John Legend

PopTech 2010

John Legend

Recording artist, concert performer, and philanthropist John Legend has won six Grammy awards and was named one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people.

He launched his career as a session player and vocalist, contributing to best-selling recordings by Lauryn Hill, Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, and Kanye West before recording his own unbroken chain of Top 10 albums: Get Lifted (2004), Once Again (2006), and Evolver (2008). His most recent album with The Roots titled Wake Up, was released in September. It includes his original composition “Shine,” which appears on the soundtrack to Waiting for Superman, a documentary about education directed by Davis Guggenheim which will be shown at PopTech.

Throughout his career, Legend has worked to make a difference in the lives of others. In 2007, he launched the Show Me Campaign, a grassroots movement whose mission is “to fight economic and spiritual poverty through fostering sustainable development at the individual, family, and small community levels.” Legend was awarded the 2010 BET Humanitarian Award, the 2009 CARE Humanitarian Award for Global Change, and the 2009 Bishop John T. Walker Distinguished Humanitarian Service Award by Africare.

Legend sits on the boards of the Education Equality Project, Teach for America, and the Harlem Village Academies. He is also a member of the board of directors of PopTech.