PERFORMANCES BY AKON, NATALIE COLE, STEVIE WONDER, KATHARINE MCPHEE, JESSE MCCARTNEY, LEDISI AND MORE
"STARPOWER" ONLINE GIVING CAMPAIGN
FAIRFAX, Va., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- UNCF–the United Negro College Fund– will broadcast its An Evening of Stars® Tribute to Lionel Richie nationally on more than 35 stations in major markets, and on WGN at 11 p.m. CT on Saturday, January 23rd and BET Networks on Sunday, January 24th at 10 p.m. ET. STAR POWER, UNCF's online giving campaign also celebrates minority education. A complete list of stations and background information can be found online at www.aneveningofstars.org.
With more than 42 years in music behind him, five time Grammy-winning international superstar Lionel Richie will be surrounded on the An Evening of Stars® (AEOS) stage by an all-star lineup of entertainers as he is presented with the UNCF Award of Excellence. The award cites his long entertainment career and support for UNCF and minority education.
This year's roster of performers will feature nine-time Grammy Award winner Natalie Cole, Akon, Jesse McCartney, Chrisette Michele, Boney James, Katharine McPhee, Ledisi, Johnny Gill, James Ingram, Brian McKnight, Mary Mary's Erica Campbell and 25-time Grammy Award winner Stevie Wonder.
A parade of celebrities will join UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael Lomax in honoring Richie, along with special taped presentations by Will.i.am, Ne-Yo, Nicole Richie, Quincy Jones, Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy.
Presenters include syndicated radio host and HBCU fundraiser Tom Joyner; Shemar Moore from Criminal Minds; Terrence Howard of Iron Man; USC basketball star Romeo; Cedric The Entertainer, whose foundation grants more than a dozen UNCF scholarships each year; Justin Chambers of Grey's Anatomy; Bobb'e J. Thompson of Role Models; Gina Ravera of The Closer; Tracie Thoms of Cold Case; Regina King of Our Family Wedding; Dexter's Lauren Velez; Paige Hurd of Everybody Hates Chris; Terri Crews of Gamer; former Motown executive Suzanne de Passe; WGN's Merri Dee; Extra's AJ Calloway and Access Hollywood's Shaun Robinson. Six-time Emmy Award winner Louis J. Horvitz is executive producer and director of An Evening of Stars®.
"This year's An Evening of Stars® program is special because in honoring the great Lionel Richie, we are for the first time honoring a graduate of a UNCF member institution, Tuskegee University," said Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., UNCF president and CEO. "The show is filled with high energy and ballad performances of Lionel Richie hits like Endless Love, Truly, I Call It Love and many more from his extensive song book, as we celebrate not only his contribution to the music industry but his dedication to minority education. We are grateful for the support of all of our celebrities, sponsors and supporters, who enable UNCF to help promising students get the college degrees they need and our nation needs them to have."
Target is the "Presenting Sponsor" of An Evening of Stars®. National corporate sponsors of AEOS include AT&T and McDonald's. Official sponsors include American Airlines, Wachovia, a Wells Fargo Company, Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc, BET Networks and WGN.
UNCF also launched "STAR POWER," its AEOS online giving campaign. STAR POWER gives Americans a chance to help deserving students go to college. With a fundraising goal of $250,000, the campaign runs through March 31, 2010. Education supporters can join regional teams to help UNCF raise awareness for minority education and raise funds to help students go to college. All donors are encouraged to post the STAR POWER link on their Facebook and Myspace pages. To learn more, visit www.UNCF.org and click on the STAR POWER icon or visit www.aneveningofstars.org.
About An Evening of Stars®
An Evening of Stars® (AEOS), formerly the Lou Rawls Parade of Stars®, first aired in 1979, and since that time has become one of the longest running and most successful televised events in U.S. history. Lou Rawls, a spokesperson for UNCF and champion for AEOS for more than 25 years, is credited with helping raise more than $200 million to help UNCF scholarship recipients and member institutions and their students pay the cost of higher education. In recent years, AEOS has featured a Who's Who of recognizable talent, including Stevie Wonder, John Legend, Chaka Khan, Ne-Yo, Nancy Wilson, Beyonce, Anita Baker, Jill Scott, Whoopi Goldberg, Fantasia, Joss Stone, Jennifer Hudson, Michael Bolton, Natalie Cole, Herbie Hancock, Al Jarreau, Hall and Oates, Ziggy Marley, Maroon 5, and scores of others. An Evening of Stars® received an Image Award for its 2006 tribute to Stevie Wonder and the 2008 tribute to Smokey Robinson. Learn more about AEOS at www.uncf.org.
UNCF—the United Negro College Fund—is the nation's largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students' education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 39 private member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding 18 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 900 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."® Learn more at www.UNCF.org.
SOURCE United Negro College Fund