Rihanna called for unity as she won the President’s Award during the 51st NAACP Image Awards recently. The 32-year-old singer was handed the prestigious accolade during the ceremony at the Pasadena Convention Center in recognition of her “groundbreaking career as an artist and musician”, as well as being a “stellar public servant”. During her appearance at the show – which honors the achievements of people of color in motion pictures, TV, music, and literature – Rihanna said: “I’m going to try to keep this simple because tonight really isn’t about me. “Because the purpose is bigger than me … My part is a very small part of the work that’s being done in this world – and the work that’s yet to be done.” The chart-topping singer then reflected on her philanthropic efforts. She said: “If there’s anything that I’ve learned, we can only fix this world together. We can’t do it divided. I cannot emphasize that enough.
Previous recipients of the prestigious award include Ella Fitzgerald, Kerry Washington, and Spike Lee. Elsewhere, Lizzo was named the Entertainer of the Year, has enjoyed a meteoric rise over the last 12 months. The 31-year-old star overcame competition from Angela Basset, Billy Porter, Regina King, and Tyler Perry to win the coveted gong.
Meanwhile, Michael B. Jordan won the Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture prize for his performances in ‘Just Mercy’. Michael’s co-star Jamie Foxx beat the likes of Leslie Odom, Wesley Snipes, Tituss Burgess, and Sterling K. Brown to win the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture accolade. Kenyan Hollywood actress Lupita Nyong’o won the award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture for her performance in ‘Us’, seeing off competition from Alfre Woodard, Cynthia Erivo, Jodie Turner-Smith, and Naomie Harris to claim the gong. What’s more, ‘Little’ Star Marsai Martin was named the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture, as well as being the winner of the Outstanding Breakthrough Performance in a Motion Picture prize.