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Urban One, Inc. Star-Studded Lineup

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URBAN ONE, INC. ANNOUNCES A STAR-STUDDED LINEUP OF HONOREES FOR URBAN ONE HONORS: JAMIE FOXX, SYLVIA RHONE, MISSY ELLIOTT AND RYAN JAMAAL SWAIN 

PERFORMERS AND PRESENTERS TO INCLUDE NE-YO, WALE, BRANDY, PASTOR CHARLES JENKINS, ERIC BENÉT, JAC ROSS, BILLY PORTER AND CLARENCE AVANT

Urban One Honors Commemorates the 40th Anniversary of Radio One and Recognizes African American Luminaries

Cathy Hughes, Urban One Founder and Chairwoman, announced the honorees, performers and presenters for the prestigious annual URBAN ONE HONORS event on Thursday, December 5, 2019, at MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland. The two-hour telecast will air on TV One, a division of Urban One, on January 20, 2020, the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. This year’s honorees include: veteran music executive Sylvia Rhone (Lifetime Achievement Award); Grammy Award-winning recording artist and producer Missy Elliott(Music Innovation Award); Academy Award-winning actor Jamie Foxx (Entertainment Icon Award); and actor/dancer and star of “Pose,” Ryan Jamaal Swain (Represent Pride Award). Performers include: Grammy Award-winning recording artist and songwriter Ne-Yo; Grammy-nominated rapper Wale; Grammy Award-winning R&B superstar Brandy; R&B singer Eric Benét; gospel singer Pastor Charles Jenkins; new music artist Jac Ross; and television host Egypt Sherrod. Actor/singer and star of “Pose” Billy Porter, and the subject of Netflix’s documentary “The Black Godfather” Clarence Avant are among the show’s presenters.  “This will be an evening to remember,” stated Hughes. “We are extremely proud to present this showcase of talent in recognition of these exceptional men and women whose contributions “REPRESENT” our capacity to transform industries and effectuate change. I am overjoyed that we can celebrate the anniversary of Radio One with an event that honors what has been our mission of service to our community over these 40 years.” URBAN ONE HONORS is presented by TV One and Radio One’s Washington D.C. market’s cluster of radio stations: Majic 102.3 and 92.7; WKYS 93.9, Praise 104.1WOL 1450Spirit 1340, and The Team 980 and 95.9. The televised event will herald the accomplishments of individuals who have made extraordinary contributions in entertainment, media, music, education, and the community. It will also pay tribute to the 40-year history of Radio One, the radio division of the company, and its extraordinary founder, Cathy Hughes. 
Hughes continued, “We are blessed to have Billy Porter as part of our event. No matter how busy the Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award-winning performer is, he has made time to support Urban One and continues to be an advocate for black press.”  “It’s so amazing to be a part of an organization that is about the excellence of black people and to know that I’m an honoree at this year’s Urban One Honors in conjunction with celebrating the 40-year anniversary of Radio One,” stated Ryan Jamaal Swain. “It just shows we’re in a place where we are accepting innovation, diversity and inclusion – and not just buzz words. It’s so beautiful to have my pop-up Billy Porter presenting me with my award and it’s going to be an event that I feel will set the tone for the trajectory of entertainment, media, radio and also the world.”
“I’m very happy to be here to support Cathy Hughes, as a honoree of last year’s awards, it’s a good feeling to be recognized and appreciated” said Brandy, who is a featured performer at this year’s event.
URBAN ONE HONORS is produced for TV One by Eric Tomosunas and Keith Neal of Swirl Films. Kashon Powell, Vice President of Programming for Radio One, Susan Henry and Gold Morgan are the Executives in Charge of Production for TV One. For TV One’s Original Programming and Production, Robyn Greene Arrington serves as Vice President and Brigitte McCray serves as Senior Vice President. Tickets to the awards show are available to the public and can be purchased aturbanonehonors.com.

Photo Credit: Nerissa Gravely Jones, Courtesy of TV One


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Netflix to Move $100 Million into Black-Owned Banks

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Netflix, the world’s leading streaming entertainment service, has announced that it will be allocating two percent of its cash holdings – initially up to $100 million – into Black-owned financial institutions and organizations that directly support Black communities in the U.S. They are the first Fortune 500 company in history to ever do anything like this!

According to a press release on the company’s web site, Netflix will start its $100 million commitment by first moving $25 million to a newly established fund called the Black Economic Development Initiative. It will be managed by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a non-profit with a track record of developing underinvested communities. They will invest the funds into Black financial institutions serving low and moderate-income communities and Black community development corporations in the U.S.

In addition, $10 million will immediately go to Hope Credit Union in the form of a Transformational Deposit to fuel economic opportunity in underserved communities across the Deep South. Bill Bynum, CEO of HOPE, has spent the last three decades advancing economic mobility in distressed communities.

Another announcement will be made in the near future regarding the remaining $65 million, which will likely be split up among several other institutions including the nation’s largest Black-owned bank, OneUnited Bank.

Other Fortune 500 companies encouraged to do the same

Netflix reports that “if every company in the S&P 500 allocated a modest amount of their cash holdings into efforts like the Black Economic Development Initiative, each one percent of their cash would represent $20-$30 billion of new capital. And that would help build stronger communities, offering more Black families pathways to prosperity and a more equitable future.”

