We were on the red carpet at the EBONY Power 100 Gala where we captured some exclusive interviews with some of Hollywood’s most powerful celebrities. Watch our exclusive interviews below with Kat Graham, Ricky Whittle and many more!
Some of Hollywood’s biggest names from film and television joined more than 600 guests to celebrate today’s community champions and industry titans from across the country at the annual EBONY Power 100 Gala, presented by Nationwide, at the Beverly Wilshire in Los Angeles on Friday, Nov. 30.
Our exclusive interviews
Taja V. Simpson:
Ernie Hudson & Darrin Henson:
The annual EBONY Power 100 List recognizes the most influential and inspiring individuals from a broad spectrum of industry genres, across eight categories: Community Crusaders, Disruptors, Entertainment & Arts, Entrepreneurs, Innovators, MVPs, Power Players and the coveted Women Up category. Hundreds of guests descended on Beverly Hills for the EBONY Power 100 Gala, honoring those recognized in each category, for the star-studded spectacle attended by the who’s who in sports, entertainment, business, philanthropy, politics and social activism—hosted by internationally acclaimed actor and comedian Chris Tucker.
Following the introduction of actor Chris Tucker as the evening’s host, opening remarks were given by EBONY Media Operations Chairman EmeritusLinda Johnson Rice. Angela Bretz from Nationwide proceeded to introduce a heartfelt video about the legacy of EBONY Power 100. EBONY Media Operations Chairman and CEO Michael Gibson presented the inaugural EBONY Chairman’s Award to former BET Chairman and CEO Debra Leefor her contribution to the broadcast industry. Susan Kelechi Watson and Melanie Liburd, actors from the hit TV show “This Is Us,” presented the honorees in the Women Up category, the first for the night, after which Motown Records President Ethiopia Habtemariam proudly introduced the first label performance by JAMESDAVIS that struck a musical chord with the capacity crowd, who enjoyed their first dinner course while listening to the soul-rock fusion tracks performed by the three siblings.
The evening progressed with highly anticipated presentations of the remaining honorees in each of the eight categories that form the EBONY Power 100 List. Gathering Spot’s Ryan Wilson and TK Petersen presented the honorees video for the Disruptors category; Senior Vice President, Retirement Plans Distribution at Nationwide Eric Stevenson presented the honorees video for the Community Crusaders category; actor and comedian J.B. Smoove presented the honorees video for the Entrepreneurs category; Managing Director of Labor Relations & Legal Strategy for United AirlinesJessica Kimbrough presented the honorees video for the Innovators category; Vice Chairman of Ebony Media Operations Willard Jackson presented the honorees video for the MVPs category; Lexus Advertising Manager Bruce Hines presented the honorees video for the Entertainment and Artscategory, and EBONY Media Operations Chairman and CEO Michael Gibson returned to the stage to present the honorees video for the Power Players category. Linda Johnson Rice made a second appearance on stage to give a warm welcome speech for Motown Records President Ethiopia Habtemariam, who was presented with the prestigious EBONY Icon Award to commemorate the label’s diverse and historic artistry.
Motown Records General Manager Marc Byers appeared on stage to give an introduction to recording artist Ne-Yo, who graced the stage in a purple suit, complete with a foot brace that didn’t seem to hinder his exhilarating and unexpected four-track performance of his most popular tracks, including the hit single “Time of Our Lives.” The acclaimed artist was seen to weave among the seated gala guests, who stood and danced alongside his unrehearsed personal encounter. Following Chris Tucker’s closing remarks, guests made their way to the Nationwide Lounge to enjoy after-hours cocktails and classic beats by DJ Clark Kent. Chris Tucker was seen to be in a celebratory mood in the Terrace Room, while singing aloud to classic Motown tracks, as guests and celebrities alike danced with each other into the early hours.
In celebration of those whose work and heroism continue to inspire and influence society, the publication announced its 2018 EBONY Power 100 List in October. For more than 30 years, the EBONY Power 100 List has been curated by the editors of EBONY magazine and its staff, and is determined by the work, accomplishments and influential reach of each of the honorees. The complete 2018 EBONY Power 100 List can be viewed by visiting www.ebony.com/power100-2018