Khan is the honoree at this year’s United Negro College Fund’s annual “An Evening of Stars,” which airs Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 29 and 30th, on more than 40 stations nationwide.
Khan will receive the organization’s Award of Excellence for her work with young people. Previous recipients include Lionel Richie (2010), Patti LaBelle (2009), Smokey Robinson (2008), Aretha Franklin (2007), Stevie Wonder (2006), Quincy Jones (2005) and Lou Rawls (2004).
“We recognize Chaka Khan not only as a dynamic and creative singer-songwriter and one of the leading talents of her generation, but also for her commitment to education, both through her generous support for UNCF and through the work of the Chaka Khan Foundation,” said Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., UNCF president and CEO. “Honoring her with our Award of Excellence celebrates not only her accomplishments in the entertainment industry, but also her dedication to helping minority students earn the college degrees they need and our nation needs them to have.”
The two-hour special will feature performances by Stevie Wonder, El DeBarge, Ginuwine, Melanie Fiona, Faith Evans, Fantasia, Bettye LaVette, Angie Stone, Ledisi, Estelle and Herbie Hancock and appearances by Tom Joyner, Quincy Jones, “Access Hollywood’”s Shaun Robinson, Mo’Nique, Akon, Boris Kodjoe and Nicole Ari Parker, LeVar Burton, Taraji P. Henson, Soledad O’Brien, “Glee’s” Amber Riley, Bobb’e J. Thompson and Lauren Vélez.
Mary J. Blige will make a special taped appearance.
Khan is also performing her signature song “Through the Fire” on BET’s “Celebration of Gospel” on Sunday, Jan. 30th at 8 p.m. Other performers include Whitney Houston, Kim Burrell, Mary Mary, Kirk Franklin, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Smokie Norful and the Rance Allen Group.