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Karl Kani

Presented with the 2022 Pioneer Humanitarian Award

Recipient Background

Congratulations to KARL KANI for receiving the Pioneer Philanthropist Award at our 2022 Be Great! Humanitarian Awards.

At the age of 21, Karl founded his fashion brand that still has, which has a strong worldwide influence and is considered the godfather (pioneer) of urban streetwear. Raised in a modest home in Brooklyn, NY, he has spent more than two decades giving back to communities supporting children, athletics, inner-city programs, and communities of color. 

On September 17th, 1999, Karl Kani was the first black designer to present a fashion show at the White House during Afro-Latina and Black Caucus Convention week at the Afro-Latina Summit Briefing - a symposium highlighting issues affecting people of both African American and Latino descent. 

On July 7th, 2000, he was honored by LA’s former mayor Richard Riordan as part of LA’s Best program for successfully fulfilling his mission to protect and enrich the lives of the city’s most vulnerable children. 

In 2001, he sponsored the 9 SUNY Universities (State University of New York) by providing their athletic equipment (shoes, shorts, tops and sweatpants, during their basketball season) and has continued to sponsor annually. 

From 2010-2013, he was the main supporter of the Colin Powell/ Thurgood Marshall inner city youth program by presenting students with Kani apparel for their commitment to excellence in class. 

Currently, Karl Kani has partnered up to produce the 2022 E&J X Kani Mentorship Program.

2022 Humanitarian Award Honorees

king

Nika King

Social Impact Award

Leigh Steinberg

Legendary Philanthropist

guermo

Guillermo Díaz

Impact Award

Dr. Khalilah Camacho-Ali

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

Ever Matson

ROCKSTAR YOUTH AWARD

Karl Kani

PIONEER PHILANTHROPIST

Lady JB Owen

Pioneer Humanitarian

Sir Alec Stern

Exemplary Humanitarian

Jade Zaroff

Spirit Award

Dr. Cyndi Romine

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

Andy Arias

CRYSTAL AWARD

Eric Power

PATRIOT AWARD

Gavin Keilly

INNOVATION AWARD

Larry Namer

ICON HUMANITARIAN

Emily Lartigue

QUINTESSENTIAL HUMANITARIAN