The company says, “Black banks have been fighting to better their communities for decades but they’re disadvantaged by their lack of access to capital. The major banks, where big multinational companies including ours keep most of their money, are also focusing more on improving equity, but not at the grassroots level these Black-led institutions can and do. So we wanted to redirect some of our cash specifically toward these communities, and hope to inspire other large companies to do the same with their cash deposits.”

Launched in 1997, Netflix currently has more than 183 million paid memberships in over 190 countries. Their annual revenue is usually around $20 billion.

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DuVernay and Kaepernick Team Up On Netflix

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Photo: Reuters, Getty

Netflix Announces a New Dramatic Limited Series on Colin Kaepernick’s High School Years Created by Kaepernick and Ava DuVernay ‘Colin in Black & White’

Hollywood, Calif. — The adolescent life of all-star athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick will come to television screens around the world in Colin in Black & White, a new scripted limited series from Kaepernick and Academy Award® Nominee and Emmy Award® Winner Ava DuVernay. The series will focus on Kaepernick’s formative high school years, lending meaningful insight into the acts and experiences that led him to become the activist he is today. Emmy Award® Nominee Michael Starrbury writes and serves as executive producer, alongside DuVernay and Kaepernick who will appear as himself as narrator of the series.

The six-episode series, which was conceived in 2019 and recently completed writing in May, provides an introspective look at Kaepernick’s early life as a Black child growing up with a white adopted family and his journey to become a great quarterback while defining his identity. The limited series reunites Starrbury and DuVernay who last worked together on Netflix’s acclaimed When They See Us, which received 16 Emmy Award® Nominations, including a nomination for Outstanding Writing for the duo and was recently honored with a Peabody Award®. 

“With his act of protest, Colin Kaepernick ignited a national conversation about race and justice with far-reaching consequences for football, culture and for him, personally,” said DuVernay. “Colin’s story has much to say about identity, sports and the enduring spirit of protest and resilience. I couldn’t be happier than to tell this story with the team at Netflix.” 

“Too often we see race and Black stories portrayed through a white lens,” said Kaepernick. “We seek to give new perspective to the differing realities that Black people face. We explore the racial conflicts I faced as an adopted Black man in a white community, during my high school years. It’s an honor to bring these stories to life in collaboration with Ava for the world to see.”

“We’re proud to bring Colin’s experience and his creative vision to life as he joins Ava to share his powerful story and message with all our members around the world,” said Cindy Holland, Vice President, Original Content for Netflix. “It is an unparalleled union of two strong and defining voices coming together to tell the story about what it’s like to be Black in America.”

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BET Awards 2020

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THE “BET AWARDS” 2020 AIRS SUNDAY, JUNE 28, AT 8PM ET/PT ON BET, BET HER, AND CBS

#BETAwards

Hosted by comedian and actress Amanda Seales, The “BET AWARDS” 2020 will simulcast LIVE at 8 pm ET across ViacomCBS networks including BET, BET HER, and will make its national broadcast premiere on CBS. “BET Awards” 2020 will feature performances by Alicia Keys, Black Thought, Chloe X Halle, DaBaby, D Smoke, Jay Rock, Jennifer Hudson, John Legend,  Jonathan McReynolds, Kane Brown, Karen Clark Sheard, Kierra Sheard, Lil Wayne, Megan Thee Stallion, Jahi, Nas, Public Enemy, Questlove, Rapsody, Roddy Ricch, SiR, Summer Walker, Usher and YG, with performances by  BET Amplified Artists, Masego and Lonr. who are set to take the BET Amplified Music Stage, a platform for emerging artists. Congresswoman Maxine Waters, along with leading entertainers Billy Porter, Courtney B. Vance, Debbie Allen, Deon Cole, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, La La Anthony, Lena Waithe, Lizzo, Michael B. Jordan, Misty Copeland, Naomi Campbell, Omari Hardwick, Quavo, Quincy Jones, Rapsody, Regina Hall, Samuel L. Jackson, Saweetie, Sterling K. Brown, Viola Davis, and Whoopi Goldberg will reflect on the current state of the community with a spotlight on Social Justice as well as the Network’s 40th anniversary with a special appearance by BET founder Robert L. Johnson.

BET Networks announces new additions to the line-up of the 20th Annual “BET Awards,” honoring prolific activists in the Black community and recognizing those who unfortunately left us in 2020. The world endured incredible losses this year including NBA Legend Kobe Bryant and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Little Richard. In memoriam of those great lossesGrammy Award-Winning Global icon and superstar Lil’ Wayne will give tribute to Kobe Bryant and the multitalented Wayne Brady will honor Little Richard. BET Network also announces Beyoncé Knowles-Carter will be honored with the prestigious Humanitarian Award at the 20th annual “BET Awards.” Additionally, the 20th Annual BET Awards is proud to honor Nicolas Johnson, Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, and D-Nice as the 2020 Shine A Light Honorees, which recognizes exceptional resilience, ingenuity and creativity in the face of adversity. This year’s honorees demonstrate how art and education can unite and inspire even during the most challenging of times. Assa Traoré a French anti-racist activist has been selected as the 2020 BET International Global Good recipient, which recognizes global celebrities and public figures who use their platform for social responsibility and goodness while demonstrating a commitment to the welfare of the global black community.

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