Every year we honor the work, life, and legacy of exceptional Black professionals across Ohio. Our awards have gained national recognition and serve as a beacon of hope to inspire the next generation of Black professionals.

Black Professional of the Year

This prestigious annual award dates back to the founding of BPACF and has the ultimate achievement for Black professionals in the Northeast Ohio.

Our honorees come from all sectors of the economy – from the largest corporations to entrepreneurship – across 15+ industries and have had decades of measurable impact on the communities in which they serve. This is why our Black Professionals of the Year are truly some of the most outstanding leaders in the country.

Lifetime Achievers

Recognizes outstanding leaders who have made historically significant contributions to the Greater Cleveland area. Must have served in a leadership capacity for 25 years or more. These individuals are community champions who have paved the way for younger professionals to rise.

Emerging Legends

Forty Under 40 Emerging Legends Award (formerly Trailblazers Award), dedicated to recognizing outstanding African American changemakers between the ages of 25-39 in Northeast Ohio. These dynamic changemakers are shifting culture and making notable impacts in Northeast Ohio.