2020 BET Awards: Beyoncé accepts Humanitarian Award from Michelle Obama

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Kayleigh Dray
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Beyonce Black Is King

“We have to vote like our life depends on it, because it does,” says Beyoncé.

Girls may run the world, but who helps those girls? Beyoncé.

At the 2020 BET Awards, the singer and activist was presented with the prestigious Humanitarian Award, in honour of her many initiatives that help those in need.

And who better to present said award than the iconic Michelle Obama?

“I am here to talk about The Queen,” Obama said in a video presentation. “You know the one!”

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Obama continued: “Ever since she was a little girl in Houston, Beyoncé Knowles Carter has been lighting up the stages and gracing the world with her talent, with her generosity of spirit and with her love for her community.”

“You can see it in everything she does. From her music that gives voice to Black joy and Black pain, to her activism that demands justice for Black Lives.

“And no matter how big the stages get, I know my girl isn’t satisfied unless she’s sharing all that shine she has with the next generation.”

The Becoming author finished by saying: “[Beyoncé’s] always turning up, looking out, and making us all a little bigger, better, a little more fierce.”

“So to my girl, I just want to say, you inspire me. You inspire all of us, which is why I am so proud to name Beyonce the 2020 BET Awards’ Humanitarian of the Year honoree. 

“Congratulations, girl. Love you so much.”

Beyoncé, as you can see in the video above, dedicated her award to activists and protesters around the country.

“I want to dedicate this award to all of my brothers out there, all of my sisters out there inspiring me, marching and fighting for change. Your voices are being heard and you’re proving to our ancestors that their struggles were not in vain,” she said.

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Beyoncé ended the speech urging voter participation. “I’m encouraging you to continue to take action, continue to work to change a racist and unequal system. We have to continue to do this together.”

“We have to vote like our life depends on it, because it does.”

The full list of BET Awards 2020 nominees and winners:

Album of the Year

  • “Cuz I Love You,” Lizzo
  • “Fever,” Megan Thee Stallion
  • “Homecoming: The Live Album,” Beyoncé
  • “I Used to Know Her,” H.E.R.
  • “Kirk, “DaBaby
  • WINNER: “Please Excuse Me For Being Antisocial,” Roddy Ricch 

Best Female R&B/Pop Artist

  • Beyoncé
  • H.E.R.
  • Jhene Aiko
  • Kehlani
  • WINNER: Lizzo 
  • Summer Walker

Best Male R&B/Pop Artist

  • Anderson .Paak
  • WINNER: Chris Brown
  • Jacquees
  • Khalid
  • The Weeknd
  • Usher

Best Group

  • Chloe x Halle
  • City Girls
  • EarthGang
  • Griselda
  • WINNER: Migos

Best Collaboration

  • WINNER: Chris Brown Ft. Drake, “No Guidance” 
  • DJ Khaled ft. Nipsey Hussle & John Legend, “Higher”
  • Future ft. Drake, “Life Is Good”
  • H.E.R. ft. YG, “Slide”
  • Megan Thee Stallion ft. Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla $ign, “Hot Girl Summer”
  • Wale ft. Jeremih, “On Chill”

Best Male Hip Hop Artist

  • WINNER: DaBaby 
  • Drake
  • Future
  • Lil Baby
  • Roddy Ricch
  • Travis Scott

Best Female Hip Hop Artist

  • Cardi B
  • Doja Cat
  • Lizzo
  • WINNER: Megan Thee Stallion 
  • Nicki Minaj
  • Saweetie

Video of the Year

  • Chris Brown Ft. Drake, “No Guidance”
  • DaBaby, “Bop”
  • WINNER: DJ Khaled ft. Nipsey Hussle & John Legend, “Higher” 
  • Doja Cat, “Say So”
  • Megan Thee Stallion ft. Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla $ign, “Hot Girl Summer”
  • Roddy Ricch, “The Box”

Video Director of the Year

  • Benny Boom
  • Cole Bennett
  • Dave Meyers
  • Director X
  • Eif Rivera
  • WINNER: Teyana “Spike Tee” Taylor 

Best New Artist

  • DaniLeigh
  • Lil Nas X
  • Pop Smoke
  • WINNER: Roddy Ricch 
  • Summer Walker
  • YBN Cordae

Dr. Bobby Jones Best Gospel/Inspirational

  • Fred Hammond, “Alright”
  • John P. Kee ft. Zacardi Cortez, “I Made It Out”
  • Kanye West, “Follow God”
  • WINNER: Kirk Franklin, “Just for Me” 
  • PJ Morton ft. Le’Andria Johnson & Mary Mary, “All In His Pain”
  • The Clark Sisters, “Victory”

Best Movie

  • Bad Boys for Life
  • Dolemite Is My Name
  • Harriet
  • Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé
  • Just Mercy
  • WINNER: Queen & Slim

Best Actress

  • Angela Bassett
  • Cynthia Erivo
  • WINNER: Issa Rae 
  • Regina King
  • Tracee Ellis Ross
  • Zendaya

Best Actor

  • Billy Porter
  • Eddie Murphy
  • Forest Whitaker
  • Jamie Foxx
  • WINNER: Michael B. Jordan 
  • Omari Hardwick

Young Stars Award

  • Alex Hibbert
  • Asante Blackk
  • Jahi Di’Allo Winston
  • WINNER: Marsai Martin 
  • Miles Brown
  • Storm Reid

Sportswoman of the Year

  • Ajeé Wilson
  • Claressa Shields
  • Coco Gauff
  • Naomi Osaka
  • Serena Williams
  • WINNER: Simone Biles 

Sportsman of the Year

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo
  • Kawhi Leonard
  • WINNER: LeBron James 
  • Odell Beckham Jr.
  • Patrick Mahomes II
  • Stephen Curry


  • Alicia Keys, “Underdog”
  • WINNER: Beyoncé ft. Blue Ivy, WizKid & Saint Jhn, “Brown Skin Girl” 
  • Ciara ft. Lupita Nyong’o, Ester Dean, City Girls & La La, “Melanin”
  • Layton Greene, “I Choose”
  • Lizzo ft. Missy Elliott, “Tempo”
  • Rapsody ft. PJ Morgan, “Afeni”

Viewer’s Choice Award

  • Chris Brown Ft. Drake, “No Guidance”
  • DaBaby, “Bop”
  • Future ft. Drake, “Life Is Good”
  • WINNER: Megan Thee Stallion ft. Nicki Minaj, “Hot Girl Summer” 
  • Roddy Ricch, “The Box”
  • The Weeknd, “Heartless”

Best International Act

  • WINNER: Burna Boy (Nigeria) 
  • Innoss’B (DRC)
  • Sho Madjozi (South Africa)
  • Dave (U.K.)
  • Stormzy (U.K.)
  • Ninho (France)
  • S.Pri Noir (France)

Viewer’s Choice: Best New International Act

  • Rema (Nigeria)
  • WINNER: SHA SHA (Zimbabwe) 
  • Celeste (U.K.)
  • Young T & Bugsey (U.K.)
  • Hatik (France)
  • Stacy (France)

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is Stylist’s digital editor-at-large. Her specialist topics include comic books, films, TV and feminism. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends.

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