Berklee Legacy Award

Berklee's Plan for Social Justice includes recognition of artistic achievement by Black artists who received a Berklee honorary doctorate and/or devoted time, wisdom, and mentorship to members of the Berklee community. To this end, we are creating the Berklee Legacy Award.  

To acknowledge extraordinary achievement, the Berklee Legacy Award committee will initiate a program to recognize an exemplary group of Black artists by naming space on Berklee’s campus and celebrating their artistry. These are the criteria for nominating recipients for the Legacy Award: 

  1. Artistic Excellence: Candidates will have achieved the highest level of artistry and creativity, inspiring the world through performance, production, technology, business, education, and other areas. 
  2. Recognition by Berklee: Berklee will have recognized their extraordinary accomplishments by bestowing an honorary degree or similar acknowledgment of achievement.
  3. Contribution of Time and Talent: Candidates will have devoted time and attention to the Berklee community, particularly to students. 
  4. Shared Values: Candidates will personify Berklee's fundamental values.

2021 Berklee Legacy Awards

This year, the inaugural Berklee Legacy Awards honored Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, Joseph Douglass, and Carmen de Lavallade. Berklee recognized these four legendary artists with named spaces on its Boston campus.

Watch a recording of the Berklee Legacy Award inaugural ceremony on April 30:


The award committee welcomes nominations from the Berklee community for the awards. Submissions can be made to Sean Skeete at

Berklee Legacy Award Committee 

Sean Skeete (chair)
Prince Charles Alexander
Maureen Hickey
Cindy Albert Link
Mila Thigpen
Jackson Grove (student)
Evan Menifee (student)