Akon is one of the most gifted and iconic artists in contemporary urban music today. A Grammy-nominated, two-time multi-platinum selling musical artist, producer, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Akon holds a place in industry history as one of music's most influential voices. He's had an impressive 27 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 and is the first artist to simultaneously hold both the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on the industry gold standard list of the current most popular songs in the country. He has collaborated with over 150 industry greats, including Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Eminem, Gwen Stefani, Lionel Richie and Snoop Dogg. Akon co-wrote Lady Gaga's hit song "Just Dance" and has produced numerous records for other artists.
And there is much more to Akon than music. Born in America to Senegalese natives, Akon developed a love for Senegal and desired to help its youth. In 2007, he launched the Konfidence Foundation, dedicated to providing Senegalese youth with education resources and access to health services. He used his money from touring to build an elementary school there.
In 2014, he co-founded "Akon Lighting Africa," which currently brings solar powered electricity to the homes of over 600 million people in more than 11 countries in rural Africa. He has also launched the Solar Academy in Bamako, Mali, where engineers will be taught how to develop solar power. Akon's light is spreading from Africa and across the seas. He has teamed up with government officials in several Latin American countries, including Brazil, to bring electricity to needy homes.
For his superior talent, many musical attributes and achievements, as well as his philanthropic efforts, which resonate from Mama Africa to the world, the BET Awards salutes Akon with the BET International 2016 Global Good Award!
(Photo: Jimmy Fontaine for Atlantic Records)