Pro-Choice Political Action Group Calls Philly Councilwoman a ‘Rising Star'

A trailblazing member of Philadelphia City Council is being recognized by a group dedicated to getting pro-choice woman elected.

Emily’s List recognized Councilwoman at-Large Helen Gym with its Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award earlier this week. Gym is the first Asian-American woman on Philly's council.

In a Facebook post, Gym, a first-term Democrat, thanked the group for its support "and, most important, for believing in and building a broader movement for justice."

Lucinda Guinn, vice president of campaigns at Emily's List, told NBC News that the work Gym has done for Philadelphia public schools, fighting to keep Philadelphia a sanctuary city and immigrant rights weighed into the recognition.

"All of our nominees this year were tremendous leaders in their communities, and Helen is no exception," Guinn told NBC News.

On its website, Emily’s List speaks of the group’s vision for a balance of power:

"Our vision is a government that reflects the people it serves, and decision makers who genuinely and enthusiastically fight for greater opportunity and better lives for the Americans they represent," the post says. "We will work for larger leadership roles for pro-choice Democratic women in our legislative bodies and executive seats so that our families can benefit from the open-minded, productive contributions that women have consistently made in office."

Gym said she plans to accept that reward and share her "Philadelphia story" at a gala in Washington, D.C. next week.

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