The National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), has announced the nominees for the 2016 NAMIC Vision Awards presented in partnership with NAMIC – Southern California.

Now in its 22nd year, the awards honor original and digital programming content that depicts the lives, spirit and contributions of people of color and best reflects the ethnic and cultural diversity of the viewing audience.

Leading all contenders vying for this year’s NAMIC Vision Awards is HBO with nine nominations. BET Networks and OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network garnered eight nominations each with ESPN earning seven nods. Overall, 29 networks/distributors generated 83 nominations for NAMIC Vision Awards presented in 18 categories: Animation, Awards & Honors, Children’s, Comedy, Daytime, Documentary, Drama, Foreign Language, Lifestyle, News/Informational, Original Movie or Special, Reality, Reality – Social Issues, Sports, Variety/Talk Show, Best Performance – Comedy, Best Performance – Drama and Digital Media – Short Form. Original programs having aired from November 1, 2014 to November 30, 2015 were eligible for consideration.

“At a time when diversity is at the forefront of our consciousness such as the case with the Oscars, NAMIC remains committed to recognizing achievements in ethnically and culturally relevant programming,” said Eglon E. Simons, president and CEO, NAMIC. “We applaud this year’s nominees and encourage them to continue advancing diversity on screen and behind-the-scenes.”

HBO’s “Bessie” and Lifetime’s “Devious Maids” tied for this year’s top nominated programs, both earning three nominations. Queen Latifah and Michael Kenneth Williams received Best Performance – Drama nods for “Bessie.” Danía Ramirez and Judy Reyes garnered Best Performance – Comedy nominations for “Devious Maids.” “Bessie” received its third nomination in the Original Movie or Special category. “Devious Maids” was also recognized for Comedy.

Additional nominations for Best Performance – Drama went to Naturi Naughton and Omari Hardwick for the Starz original series “Power,” and David Oyelowo for “Nightingale”. In addition to “Bessie,” programs nominated for Original Movie or Special category include: Nickelodeon’s “Halo Awards,” BET Networks “The Book of Negroes,” National Geographic Channel’s “Saints & Strangers” and Lifetime’s “With This Ring.” The nominees joining Ramirez and Reyes in the Best Performance – Comedy category are: Frankie J. Alvarez and Raúl Castillo for HBO’s “Looking” and Mindy Kaling for Universal Television’s “The Mindy Project.” Original series nominated for Comedy in addition to Lifetime’s “Devious Maids” include ABC’s “black-ish,” BET Networks “Real Husbands of Hollywood,” and Universal Television’s “Master of None” and “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.”

ABC dominated the Drama category with nominations for its primetime series, “How To Get Away with Murder,” “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy.” Original series BET Network’s “Being Mary Jane” and Cinemax’s “The Knick” also garnered nominations.

The NAMIC Vision Awards competition extends eligibility to national broadcast and cable networks; local affiliates; local origination programs from cable operators; and VOD content produced for digital platforms. Entries were judged by a distinguished panel of entertainment industry executives. Judging is focused on overall imagery (creative merit, originality, and presentation quality), sensitivity (the consideration given to cultural nuances), writing (the depiction of issues relevant to people of color) and the quality of acting in the performance categories.

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