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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 August 2006, 08:27 GMT 09:27 UK
Soul star Franklin to be honoured
Aretha Franklin
Franklin was the first woman in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Soul legend Aretha Franklin is to become the first woman to receive the Award of Excellence from the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) in the US.

Franklin, 64, is being honoured for her work with the fund to help students access higher education, as well as for other activism and charity work.

UNCF president Michael Lomax said its member colleges aspired to Franklin's "standard of excellence".

The singer's hits include Respect and I Say A Little Prayer.

She became one of the most successful global music stars in the late 1960s, achieving 10 top 10 hits in the US over an 18-month period.


Franklin has won 17 Grammy awards and last November received the highest civilian honour in the US, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

She will collect her latest award in September at the UNCF's An Evening of Stars, a telethon recorded in Hollywood for broadcast nationwide in January.

The fund has previously bestowed its Award of Excellence on music legends Stevie Wonder and Quincy Jones and the man who established the UNCF's annual telethon, Lou Rawls.

Mr Lomax said Franklin's career had "established a standard of excellence that exemplifies the educational distinction to which our member colleges are dedicated and to which they hold their students".

Singer Franklin awarded US medal
10 Nov 05 |  Entertainment
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25 Mar 04 |  Entertainment
Aretha Franklin: Queen of soul
23 Mar 04 |  Entertainment
Aretha wins respect
14 Sep 98 |  Entertainment


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