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Black Tie International:
Center for Reproductive Rights Fifth Annual Gala
Photos by:  Getty Images
Dawn Porter, Kavita Ramdas, Isabel Allende, Nancy Northup, John Oliver
Dawn Porter, Kavita Ramdas, Isabel Allende, Nancy Northup, John Oliver


Center For Reproductive Rights Fifth Annual Gala
Raises Over $1 Million and Honors Renowned Author Isabel Allende and Documentary Filmmaker Dawn Porter  

Presenters Included Host of HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, John Oliver,
 and Ford Foundation’s Kavita Ramdas Along with Dozens of Local Leaders and Community Activists


   Nancy Northup, Amy Hagstrom-Miller, Stephanie Toti
   Nancy Northup, Amy Hagstrom-Miller, Stephanie Toti

New York, NY (October 26, 2016) - Last night, Center for Reproductive Rights, the only global legal advocacy organization dedicated exclusively to advancing and defending reproductive rights, hosted their fifth Annual Gala Celebration at Jazz at Lincoln Center in Manhattan. The Center honored renowned Chilean author Isabel Allende, a feminist force in Latin America’s male-dominated literary world, for her work to empower women and children worldwide, as well as documentary filmmaker Dawn Porter for shedding light on the impact of restrictive abortion clinic regulations across the South in her latest film “Trapped,” which won the Special Jury Award for Social Impact Filmmaking at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.  


The evening kicked off with a red carpet photoshoot with notable attendees such as champions of the recent Texas Supreme Court ruling which struck down two parts of a controversial anti-abortion, Stephanie Toti, senior counsel for the Center for Reproductive Rights and Amy Hagstrom Miller, chief executive officer and founder of Whole Woman's Health and lead plaintiff in the case. The elaborate cocktail reception segued into the program, in which John Oliver, Peabody award-winning host of HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, introduced Dawn Porter and reaffirmed his commitment to women’s rights and feminist issues, having popularized Porter’s documentary film on his show and bringing awareness to his viewers.


Senior Advisor on Global Strategy for the Ford Foundation and former president and chief executive officer of Global Fund for Women, Kavita Ramdas, introduced honoree Isabel Allende, calling her a “proud feminist who detests the relentless patronizing, discrimination and devaluation of women in the world.” Allende delivered heartfelt, personal remarks, recalling growing up in Chile and having “always defied male authority,” which grew her into the advocate she is today, “I was a feminist before the word even existed in Chile!”


Nancy Northup, president and chief executive officer, Center for Reproductive Rights said, “at the heart of all progress towards our vision for reproductive rights globally is someone willing to stand up and challenge an unjust law. This year’s gala celebrates the brave plaintiffs, great lawyers, pro bono support, coalition partners and generous donors who support and make possible our victories worldwide.”


The event raised over $1 million, including the $100,000 Espíritu Award from the Isabel Allende Foundation, and drew a crowd of over 500 in celebration of the Center’s groundbreaking work in defending the lives and rights of women worldwide.  Recent victories in women’s rights across the globe include the U.S. Supreme Court decision that protects abortion access for the women of Texas; the new amendment introduced in El Salvador to decriminalize abortion; and the groundbreaking United Nations ruling in Ireland that recognizes that the criminalization of abortion violated a woman’s human rights.


The Center - a legal innovator seeking to fundamentally transform the landscape of reproductive health and rights worldwide - envisions a world where every woman participates with full dignity as an equal member of society. The Center has worked for nearly 25 years to define legal advocacy for reproductive rights through victories in regional, federal, and local Courts around the world, as well as at the United Nations.


For more information on Center for Reproductive Rights, please visit


# # #


Founded in 1992, the Center for Reproductive Rights is a global legal advocacy organization that fights to ensure reproductive rights are guaranteed in law as fundamental human rights. With expertise in both U.S. constitutional and international human rights law, the Center fights to ensure strong legal protections for the full range of reproductive rights and affordable and unhindered access to the full range of reproductive health care.


Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/

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