The NAACP will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day next year by holding its 49th annual Image Awards on the holiday. The group said today that its trophy show will be held January 15, airing live on TV One.
It will mark the first time since 1994 that the Image Awards will be handed out in January, with the show being staged in during Black History Month in February eight of the past nine years. The two-hour special also will include a live pre-show from the red carpet.
“The NAACP is proud to air our 49th Image Awards live telecast on the nation’s most significant civil rights day of the year celebrating the life and achievements of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” said Leon W. Russell, chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors. “In alignment with the National Martin Luther King Day of Service, we are encouraging our nominees, celebrity presenters and performers, network representatives, staff, directors, trustees, sponsors, and branches and units in all 50 states to join us in a day of citizen action volunteer service in honor of Dr. King. As the nation commemorates the 50th anniversary of his assassination on April 4, 1968, we are reminded of the ageless principles of non-violence, truth and justice, humility, and service that he taught all Americans.”
The Image Awards celebrate the accomplishments of people of color in the fields of television, music, literature and film, and also honors individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors. Nominations will be announced during the week of November 13, when final voting will open.