USA Today honored Magic Johnson with the Hollywood Hero Award on May 6, 2008 in Beverly Hills. The award is presented annually to an entertainment industry humanitarian who has made remarkable contributions of time and energies with a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the quality of life for others. Johnson was recognized for his work in entertainment and underserved communities with the Magic Johnson Foundation.
"I am humbled and honored to receive this award but I have to share it with all of my corporate and community partners as they have helped make everything we do possible," said Earvin "Magic" Johnson, founder of the Magic Johnson Foundation. "Together, we have positively impacted a lot of communities and a lot of lives and that feels good." Source: USATMagic Johnson, Cookie Johnson, Chante Moore and Kenny Lattimore
Magic Johnson with fellow philanthropists Russell Simmons, and R&B legend Chaka Khan
Mary J. Blige recently celebrated the Heart of the City Tour wrap up party on May 7, 2008 in New York. I attended the tour while I was in Houston last month on business. Although I partially lost my hearing for a day, it was worth the ticket.
Mary with fellow philanthropist Kevin Liles
In related news, Mary J. Blige along with record executive Steve Stoute, have launched FFAWN, the Mary J. Blige and Steve Stoute Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now, Inc. The website states that the foundation's mission is to inspire women from all walks of life to reach their individual potential. Through scholarships, grants, and programs that foster strong self-esteem, career development, and personal growth, FFAWN is intended to help women gain the confidence and skills they need to achieve success. The foundation will initially focus its efforts in Yonkers and surrounding communities in Westchester and then expand its scope to include the Greater New York area and, eventually, the entire country.
The Ford Freedom Award program was created in 1999 to celebrate and recognize individuals whose achievements brought lasting and positive change for African Americans and the world. The program is underwritten by Ford, and funds raised are used to support the Charles H. Wright Museum of African-American History’s educational programs, exhibits and community outreach initiatives. Past honorees have included Ossie Davis, Langston Hughes, Bill Cosby, Dr. Ben Carson, Al Jarreau and Sonia Sanchez, to name a few. Source: Ford press release
Academy award winner Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta, announce the Pauletta and Denzel Washington Family Gifted Scholars in Neuroscience Awards. The awards are given by the Cedars-Sinai Department of Neurosurgery, providing research stipends to one undergraduate and graduate student every year. In photo: Dr. Keith Black, Pauletta Washington, scholarship award winner Debi Thomas and Denzel Washington. Debi Thomas is a junior at Univ. of California at Davis, studying neurobiology, physiology and behavior, interested in finding a cure for Parkinson's disease. Source: lohud.com