Debbie Allen won one of the highest accolades of the evening. The five-time Emmy Award winner accepted the Governor’s Award for her television and stage accomplishments. Known for her long resume as a director on several shows such as A different world, Everyone hates Chris and Grey’s Anatomy, where she also plays, she became moved by accepting the award and celebrating the ones she brought with her.
“It took a lot of courage to be the only woman in the room on multiple occasions,” said Allen, 71, as she wiped away tears. “A lot of courage and creativity, struggle and faith to believe that I could go on. And I have and have brought a lot of people with me.
RELATED: 10 things you didn’t know about Debbie Allen
On hand to celebrate the occasion both in person and virtually were Grey’s Anatomy stars Jesse williams and Ellen Pompeo, Ava Du Vernay, Jada pinkett Black-smith, King Gayle, Michael douglas and Dolly parton.
Allen is also the recipient of a Tony Award, multiple NAACP Image Awards, and a Golden Globe, and is the founder of the Debbie Allen Dance Academy. She then thanked her fellow producer Shonda rhime, the late NBA superstar Kobe bryant, legendary emperor of music Quincy Jones and her family – including her husband Norm nixon.
RELATED: At 70, legendary Debbie Allen just wants to be comfortable and that’s why she designs her own shoes
Before leaving the stage, she conveyed an important message for the future and for women: “May this moment resonate with women in this country and around the world. From Texas to Afghanistan. Let them know.
“And also with young people who do not have a vote, who cannot even get vaccinated, they inherit the world that we leave to them,” she continued. “It’s time for you to claim your power, claim your voice, sing your song, tell your story. It will make us a better place. Your turn.”