Queen Latifah Returns to Host 55th NAACP Image Awards

Queen Latifah will take back her throne as host of the annual NAACP Image Awards once more. The ceremony, which is presented by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), will air Saturday, March 16 on BET and CBS at 8 p.m. EST/PST.

The 55th celebration welcomes back Latifah for her second consecutive year as host. The actress and Grammy award-winning musician made her big-screen debut in filmmaker Spike Lee’s “Jungle Fever” in 1991 and followed up with the hit classic “Set It Off” in 1996. She currently stars in the CBS action series “The Equalizer.”

The ceremony will also honor poet and activist Amanda Gorman (“The Hill We Climb”) with the Chairman’s Award and costume designer June Ambrose (“Belly”) with the Vanguard Award during this year’s ceremony. The Chairman’s Award is given to those who “demonstrate exemplary public service and use of their distinct platforms to create agents of change.” Some of the previous recipients of the award were Samuel L. Jackson, Tyler Perry and U.S. Congressman John Lewis.

“The NAACP Image Awards is an important celebration for our community and industry every year,” NAACP CEO/President Derrick Johnson said in a statement. “We get the opportunity to highlight the major accomplishments of artists, writers, entertainers, activists and other change makers that push Black excellence forward in a powerful way.”

Amanda Gorman (Left), June Ambrose (Right) -- (Getty Images)
Amanda Gorman (Left), June Ambrose (Right) — (Getty Images)

Ambrose will receive the Vanguard Award, which recognizes the work of people who work to increase awareness around racial and social issues. Model and activist Bethann Hardison was given the award in 2023. Ambrose is set to accept her award at the Image Awards’ Fashion Show on Friday, March 15.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with groundbreaking megastar Queen Latifah and are elated to welcome her again as this year’s host! We also look forward to honoring changemaker and poet Amanda Gorman and fashion icon June Ambrose for their tremendous impact on culture,” BET’s Connie Orlando said in a statement. “Queen Latifah, NAACP, and Pastis have been such incredible partners in amplifying Black culture, excellence, creativity, and ingenuity, and this year’s unforgettable show will be no different.”

"The Color Purple"

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