GIFF will host the 2020 Changemaker Gala on Thursday, April 30th, with a Meet&Greet cocktail reception at Betteridge from 6 to 8 p.m. followed by a black tie awards dinner at L’Escale from 8:00 to 10:30 p.m. This prestigious event honors humanitarians for using their voices for positive social change. To attend, visit the GIFF Box Office and purchase one of the VIP Passes. Learn more about our past honorees below.
Eva Longoria Bastón is an award-winning actor, producer, director, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. Eva is a committed advocate for gender equality and the representation of women and people of color in the entertainment industry. She is a co-founder of the Time’s Up movement. She founded the Eva Longoria Foundation in 2012 to help Latinas build better futures for themselves and their families through education and entrepreneurship. Her entrepreneurial activities include serving as a Global Brand Ambassador for L’Oreal Paris, CEO of UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, fragrances EVA and EVAmour, a New York Times-bestselling cookbook Eva’s Kitchen, and a home collection line with JCPenney. Eva received her master’s degree in Chicano Studies from California State University, Northridge, writing her thesis on “Success STEMS from Diversity: The Value of Latinas in STEM Careers.
Bobby Walker, Jr. is CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Greenwich. After graduating from Williams in 1995, Mr. Walker returned to his Texas home at St. Mark’s as a teacher, coach and administrator. After five years as Dean at McDonogh School in MD, he and his wife became Middle School Heads in Southwestern Fairfield County. He held that position at King Low Heywood Thomas in Stamford for 9 years. His wife is the current Head of Middle School at Greenwich Academy. In July 2014, Mr. Walker accepted the role of CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Greenwich. This move has allowed him to continue to help young people, some of whom come from backgrounds similar to his, and who are all seeking ways to access life’s greatest opportunities.
Nominated for several Golden Globe and Emmy awards, Ashley Judd received the “Changemaker Award” for her work as the Global Goodwill Ambassador with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). As a feminist and social justice humanitarian, Ashley has been working internationally, with NGO’s, grass roots organizations, governments, and supranational bodies since 2004. In 2018 Ashley was named one of TIME Magazine’s Person of The Year for her activism and leadership in the feminist movement.
Duncan Edwards has been a leader in our educational community and is the current Executive Director for Waterside School. “The School represents courage, determination, and resolve”, Edwards said. Waterside conceived as a model for future efforts, is an independent school in Stamford, CT, serving children and families regardless of limitations in income or circumstances. The School empowers its students with the knowledge, skills and virtues required to enable them to excel as students. GIFF was humbled to honor Duncan Edwards as our 2018 Community Changemaker.
Academy Award-winning actress Renée Zellweger received the “Changemaker Award” for her leadership and support in the search for effective treatments and a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), in honor of her dear friend Nanci Ryder, veteran publicist and co-founder of BWR Public Relations who was diagnosed in 2014, as well as her work with the SIMS Foundation, a charitable foundation dedicated to support those in the Austin music industry, suffering from depression and mental health illnesses.
Humanitarian, maternal health advocate and model Christy Turlington Burns received the “Changemaker Award” for her work as Founder & CEO of Every Mother Counts, an organization working toward making pregnancy and childbirth safe for every mother, everywhere. The organization is dedicated to raising awareness about the global maternal health crisis and links mothers to providers of essential care, by addressing these three barriers to maternal health: transportation, education, and supplies.
Andrew Niblock is a leader in the educational community and is the current head of the lower school at Greenwich Country Day School. He has inspired thousands of students and instilled in them a love of learning that will last throughout their lives. Andrew was recently diagnosed with ALS and is continuing to inspire his students and the entire community. Andrew has become a committed advocate for the fight against ALS and has demonstrated strength and grace as he confronts this disease. GIFF is humbled to honor Andrew Niblock as our 2017 Community Changemaker.
Accepted the Changemaker Award on behalf of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Accepted the Changemaker Award on behalf of her work and advocacy for Girl Rising.
Accepted the Changemaker Award for founding the Rainforest Fund.
Accepted the Changemaker Award for serving as a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
Accepted the Changemaker Award for her work with UNICEF.