Laverne Cox has become the face of one of the biggest equality stories of 2014. Her empathetic portrayal of Sophia Burset on the Netflix original series Orange Is the New Black has made her the first openly transgender person to be nominated for an Emmyand landed her on the cover of Time magazine. She's producing a documentary on CeCe McDonald, a transgender woman who, after defending herself from an attack, spent 19 months in prison, as well as a documentary for MTV. Glamour is proud to honor Cox as a 2014 Woman of the Year. She's profiled in Glamour's December issue, on newsstands nationwide on November 11 and available now digitally at Glamour.com/app .
She has now been named among Glamour's Women of the Year.
Lesbian talkshow host Robin Roberts is also on the list. Glamour's 24th annual Women of the Year Awards will take place in New York City on November 10. See the full list at the link: ww.glamour.com/inspired/women-of-the-year .
link: ww.glamour.com/inspired/women-of-the-year .
Cox on her career before landing the role of Sophia Burset on Orange Is the New Black:
"I played hookers a lot. That was the scope of what was available for trans actors. When I got the [OITNB] script, I was like, OK, this is what I've waited for my whole careerI need to kill it."
Cox on her calling to advocate for the transgender communit:
"I looked around at the lives of so many trans folkslives that are often in danger. The homicide rate is disproportionately high among trans people. The rate of bullying is disproportionately high. Forty-one percent of all trans people have attempted suicide, compared to 4.6 percent of the rest of the population."
Cox on her decision to transition:
"It was a very painful process. I had a nervous breakdown. My career was going nowhere; I shaved off my Beyonce-circa-Destiny's Child long hair, bought boys' clothes, and tried to be 'normal.' I was so unhappy and thought, I either have to transition or I have to kill myself."
Cox on her advocacy:
"When we get to know people as people, then all the misconceptions that we might have about folks who are different form us get knocked away. And I think that's what's happening with this character. So much of the year I've had is historic, but this is a moment that is bigger than me. I meet people who say that my role has given them the courage to say, 'This is who I am' and 'I can transition and be successful and to be out as a trans person." …We have this internal compass of the truth inside of us. And that is our job, really, to quiet all this noise around us and listen to that."
Cox on her words to live by:
"There are lessons in everything. The bad, the good. Our job is to listen, and to continue to learn, so that maybe we get better at this. Maybe get better at life."
Read Cox's feature on Glamour.com: glmr.me/1xeQXKK or pick up the December issue.