NAACP Honors Cicely Tyson with Spingarn Medal, Wraps Up Convention

NAACP presented its 95th Spingarn Medal to Academy Award-nominee and Emmy-winning actress Cicely Tyson as it wrapped up the 101st annual convention in Kansas City Thursday.

“Cicely Tyson’s contributions to African American arts and culture in both acting and modeling are unprecedented and inspiring. Not only was Ms. Tyson a brilliant and groundbreaking actress but she was a stalwart supporter of human and civil rights for all Americans,” said NAACP Chairman Roslyn M. Brock when Tyson was named as the medalist in April.

“Her portrayals in masterpieces such as the Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, Roots, and King,among others, were simply dynamic, and the role she has played as a human rights leader and trailblazer in the arts is invaluable,” Brock continued.

Other Spingarn medalists include Maya Angelou, Dr. Ben Carson, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Colin Powell, Oprah Winfrey and Leontyne Price.

The convention, which began July 10 and concluded Thursday, was a star-studded affair that featured presentations from first lady Michelle Obama, actor Blair Underwood and more.

The NAACP, which bills itself as the nation’s oldest, largest and most widely-recognized grassroots organization, also took the opportunity to denounce what officials called racism in the Tea Party political group and schedule a march on Washington in October to highlight social inequalities intensified by the recession.