MARIELLE FRANCO

The assassination of Marielle Franco on the night of March 14, 2018 made her an international symbol of the violence she had spent her life trying to end.  Franco grew up in the favelas, Rio de Janeiro's  shantytowns, and was a teacher and aide before being elected to the city's municipal council in 2016. As a queer black feminist, she was a rarity in Brazilian politics.

Her career battling gender violence, police brutality,  and the racism and grinding poverty that disenfranchises Brazil's non-white majority made her a hero to marginalized groups and a target of the resurgent right-wing.  In national elections months after her murder, the right-wing returned to power, winning the Presidency; at the same time, a number of female black, and queer candidates also stepped forward to claim the space Franco had opened.

BRILLIANT 2018

AHMAD RAMADAN
Novelist, The Clothesline Swing
ELISA PADILLA
Chief Marketing Officer, Brooklyn Nets
PARVEZ SHARMA
Author/Filmmaker, A Sinner In Mecca
REV. KEVIN TAYLOR
Spiritual Icon
RAJIV MOHABIR
Poet
SAM PARK
State Representative, Georgia
SRI RAO
Producer and Cookbook Innovator
SHAWN SHORT
Artistic Director, Dissonance Dance
IQUAIL SHAHEED
Artistic Director, Dance Iquail
ZEKE THOMAS
Activist and Survivor
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Brooklyn, NY 11226

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