, I'm gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud.”
It is for his courage in publicly speaking out, and so many other reasons, that Cooper is the recipient of a GLAAD award. "By sharing his own experiences as a gay man, Anderson has reminded millions of Americans that LGBT people are part of their everyday lives and an integral part of our cultural fabric," says Graddick. "He continues to raise the bar and set a new standard for journalists everywhere, and I'm proud to call him a friend."