Kerry Washington Headlining New Friends New Life Luncheon

Emmy-winning and SAG-nominated actor and activist Kerry Washington will headline New Friends New Life’s annual luncheon in September, a celebration of the nonprofit’s Silver Jubilee.

The luncheon set for 11:30 a.m. Sept. 29  at the Hyatt Regency Dallas is co-chaired by Tracey Nash-Huntley and David Huntley and Elizabeth Carlock Phillips and Kevin Phillips. Honorary co-chairs represent several of the founding and early board members of NFNL: Nancy Ann and Ray Hunt; Gail and Dr. Gerald Turner; and Pat and Pete Schenkel.

Founded in 1998 when a woman walked into the local Preston Road Church of Christ seeking help, New Friends New Life has continued and expanded on the work of the original and early board members who first helped the woman find employment and support.

The program grew beyond the church committee and became a separate nonprofit under the name of Amy’s Friends in January 2000. In 2001, the organization hired its first executive director, two social workers, and one part-time advocate. Later, in 2007, as more women came forward seeking help, Amy’s Friends revamped its presence and became New Friends New Life. Today, New Friends New Life offers a variety evidence-based programs to help survivors of sex trafficking and exploitation recover from complex trauma.

Luncheon Speaker Kerry Washington, known for her role as Olivia Pope on the hit ABC drama Scandal as well as her film credits in Django Unchained, Ray, The Last King of Scotland, Save the Last Dance, Our Song, The School for Good and Evil, and, most recently, Unprisoned on Hulu, is also an advocate and activist.

Washington has been honored as one of Time magazine’s 2022 Women of the Year, in addition to appearing on the magazine’s Most Influential People list in 2014. She also received the 2013 NAACP President’s Award, the 2015 GLAAD Media Vanguard Award, and the 2016 ACLU Bill of Rights Award. In 2022, Washington partnered with LAUSD and others to launch The Roybal School of Film and Television Production, a magnet school aiming to drive change across the entertainment industry for students from underserved communities.

“Kerry is known for encouraging others to show up, answer the call, stand strong, and give other women a hand up just as the founders of New Friends New Life felt called to do 25 years ago,” said Bianca Davis, CEO of New Friends New Life. “We could not be more pleased to introduce her to our supporters at our Silver Jubilee Luncheon – a watershed moment to reflect on the impact we each can make when we choose to take a stand in this monumental effort to dismantle, disrupt, and disarm an industry that is victimizing 25 million people around the world, including 313,000 people right here in Texas.”

Underwriting sponsorship opportunities begin at $2,500. A limited number of individual tickets will be released closer to the date and will begin at $250 each. To reserve your sponsorship or seats, please visit, email [email protected] contact Senior Development Director Priya Murphy at 214-217-8652.

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