Aside from being a legendary actor, Denzel Washington is known for the ways in which his philanthropic efforts have helped people — everyday students and future celebrities alike — to achieve their dreams. But prioritizing giving back is not something the Academy Award winner does alone. Washington and his family, through the Denzel Washington Family Foundation, recently donated $100,000, their fourth installment in plans to give $1 million, to Marshall, Texas’ HBCU Wiley College.
The school is the college whose debate team was the subject of the actor’s 2007 film The Great Debaters.
1. Katia, 1990
Washington, wife Pauletta and their four children are excited to be able to help open doors for the debate team at the HBCU, as he told ESSENCE in a statement. “We are honored to continue supporting the best and the brightest in the land and look forward to ‘The Great Debaters’ continuing to do what they do best: win.” Thinking about the generosity of the Washingtons, we couldn’t help but want to learn more about the family. And while they haven’t shied away from paparazzi, they’re certainly a low-key brood. With the exception of eldest child John David Washington, who has become quite the leading man in Hollywood over the last few years, you don’t often see the three other Washington kids out and about.
2. Olivia, 2009
But they’ve attended plenty of events with their famous father over the years. If you know little about the Washington kids, check out photos of all four of them with their famous parents from over the years. Denzel Washington’s groundbreaking roles have led to Academy Award, Tony, and Golden Globe wins. Now the acclaimed actor and his family are winning praise from a Texas HBCU for a generous gift.
3. John David, 2018
Washington, who’s married to actress/singer Pauletta Washington and has four adult offspring, recently announced the Denzel Washington Family Foundation has made the fourth $100,000 installment toward a $1 million commitment to Wiley College. Founded in 1873, the historically Black college in Marshall, Texas is home of `The Great Debaters’—a team popularized in a 2007 film of the same name. Washington directed the movie and starred as Professor Melvin B. Tolson, a pioneering debate coach who organized the team in the 1920s and led students to a decade-long winning streak in the 1930s. He facilitated interracial collegiate debates during the segregated Jim Crow era that drew large crowds.
4. John David, 2004
5. Malcolm & Katia, 2019
6. Malcolm, 2009
7. Olivia, 2010
8. Olivia, 2006
9. Katia, 2004
10. John David, 2008
11. John David, 2010
12. Malcolm, 2008
13. Olivia, 2013
14. Olivia, 2009
15. John David and Malcolm, 1999
This is how people reacted to this post:
Bertha Grady – God gave him a special gift and he is paying it forward. Truly admire both he and his wife Beautiful family and gracious human being. Denzel you are the Dad of living life abundantly as God’s measure of love!
Letitia Peters – What a beautiful family inside & out!!! They are so thoughtful!!! God bless them!!!
Lillie Perry – What a wonderful selfless act of kindness, more celebrities should do the same. After all you can’t take it with you so spread it around
This Article Was First Published on essence.com