Latifah narrates a PSA that features former Girl Scouts like Melinda Gates, Karlie Kloss, Susan Wojcicki and Sen. Tammy Duckworth
The Girl Scouts of the USA just got endorsed by hip hop royalty.
Queen Latifah narrates a new PSA for the female-focused scouting organization that highlights the high-profile alum who’ve broken barriers in journalism, sports, science, politics and entertainment.
“Not just making our mark but making a difference — now that’s a job for a Girl Scout,” the “U.N.I.T.Y.” rapper says in a voiceover for the “Lifetime of Leadership” video released Monday night.
The PSA spotlights former Girl Scouts who have grown into household names, including philanthropist Melinda Gates; athletes Venus Williams and Jackie Joyner-Kersee; Sen. Tammy Duckworth and Sen. Susan Collins; YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki; award-winning journalists Barbara Walters and Katie Couric; supermodel and STEM entrepreneur Karlie Kloss; and entertainers Sheryl Crow, Céline Dion, Dakota Fanning, Tyra Banks and Latifah, herself, among many more.
“Girl Scouts: Preparing girls for a lifetime of leadership,” Latifah concludes in girl-power spot — which comes on the heels of the Boy Scouts of America luring potential Girl Scout recruits away by opening its ranks to young women, as well. The BSA announced earlier this month that the 108-year-old organization is renaming its program for kids ages 11 to 17 to be Scouts BSA (The parent organization will remain the Boy Scouts of America), and packs will begin welcoming girls by next February. And it rolled out a new ad campaign of its own featuring male and female scouts doing outdoor activities like kayaking together, under the tagline “Scout Me In.”
The Girl Scouts of the USA has responded by creating new badges that focus on STEM achievements and outdoor activities, and citing research that girls learn best in all-girl, girl-led and girl-friendly environments, as well as Latifah’s timely new spot.
“Girl Scouts is the premier leadership development organization for girls,” Sylvia Acevedo, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA, previously told Moneyish in a statement. “We are, and will remain, the first choice for girls and parents who want to provide their girls opportunities to build new skills, explore STEM and the outdoors, participate in community projects, and grow into happy, successful, civically engaged adults.”
Latifah (born Dana Owens in Newark, N.J.) also gave the Rutgers University commencement address in her home state on Monday, where she received an honorary doctorate degree in fine arts. The “Ladies First” rapper encouraged young women to love themselves, recalling: “I was taller than the other girls, bigger than the other girls, different than the other girls. By the time I was 13, I had body. All of it. It was all there. (Still is. I’m damn proud of it. Look at it.)”
And in line with her Girl Scouts PSA, she encouraged the graduating Class of 2018 to be their own role models. “I was looking for a role model to emulate, but nobody looked quite like me … Bringing someone else to life on the stage in a way that came from deep inside … it was a foundation that taught me I didn’t need a role model. I didn’t need to try to be like someone else. I just needed to be me. Class of 2018, you need to keep searching for a role model? No. You are the role model. Now go out there and make a difference. Be that difference.”
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