Powerful and influential women from all walks of life smiled and hugged at the 2018 Glamour Women of the Year Awards on Monday, but the devastating wildfires on the other side of the country were on a lot of minds.
Actress Alicia Silverstone had firsthand knowledge of how devastating the fires are. "I know a lot of people who were affected and evacuated and some are still holding ground and not leaving. It's really bad," she said.
"This is happening because we have a problem: global warming, and we must address it. We've been talking about this for a very long time. Brilliant scientists have been talking about this for a very long time. We have a very short window where we can make change so must do it."
The awards — celebrating "game changers, rule breakers and trailblazers" — included honorees such as Chrissy Teigen, Janelle Monae, Emma Gonzalez and Aly Raisman, as well as presenters such as Claire Danes, John Legend, Lupita Nyong'o and Padma Lakshmi.
MJ Rodriguez, who presented Monae's award, said being around so many strong women was encouraging. "I get to be around women who have implemented so much change in the world, not only through their art, but through their works, their action," Rodriqguez said. "So, to be around strong women like that, it makes me feel like I'm doing something right."
Another woman getting high praise, although not in attendance, was former first lady Michelle Obama. Monae said she can't wait to read her new memoir, Becoming.
"I'm so excited about it. I've already preordered my copy," Monae said. "She's a phenomenal woman, whether she's writing a book or just talking to her one on one privately. She's exceptional and I'm so proud of her."
But the wildfires came up again and again, with some attendees saying the flames are part of a larger issue — global warming.
"So many people have lost their homes and it is climate change. It's a problem," said actress Andie MacDowell. "And until we start accepting and exploring that and what are we going to do, we're not going to solve the problem."