Tavi Gevinson - writer, magazine editor, actress.
Tavi Gevinson has been an inspiration since she was 12, when she ran her own fashion blog called Style Rookie. When I was 12, I was deep in the throes of Newsies fanfiction, getting into fights with anyone who dare tell me my stories were trash.
Gevinson, at 12, was flouring in the blogosphere. Out of Style Rookie grew Rookie Mag, a publication for teenage girls where Gevinson serves as the editor-in-chief.
She is amazing, to say the least. To use the word "amazing" sounds cliche, but I can't really think of anything else.
I like following Gevinson on social media because every time she posts something I feel smarter for reading and consuming whatever she uploads. She’s given TED talks, she’s starred on Broadway, she’s interviewed Malala Yousafzai (a piece that is an absolute must-read).
But what I love most about Gevinson is that she’s given a platform for teenage girls to express themselves. She’s fostered a beautiful community of young women who need one another; who empower one another to speak loudly when so many people tell them to quiet down.
Amandla Stenberg - actress and singer.
When I realized that Amandla Stenberg is the actress who plays Rue in The Hunger Games, I was shook. Ever since that big screen debut, Stenberg carved a place for herself in Hollywood.
Along with Zendaya, she appeared in Beyoncé’s visual album, Lemonade, as well as played romantic lead in the young adult flick, Everything, Everything.
Next up, Stenberg will play the lead role in Angie Thomas' best-selling novel, "The Hate U Give."
As Vogue magazine put it, Stenberg is a “voice for the future.”
For a high school project, Stenberg made a video called, “Don’t Cash Crop My Cornrows” and it subsequently went viral. At the end of the video, Stenberg asks,”What would America be like if we loved black people as much as we love black culture?”
She also gave a talk for Oprah’s SuperSoul Session, and the title of Stenberg’s piece was called “My Authenticity Is My Activism.”
Marsai Martin - actress and producer.
Marsai Martin is just 13-years-old. Repeat: Marsai Martin is just 13-years-old.
I need to repeat this fact because it’s so astounding. Martin currently plays Diane on Black-ish. Even though she’s the age of an 8th grader, she’s nowhere near being your average tween.