Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Acclaimed Director, Writer and Actor Tyler Perry Donates One Million Dollars to the NAACP


Gift is the Largest Received from an Individual Entertainer in the NAACP’s History

The NAACP, the country’s oldest and largest civil rights organization, announced yesterday that acclaimed film director Tyler Perry has donated one million dollars, marking the largest gift ever given by an individual entertainer. In addition, Perry purchased several NAACP commissioned Jacob Lawrence lithographs and additional lithographs by celebrated artists Jonathan Green, Elizabeth Catlett and Sam Gilliam. The gift, which will be distributed over the next four years, was made to commemorate the organization’s Centennial anniversary.

“We are honored that Tyler Perry chose to support the NAACP,” said Julian Bond, Chairman of the NAACP. “Tyler is a courageous pioneer in bringing positive images of African American culture and struggles to the screen. His remarkable journey from poverty and childhood abuse to become one of the world’s most successful filmmakers and entrepreneurs is an inspiration to us all,” Bond said.

“Tyler Perry exemplifies an unyielding commitment to uplifting and bringing hope to the disenfranchised and those less fortunate,” stated Benjamin Todd Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP, “Both in his films and in his life, he reflects an impressive ethos of caring and conscientiousness. We are deeply grateful for his support.”

“I feel so honored and blessed to be in a position where I can give to the NAACP.” Perry said. “Had it not been for the perseverance and vision of the thousands who came before me in the 100 years of this legendary organization, I would not be in the position I am in today. I continue to be thankful for the tireless work of the NAACP, and I am proud to be able to help in their mission to fight for the equality of all people, and to work towards the elimination of discrimination against race.”

“This is a paradigm shifting moment in black philanthropy. Here is a civil rights organization that is receiving a donation that is usually targeted only at education or cultural institutions. Tyler Perry is setting a high standard for others to follow,” said Maxim Thorne, Senior Vice President of the NAACP.

“The generous gift by Tyler Perry will be used to support our Second Century Society advocacy programs on economic equality, education, health care and criminal justice” stated Benjamin Todd Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP.

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