Outdoor Shakespearean Theatre
Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum

The Will Geer Humanitarian Award

Debbie Allen with the 2023 Will Geer Humanitarian Award

Debbie Allen, 2023 Honoree

Debbie Allen’s contribution to theatre, dance, film, and television cannot be overstated, and neither can the impact of her activism. Throughout her prolific and award-winning career spanning six decades, Ms. Allen has remained committed to the transformational power of art. For her tireless advocacy for social justice, community empowerment, and the development of young artists, Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum honors Debbie Allen with the 2023 Will Geer Humanitarian Award to be presented at the 50th Anniversary Gala on Saturday, August 5, 2023.

Will Geer Humanitarian Award

The Will Geer Humanitarian Award is presented annually to an individual who epitomizes and advances human welfare and social justice championed by Will in his lifetime. Inaugurated in 2015, the award is curated by Will’s family to recognize individuals who share Will’s spirit in the mission to make the world a better place.

previous recipients

2019 — Greta Thunberg

Greta Tintin Eleonora Ernman Thunberg is a Swedish environmental activist who
is known for challenging world leaders to take immediate action for climate
change mitigation.

2018 — Maxine Waters

A woman of the people, by the people, and always, always for the people. A remarkable soldier for justice and equality.

2017 — Paul Robeson

Singer, Actor, Athlete, Scholar and Social Activist

2016 — Haskell Wexler

Whose unwavering eye illuminated the world.

2015 — Earl Hamner

For his dedication to truthful storytelling and his excellence creating characters that touch the human spirit.