LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Lakers superstar LeBron James is being awarded the NAACP President’s Award, the organization announced Thursday.
Over the past year, the 36-year-old James has been especially outspoken and active on a variety of issues, including police brutality and voting advocacy.
Back in 2018, James opened the I Promise school in his hometown of Akron, Ohio. The school provides free tuition, uniforms, transportation, and meals to underprivileged students in the community.
Ahead of the 2020 election, he co-founded More Than A Vote, a non-profit voting rights group aiming to protect the voting rights of Black citizens in the U.S.
Ahead of a playoff game in August, James and the rest of his Lakers teammates wore altered Make America Great Again hats to honor the memory of Breonna Taylor. The hats had the words “Great Again” crossed out, instead reading “Make America arrest the cops who killed Breonna Taylor.”
“LeBron James is one of the greatest athletes of his generation, and through his work both on and off the court, has transcended beyond sports to become a cultural icon,” said NAACP President Derrick Johnson in a statement. “This is nowhere more evident than over the past year, where LeBron has used his platform to speak out on issues that were directly affecting the Black community including voting initiatives, police brutality, and racial inequality. LeBron epitomizes the type of leadership, sportsmanship, and commitment to social justice that we seek to highlight with our President’s Award.”
Previous recipients of the award include Muhammed Ali, Lauryn Hill, Jay-Z, Jesse Jackson and Condoleezza Rice.
The NAACP Image Awards will be held on March 27 and will air live on CBS2.