“As a global media leader, philanthropist, producer and actress, she has created an unparalleled connection with people around the world, making her one of the most respected and admired figures today,” HFPA President Meher Tatna said in a statement.
“For generations, Oprah has celebrated strong female characters on and off screen, and has been a role model for women and young girls for decades. Holding titles such as Chairman, CEO and Founder, Oprah is one of the most influential women of our time, and this honor is well deserved,” Tatna concluded.
Previous DeMille award winners include Audrey Hepburn, Barbra Streisand, Denzel Washington, George Clooney, Harrison Ford, Sidney Poitier, Lucille Ball, Martin Scorsese and last year’s honoree Meryl Streep.
Winfrey’s achievements on the big and small screen are numerous, from the award-winning talk show “The Oprah Winfrey Show” to her Oscar nominated turn in Steven Spielberg’s “The Color Purple.”
Winfrey is also Chairman and CEO of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, the founder of O, The Oprah Magazine and oversees Harpo Films.
Her other acting credits include “Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” the recent HBO series “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” and producing and starring in Ava DuVernay’s “Selma.” Winfrey also stars in Disney’s “Wrinkle in Time” adaptation from DuVernay this coming March.
A noted philanthropist, this year marks the 10th anniversary of The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa.
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