By Cherri Gregg
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Mayor Michael Nutter today announced that singer Jon Bon Jovi is the 2014 recipient of the city’s Marian Anderson Award.
He’ll join a prestigious list that includes Oprah Winfrey and Sidney Poitier.
Mayor Nutter today accompanied the board of the Anderson Awards to reveal an enlarged photo of the rock star during ceremonies at the Sofitel Hotel, in center city.
Awards chair Nina Tinari says the board changed the selection criteria this year to emphasize the candidates’ humanitarian impact in the Philadelphia region.
“Jon Bon Jovi is not just nationally recognized, but he’s also placed a great local emphasis on helping our community here in Philadelphia,” she noted.
Tinari says that Marian Anderson used her art as a platform for activism and Bon Jovi has used his international fame to help battle both HIV/AIDS and homelessness.
Through his Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, the Grammy winner has helped build housing for hundreds of low-income families, including at JBJ Homes, right here in Philadelphia (see related story).
The Marian Anderson Awards has raised more than $500,000 to help young artists in the Philadelphia area.
The awards gala and ceremony will be on November 18th, and is sponsored by Peco, Wells Fargo Bank, and other companies.