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Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards Performers Announced

Grammy-nominated Mali Music and Others to Share Their Greatness

Awards to Take Place at the Louisville Marriott Downtown on Saturday, September 17th

***Editor’s Note***
Photos of the awardees, presenters and host will be sent upon request.
Credential requests due September 12th. Apply online here or by fax.

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (September 6, 2016) — Grammy-nominated artist Mali Music, the first inspirational artist in BET’s “Music Matters” series, will perform his highly-acclaimed song “Beautiful” at the fourth annual Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards. Other performers adding greatness and variety to the event include CJ Vanston, Teddy Abrams, and others. The awards will be held on Saturday, September 17th at the Louisville Marriott Downtown in Louisville, Ky, and will include tributes throughout the evening for Muhammad Ali, who passed away on June 3, 2016. Previously announced award recipients include Cindy Hensley McCain, Jon Secada, Louis Gossett, Jr., Sheryl Lee Ralph, Kentucky’s own John Rosenberg, and six young humanitarians from around the world. FUSION will serve as the exclusive media partner for this year’s awards.

Performance line-up includes:

  • Mali Music, Bystorm Entertainment/RCA Records singer/songwriter
  • CJ Vanston, a Hollywood-based film composer, record producer, songwriter, keyboardist, and music director for Spinal Tap
  • Michael Fitzpatrick, a cello soloist who performed at the historic meeting of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Muhammad Ali
  • Teddy Abrams and friends, the conductor of the Louisville Orchestra
  • The Humanity Passport Project Greater Community Choir, founded by Ambassador Shabazz

Michael Fitzpatrick and CJ Vanston, as well as Teddy Abrams, will be performing new original works created for the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards and in honor of Muhammad Ali’s legacy.

This charitable event of celebration and recognition will honor individuals from around the world.

Previously announced 2016 Humanitarian Awardees are:

Cindy Hensley McCain, philanthropist and businesswoman, will receive the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Jon Secada, Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter, and philanthropist, will receive the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian of the Year Award.

Louis Gossett, Jr., Academy Award winning actor and humanitarian, will receive the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award for Education.

Sheryl Lee Ralph, Broadway, big screen, TV actress and philanthropist, will receive the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award for Global Citizenship.

John Rosenberg, founding director of the Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky, will receive the 2016 Muhammad Ali Kentucky Humanitarian Award.

Craig Melvin, from NBC News and MSNBC, will emcee the awards.

Six Core Principle Awardees

Each year, six young people, 30 years and younger, are honored with an award aligning with the Six Core Principles that Muhammad Ali embraced throughout his life: Confidence, Conviction, Dedication, Giving, Respect and Spirituality.

The 2016 recipients of the Core Principle Awards are:

Josh Nesbit, Waterford, Virginia will receive the Confidence award.

Shawana Shah, Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan will receive the Conviction award.

Curt Bowen, Boise, Idaho will receive the Dedication award.

Jakob Schillinger, Tuebingen, Germany will receive the Giving award.

Tina Hovsepian, Los Angeles, California will receive the Respect award.

Navonel Voni Glick, Tel Aviv, Israel will receive the Spirituality award.

For more information about all of the awardees, please click here.


This year’s Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards are supported by: YUM! Brands Foundation, Brown-Forman Corporation, LG&E and KU Energy, Horseshoe Southern Indiana, Harold C. Schott Foundation, Tandem PR & Marketing, Ashbourne Farms and River Bend Farm.

Tickets and Table Sponsorships

Tickets to the awards can be purchased through September 9th via the Ali Center’s website or by contacting Kelly Watson at or 502.992.5338. For more information, visit here.

About the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards

The fourth annual Muhammad Ali Humanitarian awards will take place on September 17th, 2016 at the Louisville Marriott Downtown in Louisville, Kentucky USA. This charitable event of celebration and recognition will honor individuals around the world who have made significant contributions toward the attainment of peace, social justice, or other positive actions pertaining to human or social capital. In addition to awards presented to seasoned humanitarians, six young people, 30 years or younger, are honored with an award for each of Muhammad’s Six Core Principles: Confidence, Conviction, Dedication, Giving, Respect, and Spirituality. This event is the premiere annual fundraiser for the Muhammad Ali Center.

Through impactful journalism and smart commentary, FUSION covers the stories that matter to the new, rising American mainstream. FUSION content is available to audiences across a broad range of platforms including cable television (channel listings),, various OTT providers and social media platforms. Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and YouTube. FUSION will be a part of the recently announced Fusion Media Group, a division of Univision Communications Inc.


The Muhammad Ali Center, a 501(c)3 corporation, was co-founded by Muhammad Ali and his wife Lonnie in their hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. The international cultural center promotes the six core principles of Muhammad Ali (Confidence, Conviction, Dedication, Giving, Respect, and Spirituality) in ways that inspire personal and global greatness and provides programming and events around the focus areas of education, gender equity, and global citizenship. Its newest initiative, Generation Ali, fosters a new generation of leaders to contribute positively to their communities and to change the world for the better. The Center’s headquarters also contains an award-winning museum experience. For more information, please visit