NAACP Image Awards: Sherri Shepherd, Kym Whitley Win on Night One

Sherri Shepherd and Kym Whitley won NAACP Image Awards for their podcast "Two Funny Mamas." (Credit: YouTube)

The 53rd NAACP Image Awards kicked off Monday night with the first round of non-televised honors being announced.

On night one, winners were revealed in the literary, podcast, and youth activist categories.

Among those receiving awards were Nikole Hannah-Jones for Outstanding Literary Work – Nonfiction category; Will Smith for Outstanding Literary Work – Autobiography; “Blindspot: Tulsa Burning” for Outstanding Podcast (News & Information); Sherri Shepherd and Kym Whitley’s “Two Funny Mamas” for Outstanding Podcast; and as previously announced Channing Hill, NAACP Chapter President of Howard University, received the Youth Activist of The Year honor.

The week-long  virtual awards run from Feb. 21-25, honoring outstanding achievements and performances of people of color across more than 80 competitive categories. The virtual awards can be seen at and the Image Awards YouTube channel.

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The non-televised awards program is hosted nightly by actor and comedian Affion Crockett. The televised show will be hosted by seven-time NAACP Image Awards winner Anthony Anderson. The telecast airs on Saturday, Feb. 26 at 8:00 PM ET/ 5:00 PM PT on BET.

Below is the full list of night one winners.

Outstanding Literary Work – Fiction
“Long Division” – Kiese Laymon

Outstanding Literary Work – Non-Fiction
“The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story” – Nikole Hannah-Jones

Outstanding Literary Work – Debut Author
“Just As I Am” – Cicely Tyson

Outstanding Literary Work – Biography/ Autobiography
“Will” – Will Smith

Outstanding Literary Work – Instructional
“Feeding the Soul (Because It’s My Business)” – Tabitha Brown

Outstanding Literary Work – Poetry
“Perfect Black”- Crystal Wilkinson

Outstanding Literary Work – Children
“Stacey’s Extraordinary Words” – Stacey Abrams, Kitt Thomas

Outstanding Literary Work – Youth/Teens
“Ace of Spades”- Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé

Outstanding Podcast – News and Information
Blindspot: “Tulsa Burning”

Outstanding Podcast – Arts and Entertainment
“Jemele Hill is Unbothered”

Outstanding Podcast – Society and Culture
“Jemele Hill is Unbothered”

Outstanding Podcast – Lifestyle / Self-Help
“Two Funny Mamas” – Sherri Shepherd & Kym Whitley

Special Award: Youth Activist of The Year
Channing Hill