2022 Jacksonville Image Awards postponed due to COVID-19 case spike

It was all smiles Feb. 29 at the inaugural Jacksonville Image Awards held at the Ritz Theater, which celebrate pioneers in the African American community. (WJXT 2020)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The in-person ceremony portion of the 2022 Jacksonville Image Awards will be postponed until the third quarter of the year due to a massive rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in Northeast Florida.

“After careful reflection, WCWJ CW17 has decided to postpone the Jacksonville Image Awards originally slated for February 5, 2022. The health and welfare of those in our community remain of utmost importance,” said Terri Walton-Cope, WJXT & WCWJ Vice President and General Manager. “Given the surge surrounding the Omicron variant, holding the show with a live audience contains too many risks. We look forward to celebrating the Jacksonville Image Awards at a future date when we will host the annual gala in-person with everyone’s health and safety being our top priority.”

RELATED: Latest COVID-19 information

The third-annual celebration of achievement in the local African American community was originally slated to commence with a live awards ceremony at the Lazzara Performance Hall at the University of North Florida’s Fine Arts Center on Saturday, Feb. 5. That gathering will move to sometime between July and September if case numbers decrease dramatically. If an in-person event cannot be held at that time, the awards show will go virtual as it did in early 2021.

A full refund will be given to those who already purchased a ticket to the February event. A representative from WCWJ CW 17 will contact you by email with more information.

Here are your Jacksonville Image Awards finalists. (Voting has closed):

The ‘Trailblazer’ Award: Recognizes pioneers who inspire others to follow their path to greatness with innovative ideas that challenge the status quo.

  • Finalists: Adrienne Martin, Ben Frazier, Hannah Hall

The ‘One to Watch’ Award presented by Johnson & Johnson Vision: This award recognizes individuals who are quickly establishing themselves and making an impact in their particular field or industry.

  • Finalists: Douglas Bryant, Dr. Kimberly Allen, Rebecca Davis

The ‘Be the Change, Be Yourself’ Award: This award recognizes individuals who, having succeeded against immense odds, herald change and prosperity to enhance and enrich the world. They overcome obstacles to show that, through hard work and humility, societal change is possible.

  • Finalists: Angela Harris, James Coleman, Shara Mondy

The ‘Music Excellence’ Award: This award recognizes individuals for their exceptional achievements in music, having made a tremendous impact with their creative works that have helped shape the local music scene.

  • Finalists: John Lumpkin, KuRonde Washington, Meachum Clarke

The ‘Innovator Award’ presented by VyStar Credit Union: This award recognizes individuals who creatively challenge the norm by introducing mainstream culture to avant-garde ideas and making a social impact in their respective industries.

  • Finalists: Dr. Cynthia Smith, Janae Bosquet-Wright, Maxie Coleman

The ‘Education Excellence’ Award: This award recognizes outstanding commitment to the academic development and improvement of a system or community to enhance the lives of future generations.

  • Finalists: Gail Lewis, Jennifer Robinson, Dr. Rudy Jamison

The ‘Pinnacle Award’ presented by The Porter Firm: This award recognizes those who have achieved professional accomplishments throughout an extensive career and are role models for others to attain similar success.

  • Finalists: Dee Wilcox, U.S. Navy (Ret.) Lt. Cmdr. Herlena Washington, Dr. Leon Haley

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