BET to honor top Black executives during ‘Soul Train Weekend’ festivities

Apollo Theater CEO Jonelle Procope and BET exec Louis Carr will be among those honored at the 'Leading with Soul' luncheon.

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BET announced that it will be holding its inaugural Soul Train Weekend, which will run in conjunction with Saturday’s Soul Train Awards. Included in the festivities is a celebration of Black executives who have served their respective communities, according to a press release.

The Soul Train Weekend will take place Nov. 19-21 as a multi-platform slate of events. The first event is a Friday luncheon entitled “Leading With Soul,” giving honors to five executives for their “meaningful work and leadership.”

“We are excited to honor powerhouse leaders advancing their businesses and communities by following their purpose and soul at our inaugural Leading with Soul Luncheon,” said Kimberly Paige, EVP & Chief Marketing Officer at BET in the release. “BET continues to use its many platforms and reach to spotlight Black excellence. It is fitting to kick off our ‘Soul Train Awards’ weekend in celebration of executives at the forefront, doing the work that ignites positive change in our community.” 

Hosted by media personality Tai Beauchamp, the luncheon will include a ceremony in which the Legacy Award is given to Louis Carr, founder of the Blueprint Summit for modern Black men and longtime BET veteran, whose work has generated more than $8 billion in revenue for the network over the course of 35 years.

BET Soul Train Awards
(Credit: BET)

Sisters Cheryl McKissack Daniel and Deryl McKissack will receive the Black Business Icon Award for building and growing a business that uplifts Black and Brown people of the community. The two founded the country’s oldest women & minority-owned professional design and construction firm, McKissack & McKissack.

Esi Egleston Bracey will receive the Corporate Champion Award. Leader of the multi-billion-dollar personal care portfolio for Unilever North America, Bracey is being awarded for using her “executive position to champion community issues.”

Finally, receiving a Community Hero Award is Apollo Theater’s President and CEO, Jonelle Procope. Helping lead the World Famous Harlem performance venue’s transition into a non-for-profit organization, she’s getting her honor for being a beacon for the arts and community advocacy.

Tisha Campbell and Tichina Arnold
Tisha Campbell (L) and Tichina Arnold perform during the 2019 Soul Train Awards at the Orleans Arena on November 17, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images)

The centerpiece of the weekend is the annual Soul Train Awards, taking place at the Apollo Theater for the first time in the event’s history. The ceremony will be hosted by Tisha Campbell and Tichina Arnold for the fourth year in a row and will air on BET Nov. 28. Maxwell and Ashanti will be special honorees for the Legacy and Lady of Soul Awards, respectively.

Rounding out the weekend on Sunday, BET is inviting all of New York City to participate in a large-scale Soul Train line. The iconic dance showcase derived from the titular TV series. It will be a world-record attempt for the largest Soul Train line.

On Friday and Saturday, a Soul Bus will drive throughout Harlem, Brooklyn and Queens equipped with a Soul Train 50th Anniversary Prize Wheel and Soul Train Scramble board. The Soul Train Award-branded Sprinter will be packed with special prizes and experiences, including some Soul Train Awards swag and gift cards for Black-owned restaurants.

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