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Ashley Judd            

Actress, Activist & Humanitarian

Ashley Judd is well known for dexterously starring in both box office hits and for turning in unforgettable performances in fine independent films. From her debut in Sundance Film Festival grand jury prize winner, "Ruby In Paradise" to "Where the Heart Is," her films tell very personal stories - which is exactly what Judd does when she is not making movies.

Judd is a feminist social justice humanitarian. She has been working internationally with NGO’S, grass roots organizations, governments, and supranational bodies since 2004. Presently, she serves as Global Goodwill Ambassador for UNFPA, is the Global Ambassador for Population Services International, and also for Polaris Project. She serves on the Advisory Boards of International Center for Research on Women, Apne Aap Worldwide, and Demand Abolition. She is Chairperson of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project: Curbing Abuse, Expanding Freedom.

Judd has also served as a board member for Population Services International (PSI) and as Global Ambassador for YouthAIDS. Judd speaks on behalf of those who cannot speak for themselves. She is a graduate of the University of Kentucky, and in 2010, earned an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Her paper, "Gender Violence, Law and Social Justice" won the Dean’s Scholar Award at Harvard Law School.

Judd has traveled the world to do international public health work on all fronts – maternal health, child survival, human rights, family planning, STD and HIV prevention, and malaria prevention and treatment. She has experienced firsthand the connection between poverty, illness and gender inequality and how that sets up the pain and degradation that is sex and labor slavery (on which she testified before the General Assembly of the United Nations). She is also passionate about the environment. An eighth generation Kentuckian, she is an outspoken critic of mountaintop removal coal mining. A proponent of a "green collar" economy, Judd is committed to helping find innovative renewable energy solutions.

She frequently serves as an expert panelist at international conferences, is a sought after public speaker and is a widely published OpEd author, with a diverse and unique social media presence. She has spoken at many prestigious conferences around the world, including the London School of Economics' Family Planning Summit, sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She also hosted a talk with President Clinton on the work of the Clinton Foundation for the London School of Economics. In 2012, Judd spoke on the floor of the Democratic National Convention as the delegate from Tennessee asked to cast the ballots for the party's nominee for president and vice president.

Whether it's on behalf of a patient dying from a preventable illness a world away or on behalf a family struggling to find clean drinking water in Appalachia, Judd is telling the stories of the vulnerable and the at-risk. Judd says, "I don't do it because I'm an actor. I do it because I'm a human being."

Speech Topics


To Tell Their Stories

A glamorous film and stage actress might be the last person you'd expect to be holding the hand of a child in a slum in Mumbaior traveling to Kenya, South Africa, Thailand, Cambodia and India to talk about condom use, hygiene and sanitation, legal empowerment, or access to micro-financing. She might not be who you'd picture visiting with families in Appalachia whose children draw water as black or red because they don't know creek water is supposed to run clear--or who listens to stories of busted unions and miners with chronic health problems. Ashley Judd is such a person.

From horrifying brothels and degrading slums in Third World countries to environmentally ravaged communities here in America, Judd is committed to telling the stories of the people she meets. Far from being a perfect "Mother Teresa-like" figure, Judd has been very open about her own struggles, including depression. She believes that mental illness need not be treated with a sense of secrecy or stigma, and that her own journey has made her an even more effective advocate for others facing their own issues.

"Because I finally faced my past, and realized that where I come from, and what happened to me, and how I participated, is not who I am -- today I can live happy, joyous, and free," says Judd. Judd is an impressive presenter, stunning audiences with information that not only educates, but stirs the spirit. Articulate, passionate, but not without humor, Judd's experiences regarding the human condition are universal principles, applicable to all, whatever their personal creed.

One does not have to travel the world as she does in order to make a difference. Judd shares her experiences and the power one voice has to impact the lives of others. To hear Ashley Judd speak is to be forever moved and inspired to action.

News


Ashley Judd: Women, we are in the fight of our lives

We owe a mighty mountain of gratitude to Justice Ginsburg for leading the way, and now we must move her legacy forward, writes Ashley Judd, even when faced with a Supreme Court nominee who would likely haul us back in time. The smart way to honor Ginsburg now is turn out the vote in massive waves and to vote for Biden and Harris.

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