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Usher, Jerome Bettis Announced for 18th Annual Ford Freedom Awards

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18th Ford Freedom Awards

Ford Motor Company has announced its latest collaboration with the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in its Men of Courage campaign: the 18th annual Ford Freedom Awards, which takes place May 17th from 6-9 pm at the Max M. & Majorie S. Fisher Music Center in Detroit.

Today’s announcement revealed this year’s Ford Freedom Award honoree, late Wall Street lawyer and philanthropist Reginald F. Lewis, and Ford Freedom Award Scholar, NBA Hall of Famer and 62nd mayor of Detroit Dave Bing. Other award recipients include former NFL player Kerlin Blaise and student activist Jonathan Butler.

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This year will also see the inauguration of the People’s Choice Ford Courage Award, which is being given to New York Times best-seller Shaka Senghor, who won the award through a contest announced as part of the Men of Courage Project earlier this year.

“Ford is proud to join the Wright Museum in saluting the positive contributions of African American men,” said Ziad Ojakli, group vice president, government and community relations, Ford Motor Company. “Their leadership through family, business and philanthropy has been felt throughout American communities. They are true unsung heroes, and we are proud to honor such a diverse and accomplished group of men this year.”

Also announced for this year’s ceremony are performances from Angie Stone, Doug E. Fresh, The Voice’s Avery Wilson, and tap-dancing troupe Syncopated Ladies. Usher and NFL Hall of Famer Jerome Bettis have also been announced as presenters.

Tickets are available for $50 per person and $150 for platinum VIP reception tickets, which net a complete red carpet experience. To learn more, visit

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