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Kennedy Center Rescinds Bill Cosby’s Honors, Mark Twain Prize

“His actions have overshadowed the very career accomplishments these distinctions from the Kennedy Center intend to recognize”

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A pair of honors that Bill Cosby received from the Kennedy Center, including the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, were rescinded Monday.

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A pair of honors that Bill Cosby received from the Kennedy Center, including the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, were rescinded Monday, two weeks after the comedian was found guilty of indecent aggravated assault.

Cosby received the Kennedy Center Honors in 1998 and the prestigious Mark Twain Prize a decade later in 2009. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts announced both awards had been rescinded following a vote of the Board of Trustees, the Washington Post reports.

“The Honors and Mark Twain Prize are given to artists who, through their lifetime of work, have left an indelible impact on American culture,” the Kennedy Center said in a statement. “As a result of Mr. Cosby’s recent criminal conviction, the Board concluded that his actions have overshadowed the very career accomplishments these distinctions from the Kennedy Center intend to recognize.”

The Kennedy Center’s decision come less than a week at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science voted to expel both Cosby and director Roman Polanski. “The Board continues to encourage ethical standards that require members to uphold the Academy’s values of respect for human dignity,” the Academy said at the time.

Cosby is currently under house arrest while he awaits sentencing after being found guilty of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, one of over 50 women who have come forward to accuse the comedian of sexual misconduct. Cosby faces over 30 years in prison following his conviction.

In the weeks after the conviction, Cosby’s alma mater Temple University withdrew their honorary degree they gave Cosby. However, a handful of colleges have still not rescinded the honorary degrees the comedian received.

In This Article: Bill Cosby, Kennedy Center Honors

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