Alan Alda is your top choice to receive the Bob Hope humanitarian award at the 2017 Emmys. That’s according to hundreds of people who voted in our recent poll asking which television legend should be selected for the honor if given this year.
It’s been seven years since the television academy last handed out this award for charitable works. George Clooney was the recipient as it was presented by Julianna Margulies. This special honor given at the Emmy Awards has only been bestowed four times to Oprah Winfrey (2002), Bill Cosby (2003), family of Danny Thomas (2004), and Clooney (2010).
We offered eight possibilities in our poll, and Alda took home the most votes with 33%. He was followed by Angela Lansbury with 22% and Betty White with 17%. Let’s take a look at the humanitarian lives for each of these eight people.
Alan Alda is a six-time Emmy winner (five for acting, writing and directing on “M*A*S*H,” one for “The West Wing”) among his 34 career nominations. He was inducted into the TV Hall of Fame in 1994. He was one of the best known men advocating for women’s rights starting in the 1970s and has also supported scientific and medical causes.
Candice Bergen is a five-time Emmy winner (all for “Murphy Brown”) among nine career nominations. She was inducted into the TV Hall of Fame in 2010. She has been a political activist since her college days in the 1960s and continued philanthropy work throughout her life.
Ted Danson is a two-time Emmy winner (both for “Cheers”) among his 15 career nominations. While he has been involved in many charities, he is best known for his extensive work for environmental concerns, especially the world’s oceans.
Ellen DeGeneres is a one-time Emmy winner (writing on “Ellen”) and 14-time nominee in primetime. She has also won 29 times at the daytime ceremony. She has been a special envoy for Global AIDS Awareness and supported causes for at-risk populations.
Michael J. Fox is a five-time Emmy winner (three for “Family Ties,” one for “Spin City,” one for “Rescue Me”) among 18 career nominations. His Michael J. Fox Foundation was created to help fund promising research to curing Parkinson’s disease, with which he was diagnosed himself in 1991.
Angela Lansbury is an 18-time Emmy nominee (12 alone for “Murder, She Wrote”) who has somehow never prevailed with an actual trophy before. She was inducted into the TV Hall of Fame in 1996. She has supported many charities, especially those involving domestic abuse and HIV/AIDS.
Martin Sheen won an Emmy Award (for “Murphy Brown”) among 10 career nominations, mostly for playing the U.S. President on “The West Wing.” Long before that role, he was a political activist for such causes as war and military action, hazardous waste, capital punishment, civil rights, and the farm worker movement.
Betty White has won five primetime Emmys (two for “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” one for “The Golden Girls,” one for “The John Larroquette Show,” one for “Saturday Night Live”) among 21 career nominations. She was inducted into the TV Hall of Fame in 1995. Throughout her life, she has been an animal rights activist and on behalf of their health and humane causes.
Be sure to make your Emmy predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our Emmy odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on September 17. And join in the fierce debate over the 2017 Emmys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.