Kate Hudson at 27th Annual Beat the Odds Awards ceremony
The celebration honored five Los Angeles high school “stars” – Jackie, Ana, Jerry, Mey, and Ja’Nay – in recognition of their excellence in academic achievement, despite the overwhelming obstacles that stand in their way.
The inspiring evening was hosted by Children’s Defense Fund President Marian Wright Edelman, along with support from co-chairs Jurnee Smollett-Bell & Josiah Bell, Carol & Frank Biondi, Ruth-Ann Huvane, Kevin Huvane, Katie Sharer & Mark Mullen, Liza & Conan O'Brien, and Cdf-ca Executive Director Shimica Gaskins. O’Brien served as the night’s emcee, with co-chair Smollett-Bell pulling double duty as a presenter during the program. She was joined by additional special guests including presenters Kate Hudson, Gabourey Sidibe, Jussie Smollett, Chiké Okonkwo, and Alfre Woodard,