After being told she’d never be an editorial girl, and subsequently proving “them” wrong—clearly—Ashley Graham continues to be a shining pillar of body positivity. Having just turned 29 on Sunday, the super and new America’s Next Top Model judge announced this morning that she’s one of Glamour’s 2016 Women of the Year.
“Ashley is reshaping how people think about conventional beauty,” said FU's beauty editor-at-large Vincent Oquendo. “She never responds with ‘No,’ it’s always ‘How?’"
Graham, a model, body activist, and inspiration for women everywhere, is in good company: Other honorees include Gwen Stefani (who will cover Glamour’s December issue), Simone Biles, Christine Lagarde, Nadia Murad, Miuccia Prada, Zendaya, “Emily Doe,” the Stanford sexual assault survivor, and Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi, the trio of women who helped to make Black Lives Matter a national political and social movement. Additionally, Bono—yes, that Bono—will be honored as Glamour’s very first Man of the Year.
“It’s so important that fashion starts catching up with size diversity, because it’s about inclusion now,” Graham told FU in a recent interview. “It’s not just about one standard of beauty. It’s not just about representing one type of woman. It’s about representing every type of woman. And that’s even more beautiful than having women conform to what someone tells them beauty is.”
Now in its 27th year, the ceremony, which includes an all-day summit, is slated to take place on November 14 in Los Angeles. Congratulations to all the honorees, and an especially big congratulations to Graham, who reminds us every day to #shattertheceiling, and most importantly, to love ourselves. “In fashion,” she told FU, “everything fades eventually, so if you really love who you are on the inside, the exterior goes along with it.”