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Leo Burnett Chicago
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Chicago, IL 60601
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Maggie Shepherd

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Emily Doskow

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The Lion for Change Returns to Leo Burnett

The agency celebrates its third Cannes Glass Lion, honoring a commitment to shattering gender barriers through culture-shifting creativity

In 2015, the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity introduced a new awards category, the Glass Lion, dubbing it the “Lion for Change.” The award, which symbolizes glass ceilings and other barriers to be broken, recognizes and rewards advertising that challenges gender bias and shatters stereotypical images of men and women.

Since the award’s inception, Leo Burnett Worldwide has captured three Glass Lions, from network offices around the world. The awards showcase the agency’s commitment to crafting creative that can change lives while driving business change for brands.

The network’s most recent Glass award this week in Cannes went to Lebanese NGO Kafa’s “Legally Bride,” from Leo Burnett Beirut.

More than 13 percent of Lebanese girls are married before they are 18. “Legally Bride” aimed to raise awareness on the issue, rally public support and change the fate of Lebanese girls in the future. The impact of this campaign also resulted in the United Nations adopting the work to be its own anti-child marriage “#Idont” campaign.

This is the second Glass Lion for Kafa and the Beirut office, which won last year for “Vote For Us. We’ll Vote For You.” The campaign helped spur the passage of an anti-domestic violence law in Lebenon.

Bechara Mouzannar, Leo Burnett MEA chief creative officer and Publicis Communications MEA CCO, said, "The team at Leo Burnett Beirut is humbled by winning, for the second consecutive year, a Glass Lion for Kafa. This restless NGO has been our partner in supporting Lebanese women's empowerment and in implementing behavioral change. It has engaged with more than 700 million people worldwide.”

Leo Burnett’s most notable Glass Lion from 2015 went to the now iconic P&G Always “#LikeAGirl” campaign, from Leo Burnett Toronto, London and Chicago.

The campaign kicked off a girl-empowerment movement that turned a playground taunt, doing something “like a girl,” into a rallying cry for young girls and girls entering puberty. The three-minute video for “#LikeAGirl” has received more than 85 million views across 150 countries and won more than 200 industry awards, including a Grand Prix and Titanium Lions in addition to the Glass at Cannes last year.

The social movement continued with a follow-up film, “#Unstoppable,” and a campaign to encourage the creation of more female-positive emojis, “#LikeAGirl Emoji.” The latter effort even caught the attention of First Lady Michelle Obama.

Speaking to Campaign, Nancy Hannon, EVP, executive creative director, Leo Burnett, said of the ongoing campaign efforts with “#LikeAGirl Emoji”: “We’re looking years into [the future] imagining what the world would be like if half the population stayed confident; what amazing things would happen.”

In partnership with Leo Burnett Mexico, Always also created “Intimate Words,” which took the Grand Prix in Health last year. The campaign sought to empower women outside Oaxaca, Mexico, by finding a way to educate them about the leading cause of death in their community, cervical cancer. Because of cultural taboos, these indigenous women could not explain or describe their symptoms in their native language, so the agency and client helped “rewrite” the intimate words to help explain their condition better.

Across the network, other offices have helped support causes that empower women, including out of Leo Burnett London “Suffocation,” on behalf of nonprofit Karma Nirvana, and “America’s Largest Prison,” for Allstate Foundation Purple Purse, from Leo Burnett Chicago.