Last night BET aired their annual “BET Honors” awards show in which they pay homage to trailblazers in music, entertainment, education, theater, service, and the media. This year’s honorees were an eclectic mix of seasoned Hollywood veterans, and behind the scenes power players.

The night kicked off with a lively tribute to legendary model and philanthropist, Iman. African singer Angelique Kidjoe and the cast of the Broadway musical Fela! lit up the stage, paying tribute to the Somali-born icon who has been working to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa.

Next, Ne-Yo took the stage to honor Johnson Publishing Co. Chairwoman, Linda Johnson Rice. Rice has been at the helm of Johnson Publishing, which produces Ebony and Jet, since 1987 and has continuously grown it into a multi-national company worth over $300 million.

Other honorees included jazz impresario Herbie Hancock, world-renowned historian and educator Lonnie Bunch III, iconic actress Cicely Tyson, and singer/actor Jamie Foxx.

Not only was the show filled with inspiring speeches by the honorees (Cicely Tyson turned it OUT), but also some hot performances. Singers Lalah Hathaway, Tank, Keyshia Cole, Yolanda Adams, 90s group Guy and celebrated musicians Jimmy Jam and Chick Corea were on hand to honor this year’s recipients.

(check out Natural 7’s performance honoring Herbie Hancock)

Gabrielle Union, who kept the crowd laughing, and guessing about what she’d wear next, hosted this year’s BET Honors awards presentation.

BET Honors not only highlights the achievements of the honorees, but also serves as a beacon of light to show exactly what can be accomplished with hard work and a fierce commitment to your dreams.

What did you think of this year’s BET Honors? Who would you like to see honored next year?

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