• Monday , 19 February 2018

The 2nd Annual Rad Awards Honored the Raddest Women in Philly

Photos, story by Jill Beckel

The 2nd Annual Rad Awards event was the place to be if you wanted to hang out with some seriously smart, cool chicks (and dudes) all night. The event was held on a cool spring night Tuesday, May 3rd at Stratus Lounge. Everyone was dressed in their most fashionable attire and ready to mix and mingle. Stratus staff served up some tasty light bites, gin cocktails and Prosecco.

According to their website, Rad Girls is “a celebration of spirited women who are constantly achieving, innovating, and inspiring. It is an ongoing conversation between empowered women. Let’s celebrate success. Most importantly, Rad Girls is about collaboration. It is about making sure that we actively light one another’s torches because we burn brighter together.”

Everyone got quiet once the awards began as the founder of Rad-Girls.com, Leah Kauffman, took the stage. Kauffman is a media executive living in Philadelphia. In her spare time, she interviews successful female entrepreneurs for her website, which she uses as a storytelling platform for inspiring professional women. She is one very rad woman herself and has been included in Philly Magazine’s ‘76 People to Watch’, was #66 on Blender’s Hot List, and MSN named the “Obama Girl” as one of 11 Most Influential Women in the world.

Each award was given by a different presenter who gave a quick description of what the award was celebrating. The award winners brought lots of family and friends in tow for support and the air quickly filled with loud applause and cheers.

One winner who stood out was Marley Dias who won “Educator of the Year.” At just 11 years old, she was also the youngest award winner. Marley noticed that none of the books she was reading in school had black girls as the main character. Determined to find books with relatable heroes, she set a goal of collecting 1,000 books about black girls by the beginning of February 2016 and with this goal, #1000blackgirlbooks was born. She has far exceeded her goal with almost 4,000 books and counting! Next, she wants to set up a black girls book club and pressure school districts to revise which books are required for students to read.


Everyone mixed and mingled with some freshly made gin cocktails, Prosecco, and light bites as they arrived at Stratus.


Friends gathered on this cool, spring evening.


Laughs and laughter were heard all around.


Stratus Lounge quickly became packed!


Philadelphia Style magazine was a sponsor of the night.


Good drinks with friends before the awards began.


Lots of smiles were seen and laughs heard throughout the night.


The bar area was filled all night too.


Catching up with friends while making new ones.


Philadelphia Style magazine displayed a photo backdrop area for anyone who wanted their photo taken.


The founder of Rad-Girls.com, Leah Kauffman, took the stage to open the awards.


Presenting the first award.

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Rad Guy Of The Year award-winner Dr. Stephen Tang was the only male who received an award – he must be one rad guy!

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Everyone listened closely as the award winners were revealed.

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The crowd politely listened throughout the awards.

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Amberella gracefully accepted the Artist of the Year award.

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Activist of The Year: Kristin Schwab giving a short acceptance speech.


The youngest award winner, Marley Dias, received Educator Of The Year.



Connector of The Year Corinne Warnshuis accepting her award.


Leah was a great MC all night.


A full list of the 2016 winners:

Technologist Of The Year: Kara Lindstrom

Designer of The Year: Shophouse Design

Artist Of The Year: Amberella

Nonprofit Of The Year: Yael Lehmann

Educator Of The Year: Marley Dias

Product Of The Year: Courtney Apple

Connector Of The Year: Corinne Warnshuis

Innovator Of The Year: Yasmine Mustafa

Storyteller Of The Year: Joy Manning and Marisa McClellan

Entrepreneur Of The Year: Elena Brennan

Activists of The Year: Kristin Schwab

Rad Guy Of The Year: Dr. Stephen Tang

Rad Girl Of The Year: Danielle Cohn

Congratulations to all of the Rad winners and nominees this year! Keep on being rad. Until next year…

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