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Madonna to be honored by GLAAD for lifetime of LGBTQ advocacy

The pop superstar and gay icon will be awarded the LGBTQ advocacy group's Advocate for Change Award.
Image: Madonna performs at the Women's March on Washington on Jan. 21, 2017.
Madonna performs at the Women's March on Washington on Jan. 21, 2017.Theo Wargo / Getty Images file

Madonna will be honored at the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards for a lifetime of accelerating acceptance of the LGBTQ community.

The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer advocacy group announced Tuesday it will present Madonna with its Advocate for Change Award. The 60-year-old singer is the second person and first woman to receive the award that honors a person who, through their work, changed the game for LGBTQ people.

“Madonna always has and always will be the LGBTQ community’s greatest ally and it is only fitting to honor and celebrate our biggest advocate at GLAAD’s biggest event ever,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in a statement shared with NBC News.

“From the HIV crisis to international LGBTQ issues, she fearlessly pushes for a world where LGBTQ people are accepted. Her music and art have been life-saving outlets for LGBTQ people over the years and her affirming words and actions have changed countless hearts and minds," Ellis continued.

While her advocacy for LGBTQ people and issues that impact the community date back to the '80s, in the past decade she has used her platform to speak out against anti-LGBTQ polices and practices in Romania, Malawi and Russia.

"As a matter of principle, I believe in equal rights for all people, no matter what their gender, race, color, religion, or sexual orientation," Madonna wrote in 2010 in response to the imprisonment of two gay men in Malawi. "The world is filled with pain and suffering; therefore, we must support our basic human right to love and be loved."

Madonna will presented with the Advocate for Change Award on May 4 in New York. The GLAAD Media Awards ceremony honors media for fair, accurate and inclusive representations of LGBTQ people and issues.