meagan good (at rising stars)

*Female celebrities such as Meagan Good, Dawnn Lewis and Nina Parker arrived at the empowHER Institutes “Rising Star Awards” red carpet at the Taglyan Complex in Hollywood on Thursday, April 23.

The event consisted of a cocktail hour, dinner, live entertainment and an auction. The fundraiser also honored outstanding female leaders in multiple industries from the Arts and Public Service, to Business.

Betty LaMarr who is the CEO of EmpowHER founded the organization after becoming a teenage mother. The non-profit organization aims to increase high school graduation rates for females, especially pregnant students.

LaMarr expressed her opinions about shows that televise teenage pregnancy such as “Teen Mom” and “16 and Pregnant.”

“I think socially it makes girl’s think that it’s okay,” she said. “We’re not saying that you have to be perfect but we’re saying make a conscious choice about what you’re doing and don’t be influenced by TV shows like “Teen Mom” and “16 & Pregnant.”

Actress Meagan Good felt that shows that broadcast pregnancy could both promote and prevent it.

“I made my sister watch that show…Is that really the life that you want?” she told her sister. “At the same token we live in a day and age where everybody wants to be famous and are willing to do whatever it takes to have an opportunity at that.”

Lewis, who is a Grammy award winning singer and actress, most notable for her role as Jaleesa Vinson-Taylor in “A Different World,” spoke on what she looks for in a rising star. She described it with one word, “character.”

“It’s your character I believe that helps to give you longevitity, that gives you opportunity, that helps the blessing go beyond you to actually help and empower somebody else,” she said. “That’s the difference between a gig and a career.”

For more information on EmpowHer, visit empowher.org or call 310-574-9181.

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