Jay-Z will receive the President's Award during the 50th NAACP Image Awards on Saturday.
The NAACP announced Thursday it selected the 49-year-old rapper and entrepreneur for "shedding light on the issues that plague the black community including systematic racism and unjust treatment under the law."
Previous recipients have included Jesse Jackson, Muhammad Ali and Condoleezza Rice.
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Jay-Z, whose real name is Shawn Carter, was the first hip-hop artist inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He and his wife, Beyonce, have three children.
Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters will receive the NAACP chairman's award and radio host Tom Joyner will be honored with the Vanguard Award.
The winners of the 50th NAACP Image Awards will be revealed during a TV One broadcast Saturday from the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.