Billboard Women In Music Gala Honors Selena Gomez And Mary J. Blige

Billboard held their annual Women in Music event with an incredible gala dinner Thursday at the Ray Dolby Ballroom. Ciara served as host of the evening, welcoming all 2017 honorees.

Selena Gomez took home the main honor of the evening with Billboard’s 2017 Woman of the Year. Gomez choked up as she dedicated the award to her friend Francia Raisa, who earlier this year donated a kidney to Gomez, who struggles with lupus.

“To be honest, I think Francia should be getting this award because she saved my life,” said Gomez on accepting the award. “Honestly, I couldn’t be more grateful for the position I’ve been given in my career from seven to 14 to now. I want people to know I respect the platform that I have so deeply, because I knew that I wanted to be part of something great and I wanted people to feel great.”

Mary J. Blige, who gave an incredible performance in this year’s Mudbound, won the Icon Award. She called the award a “huge responsibility,” explaining that, “when people look up to me, I want them to see my life and have it reflect theirs and understand that if I can make it through everything that I’ve made it through and still making it through, you can do it as well.”

Kelly Clarkson was honored with the Powerhouse Award. And Solange took home the American Express Impact Award.

Other winners included Camila Cabello (Breakthrough Artist), Kehlani (Rule Breaker), Grace VanderWaal (Rising Star), and Julie Greenwald (Executive of the Year). An incredible roster of presenters showed up to award the winners including Nick Cannon, Deb Curtis, Diplo, Elle Fanning, Heidi Klum, Francia Raisa, Taraji P. Henson, Kelly Rowland, and Ed Sheeran.

The dinner was packed with music insiders including Sabrina Carpenter, Daya, FLETCHER, Camila Gallardo, Tori Kelly, Tinashe, ZZ Ward, Diane Warren, Betty Who, and Pharrell Williams. And several of the honorees performed during the event, including Camila Cabello, Kelly Clarkson, Kehlani, and Grace VanderWaal.
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