León is also the founder and artistic director of Composers Now, a presenting, commissioning, and advocacy organization for living composers. One of their latest undertakings is the Composers Now Second Stage Project (CNSS), which gives mentoring and performance opportunities to young composers, with funding from the Toulmin Foundation.
Among her many honors, from Grammy nominations to prestigious fellowships, León received a Distinguished Alumni Award from NYU in 1994. More recently, she was awarded the 2021 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her orchestral work Stride; the piece was commissioned by the New York Philharmonic to mark the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which granted women in the US the right to vote. In 2022, León was named a recipient of the 45th Annual Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime artistic achievements.
Beginning this year, León will concurrently hold the composer-in-residence position at the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Richard and Barbara Debs Composer's Chair at Carnegie Hall.
Celebrated Native American visual artist Nadema Agard is the 2021 Dorothy Height Distinguished Alumni Award winner.
Arthur J. Antin (MA ’73) is the co-founder of the nation’s largest network of animal care providers and NYU Steinhardt 2020 Dorothy Height Distinguished Alumni Award winner.
Carmen Fariña is the former chancellor of the New York City Department of Education and Dorothy Height Distinguished Alumni Award winner.