Mfume Moves To Bring Image Award Nominating Process Completely In-House

Kweisi Mfume, President and CEO, of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in late January said that he will ask the organization's national Board of Directors to place the NAACP Image Awards nominating process under the complete control of the association for the first time in the 35-year history of the awards program.

"It continues to concern me that every now and then an Image Award nomination is put forth that fails to meet the high standards for positive, constructive images on which the program was originally created,"said Mfume. "Part of the reason for this is that the NAACP does not totally control the nominating process but is held totally responsible for all of the nominations."

Image Award nominees are chosen by a committee of 300. Of this group 150 are NAACP members and the other 150 are members of the television, recording, movie and publishing industry. "Sometimes some of the people outside of the NAACP who vote to select the initial list of nominees for the Image Awards do not necessarily see things the way we do with respect to image,"said Mfume. "It's important from this point on that Image Award nominees be totally selected by the NAACP in order to insure that they reflect the standards for which the award was created"

More than 1,100 entries were submitted for the 35th Image Awards. From that number, the Committee of 300 nominated five finalists in each of 35 categories. It is only after that process that NAACP members vote in a secret ballot to choose the final winners who are announced during the taping of the annual Image Awards program on March 6. The special program airs on FOX television at 8 pm. on March 11.

The NAACP strives to honor individuals who are committed to being the best in their field and are committed to advancing the participation of people of color. The NAACP Board of Directors in its policy setting role could accept Mfume's recommendation and vote to change the nomination process during its next meeting on February 21.

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