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.

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BRILLIANT 2018

AHMAD RAMADAN
AHMAD RAMADAN

Novelist, The Clothesline Swing

ELISA PADILLA
ELISA PADILLA

Chief Marketing Officer, Brooklyn Nets

PARVEZ SHARMA
PARVEZ SHARMA

Author/Filmmaker, A Sinner In Mecca

REV. KEVIN TAYLOR
REV. KEVIN TAYLOR

Spiritual Icon

RAJIV MOHABIR
RAJIV MOHABIR

Poet

SAM PARK
SAM PARK

State Representative, Georgia

SRI RAO
SRI RAO

Producer and Cookbook Innovator

SHAWN SHORT
SHAWN SHORT

Artistic Director, Dissonance Dance

IQUAIL SHAHEED
IQUAIL SHAHEED

Artistic Director, Dance Iquail

ZEKE THOMAS
ZEKE THOMAS

Activist and Survivor