The Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation has selected Universal Pictures Chairman Donna Langley as recipient of its Pioneer of the Year honor.
She will be presented with the award on April 13 at CinemaCon in Las Vegas.
Past honorees include Cecil B. DeMille, Jack Warner, Darryl F. Zanuck, Jack Valenti, Terry Semel, Sumner Redstone, Sherry Lansing, Alan Horn, Kathleen Kennedy, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Tom Sherak and the 2015 honoree, Jim Gianopulos. Proceeds from the event benefit the Pioneers Assistance Fund charity that helps individuals who work in theatrical entertainment and are encountering an illness, injury or life-changing event.
Langley is in her third year as the sole chairman of the film studio, which set records in 2015 as the highest-grossing domestic, international and worldwide box-office years ever. The year included “Jurassic World,” “Furious 7” and “Minions” — the first time any studio tallied three films to gross $1 billion each at the worldwide box office.
Langley is a board member and ambassador for Vital Voices Global Partnership, an organization dedicated to mentoring women in developing countries throughout the world. She is on the advisory board of Chrysalis, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a pathway to self-sufficiency for homeless and low-income individuals by providing the resources and support needed to find and retain employment.
She is a voting member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and she serves on the board of trustees for the American Film Institute.
“We are extremely grateful that Donna has accepted the 2016 Pioneer of the Year Award and will be receiving this well-deserved honor,” said Chris Aronson, president of the foundation and president of domestic theatrical distribution of 20th Century Fox. “She is a true Pioneer in our industry, demonstrating great leadership not only of her company but the community at large. We look forward to celebrating Donna’s personal and professional accomplishments at CinemaCon 2016, as well as raising much needed funds for the Pioneers Assistance program.”