Bono to Receive NAACP Chairman's Award

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Jan. 22, 2007

NAACP Image Awards executive producer Vicangelo Bulluck recently announced that musician and activist Bono will receive this year's NAACP Chairman's Award, to be presented during the March 2, 2007 live broadcast of the 38th NAACP Image Awards on FOX (8p.m. ET/PT).

NAACP Board Chairman Julian Bond selects the recipient of the Chairman's Award, which is bestowed in recognition of special achievement and distinguished public service.

"Bono has been an inspiration to many people around the world through his music and humanitarian efforts," said Bond. "We are delighted to honor him with this award in recognition of the difference he has made and to acknowledge his ongoing campaigning to actively engage Americans from all walks of life in the fight against extreme poverty and the global AIDS pandemic."

"The Chairman's Award is one of three special NAACP Image Awards that will be presented this year," stated NAACP Image Awards Chairman Clayola Brown. "The other previously announced honors include the Hall of Fame Award to be presented to Bill Cosby and the President's Award being given to Soledad O'Brien. I think our honorees this year are diverse and inspiring. It should make for a very exciting and culturally informative show."

Bono is the lead singer of Irish rock band U2. The band has sold over 130 million albums and won numerous awards for their music, including 22 Grammy awards. Bono is also a passionate and entrepreneurial advocate in the fight against AIDS and extreme poverty in Africa.

Bono's interest in Africa was ignited after he and wife Ali Hewson spent a month working at a feeding camp in Ethiopia in 1985.

In 1986, U2 headlined the Amnesty International Conspiracy of Hope Tour. In 1998, Bono became involved in the Jubilee campaign to "Drop the Debt" of the world's poorest nations. Four years later, he and Bobby Shriver created an advocacy organization called DATA (debt, AIDS, trade, Africa).

In 2004, with leaders from 90 other anti-poverty organizations, Bono helped launch ONE: The Campaign to Make Poverty History, which today includes 2.4 million members united in the fight against extreme poverty.

Bono has lobbied U.S. presidents and congressional leaders, along with the heads of many other G8 nations, on behalf of DATA's agenda. In 2005 DATA's efforts contributed to the G8 decision to cancel the debts of the world's poorest countries and provide $25 billion in additional annual development assistance to Africa by 2010.

Also in 2005, in an effort to increase trade opportunities and sustainable long-term employment in developing nations, Ali Hewson, Bono and designer Rogan Gregory launched EDUN, an ethically-sourced high fashion clothing company.

In 2006, Bono and Bobby Shriver joined with international corporate leaders to launch Product (RED), a new organization that is raising awareness about the AIDS crisis in Africa and driving millions of dollars into the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

For his music and activism Bono was awarded the Legion d'Honneur (2003) and named one of Time magazine's Persons of the Year 2005, along with Bill and Melinda Gates. In December it was announced that Bono will also be awarded an honorary British knighthood.

Major sponsors of the 38th NAACP Image Awards are FedEx, Verizon, and General Motors. Additional sponsors include Allstate Insurance Company, American Airlines, Anheuser-Busch Companies, Chrysler, Diageo and Sprint.

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

For more information on the NAACP Image Awards, please visit www.naacpimageawards.net.

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