The Advocate July/Aug 2022
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Mj Rodriguez Wins Best Actress at Imagen Awards, Makes Trans Herstory

Mj Rodriguez

Mj Rodriguez is a trailblazer once again.

The Pose star became the first transgender woman to win Best Actress - Television at the Imagen Awards, an annual event honoring positive representations of Latinx people in media.

Rodriguez, who portrays Blanca on the acclaimed FX drama, recognized the historic nature of her win Saturday onstage at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel.

"It’s so crazy to be standing up here because you'd never think in a million years you’d get an award like this being a woman like me," said Rodriguez, who thanked her mother, Pose cocreators Steven Canals and Ryan Murphy, and Janet Mock in her speech.

"Obviously, this is not just for me," she added. "This is for the little kids like me ... and I’m just trying to speak as much as I can for my community as possible and that goes for my Latino community."

Rodriguez was not the only win for Pose; the series tied with Magnum P.I. for Best Television Drama. Additionally, One Day at a Time won Best Comedy, with Rita Moreno taking home Best Supporting Actress – Television.

Pose received six Emmy nominations this year, including Best Actor for Billy Porter (Pray Tell) and Best Drama. The series, set in New York City's ballroom scene of the 1980s, made history for having the most transgender actors in a scripted series — yet none of those actors has received an Emmy nom. In particular, Rodriguez and Indya Moore (Angel) have been lauded by critics for their performances.

At present, Laverne Cox is the only transgender woman to have ever received an Emmy nomination, for her role as Sophia in Orange Is the New Black.

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