Marlee Matlin honored with Ruderman Award for disability activism


(JTA) — Oscar-winning Jewish actress Marlee Matlin is being honored by the Ruderman Family Foundation for her activism on behalf of people with disabilities.

Matlin, who is deaf, will be recognized with the annual Morton E. Ruderman Award in Inclusion, the foundation announced Wednesday in a statement. The actress, who serves as a spokeswoman for the National Association for the Deaf, will receive the $100,000 award in June during a trip to Israel.

“Marlee Matlin is the embodiment of a force that has broken down barriers and changed perceptions of people with disabilities worldwide,” said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “Her long and celebrated career in Hollywood serves as a shining example of the value of including people with disabilities in our society.”

Matlin will receive the award, which is in its fourth year, 30 years after she became the first deaf actor to win a major Academy Award for her performance in the romantic drama film “Children of a Lesser God.”

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