Tarana Burke
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/Shutterstock
United States

Girls for Gender Equity


Senior Director

Burke emerged on the national stage seemingly overnight, but she’d spent years as a community organizer and social-justice activist in New York and elsewhere before the Harvey Weinstein scandal galvanized the movement that Burke christened #MeToo in 2017 and made a previously hush-hush topic watercooler conversation. She encouraged women to come forward with long-repressed memories of sexual assault and harassment at the hands of powerful men by telling her own story of debilitating workplace inequity. She has seized the moment to become a sought-after public speaker on college campuses about sexual violence and gender equality. Long before #MeToo took root, she founded and remains the director of Just Be Inc., a New York-based nonprofit focused on assisting teen girls of color find their voice.


  • Just Be, Inc.
  • National Voting Rights Museum (Selma, AL)
  • Art Sanctuary in Philadelphia


  • Alabama State University (AL, USA)
  • Auburn University (AL, USA)

Variety Honors

  • 2018 Variety500 Honoree
  • New Power of New York
  • Variety Power of Women
  • Women's Impact
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News from Variety

#MeToo Founder Tarana Burke on the Rigorous Work That Still Lies Ahead

#MeToo Founder Tarana Burke on the Rigorous Work That Still Lies Ahead

Twelve years ago, I could never have predicted all that has happened in the past 12 months. Historically, in this country, there has been very little space to talk about sexual violence in ways that focus on survivors and solutions, especially in the media. Cases that should have signaled a serious, persistent problem were reduced to salacious gossip and tawdry headlines; the last year hasn’t done much to change that.Some might see the cases of Harvey Weinstein and Les Moonves...


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