By Elisha Reid
Ariana Grande has been named as Billboards 2018 Woman of the Year. Previous winners include Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, Madonna and Selena Gomez. The announcement was made shortly after Apple Music revealed Grande’s latest hit ‘‘Thank u, next’’, being the first song to reach number one on the Top 100 Global Chart as well as on the Top 100 U.S. Chart.
In a statement Billboard’s vice president of content, Ross Scarano, says Grande “Consistently stands up for herself and her decisions in a world that often isn’t hospitable to that sort of strength in young women. She’s got guts, she’s making some of the best music of her career, and she’s absolutely deserving of Woman of the Year.”
In the past year, Grande has hit the Top 40 with many of her hits such as ‘‘God is a Woman’’, ‘‘Breathin’’ and ‘‘No Tears left to Cry’’. Another achievement the singer gained was helping to organize the One Love Manchester concert last year, raising more than £23 million for victims of the May 2017 Manchester bombing, which featured acts including Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry and Justin Bieber.
Outside of her music, the past year and a half Grande has also had to overcome many personal battles. In September, her ex-boyfriend, rapper Mac Miller, died of an accidental overdose after being found at his home in LA. Miller had been known for struggling with addiction in the past. He was arrested just months before his death for driving under the influence of alcohol. Before Mac’s tragic untimely death, Ariana was also battling with post-traumatic stress disorder after 22 people died – and more than 500 were injured – in a terrorist attack at one of her concerts in Manchester on 22 May 2017.
Billboard recognized Ariana’s activism. Grande is an advocate for mental health awareness, the LGBTQ community, people of colour as well as gender equality, proudly calling herself a feminist.
The 25-year-old will receive the award on December 6th on Billboards 13th annual Women in Music event in New York City.