Motown Records receives the Icon Award as former BET chief Debra Lee is presented with the inaugural Chairman's Award
Drake, Cardi B, Travis Scott and Motown Records were among those honored at Ebony's annual Power 100 Gala on Friday (Nov. 30). Presented by Nationwide Insurance at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, Calif., the sit-down affair was hosted by actor and comedian Chris Tucker and featured performances by Grammy Award winner Ne-Yo and emerging act JAMESDAVIS.
Black achievement and excellence was the reverberating theme throughout the evening. Motown President Ethiopia Habtemariam accepted the Icon Award on behalf of the legendary label, which will be celebrating its 60th anniversary next year. The award was given in recognition of Motown's historic and artistic legacy as well as its present-day success through Motown and Capitol Music Group's joint venture with Quality Control Music (Migos, Lil Yachty, Lil Baby, and City Girls) and additional roster mates such as BJ the Chicago Kid, and Erykah Badu. Reminiscing back to her childhood in the South, Habtemariam noted, "As of a child of immigrants growing up in Atlanta, my mom personally loved all of the Ebony covers. It made her feel like, 'OK, I can be here in America and I can make it.'"
BET's former chairman/CEO Debra Lee was presented with the inaugural Chairman's Award. Lee also reminisced about growing up and reading Ebony. "I grew up in the era where we did not have a lot of authentic images of African Americans," she said, "We were barely on the television in the 60s and 70s." Lee also referenced BET's mantra during her executive tenure, which was to "respect, reflect and elevate our audience."