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NAB Leadership Foundation to Honor Patti LaBelle

Patti LaBelle
Patti LaBelle (Image credit: NAB)

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Award-winning entertainer, author and entrepreneur Patti LaBelle will receive the Service to America Leadership Award from the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation (NABLF) during the Celebration of Service to America Awards on June 7 at The Anthem in Washington, D.C. 

LaBelle joins chef and humanitarian José Andrés as a recipient of this year’s Service to America Leadership Award, NABLF’s highest individual citation that is presented in recognition of honorees’ commitment to advocacy and public service.

“Patti LaBelle has entertained countless audiences with her music, on the screen and on the stage,” said NABLF President Michelle Duke. “Her exquisite talents are equaled by her generous heart and decades of support for philanthropic causes. NABLF and America’s broadcasters are excited to celebrate her lifelong commitment to good works and community service.”

LaBelle began her career as the lead singer of Patti LaBelle and the Bluebelles, whose hits include the GRAMMY Hall of Fame inducted song, "Lady Marmalade." After launching a solo career, she achieved success with several best-selling and critically acclaimed albums, and won Best Female R&B Vocal Performance at the 1992 GRAMMY Awards and the GRAMMY Award for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Album in 1999. 

During her career, she has sold more than 50 million records worldwide, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame and been inducted into the Apollo Theater Legends Hall of Fame and the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

LaBelle's humanitarian work includes advocacy for adoption, foster care, Big Sisters, the United Negro College Fund and many other causes and non-profit initiatives. After losing her mother, three sisters and best friend to cancer and diabetes, LaBelle channeled her personal strife into promoting awareness of these diseases, including becoming a spokesperson for the American Diabetes Association following her diagnosis in 1994.

LaBelle was honored by GLAAD in 2007 with an Excellence in Media Award for her longtime support of gay and lesbian rights and participation in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

In her acting career, LaBelle starred in the NBC television sitcom “Out All Night” and hosted her own lifestyle and cooking shows, “Living It Up with Patti LaBelle” and “Patti LaBelle's Place.” She has starred in a number of popular films and television programs and was a contestant on hit shows “Dancing with the Stars” and “The Masked Singer.” She also starred in Broadway productions of “Your Arms Too Short to Box with God,” “Fela” and “After Midnight.”

In 2007, she introduced Patti’s Good Life, a successful food and lifestyle brand. LaBelle has authored six books and recently released a 20th anniversary edition of her New York Times bestseller, "LaBelle Cuisine: Recipes to Sing About."

Previous recipients of the Service to America Leadership Award include “Hamilton” creator and star Lin-Manuel Miranda, award-winning-artist John Legend, multi-platform country music star Sara Evans and Grammy-winning musician Jon Bon Jovi. Esteemed chef and humanitarian José Andrés will also receive a Service to America Leadership Award at this year’s Celebration of Service to America Awards ceremony.

The Celebration of Service to America Awards will also honor local television and radio stations and broadcast groups across the country for their public service and philanthropic efforts to help their communities throughout the year. NABLF will also honor GEICO with the Corporate Leadership Award in recognition of its decades of work supporting initiatives and building partnerships within the communities the company serves.

A special one-hour production of the awards ceremony will once again be broadcast nationally on television and radio stations and digital platforms in summer 2022 

More information about the awards and event is available at servicetoamericaawards.org (opens in new tab).  

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.