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28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Arrivals

Source: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin / Getty

Kerry Washington has been included in TIME’s 12 Women of The Year issue, an honor the actress says she’s “so beyond grateful” for.
But her acting chops isn’t the reason that the 45-year-old entertainer is featured in the magazine. It’s her work as an activist instead, something she’s been doing way longer than she’s been on our television screens.

The Emmy-winning producer told the magazine that she was inspired to take her activism to another level after her role of Olivia Pope in the ABC thriller, Scandal.
‘I woke up the morning after the election in 2016, and Olivia Pope was trending. I was confronted with all these people saying, “Olivia Pope, you have to fix this.” “Olivia Pope, save the day,”‘ Kerry told the mag.

‘And while I’m honored at the cultural impact she’s had, we don’t fix our democracy by believing in a fictional character. We take care of our country by showing up and participating in democracy. I thought, “How do I highlight the real Olivia Popes?” I’m talking about the Stacey Abrams of the world or Tram Nguyen, who is a community-based organizer who runs New Virginia Majority.’

Kerry is now one of the founding members of the Time’s Up organization, explaining how it was a real turning point for her and her career.  “It’s important we continue to show up for other women. We still have so much work to do to support survivors of harassment, abuse, and assault.”

She continued, “This stuff takes time. When you talk about the legacy of racism in this country, it’s been this way for hundreds of years – we’re not going to shift it over one woke summer. Misogyny has been at the root of how we’ve operated for so many centuries. It’s not going to shift with one election. We have to stay at it.”

Read Kerry’s full interview here.

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Kerry Washington Is ‘Beyond Grateful’ To Be On TIME’s Women Of The Year List  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com