We all watched as Kamala Harris stood where no woman, and no Black or South Asian woman, has ever stood before in U.S. history.
It was a milestone moment for millions of Americans who have yearned to see faces that resemble their own at the highest levels of our democracy.
A new film released by Girl Up, the gender equality youth initiative of the United Nations Foundation, in partnership with Refinery29 and Ogilvy, captures this history-making moment through the eyes of girls who watched as the daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants was sworn in as the 49th Vice President of the United States, becoming the highest-ranking female politician in American history.
‘Today We Rise’ illustrates the immeasurable impact that the images of Vice President Harris taking her oath of office, administered by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor—the first Latina to serve on the nation’s highest court—will have on generations to come.
‘Today We Rise’ was filmed and produced by a volunteer network of photographers and cinematographers during the inauguration in over 30 households across the country. It was edited immediately after the inauguration ceremony, going live within hours of the event.
The film will be featured in a personal essay by Refinery29’s global editor-in-chief Simone Oliver as she reflects on what this moment means to her as a Black woman and Howard Alumna as well as for future generations of young girls, including her daughters.
Melissa Kilby, Girl Up executive director, said: “This moment is about hope and possibilities. It's about infinite potential – not just that of Madam Vice President Kamala Harris, but of every girl, everywhere. Girls seeing her taking the oath will grow up to remember the moment they first believed they could do anything – because of what they saw her do.”
Simone Oliver, global editor-in-chief at Refinery29, said: "I’m not naïve to think the swearing in of Madam Vice President Kamala Harris was the antidote for a nation in need. It was about representation and showing our girls what’s possible and that possibility offers hope."
Daniel Fisher, global executive creative director at Ogilvy, said: “It is hard to sum up the impact this moment will have around the world in words, so we wanted people to experience it through the faces that will shape the future. Vice President Kamala Harris may be the first woman to hold high office in the US, but she won’t be the last. The inauguration was a huge moment in history, so it’s an honour for Ogilvy to have collaborated with Girl Up to make this film and we’re so grateful to everyone who donated their time to help us capture this inspiring event.”
Melissa Kilby, Executive Director
Beth Nervig, Director of Communications and Digital Media
Jennifer DaSilva, Advisory Board Member, Girl Up and President, Berlin Cameron
Agency - Ogilvy
Daniel Fisher – Global ECD
Alvaro Rivera — Creative Director / Creative
Luca Corteggiano – Creative Director / Creative
Sally Miller – Executive Producer
Vanessa Manley – Project Manager
Pumie Msengana – Global Client Director
Cristina Diago – Strategist
Giovanni Messner – Director/Editor
Dannel Escallón – Cinematographer
Daniel Addelson – Additional Photography
UNIT Studios London – Post House
Music - “Dream”
Jack Bennett – Composer
1107 Studios – Label
Andrew Stafford @ Big Sync Music – Music Supervisor