Entertainer of the Year Awards

Aired on CBS: January 14, 1972

Entertainer of the Year ad

Hosted by Ed Sullivan, The Entertainer of the Year Awards were presented at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. The 90-minute special with stars like Carol Burnett, Flip Wilson, Tom Jones and Jack Benny, included a special presentation to Streisand as Female Singer of the Year from the American Guild of Variety Artists (AGVA). The award was presented to Barbra by Robert L. Jensen, who was the President of NARC (The National Association For Retarded Children) at the time, and Barbra's segment was taped in Las Vegas, where she was appearing live at the Hilton.

From National Association for Retarded Children's 1972 Annual Report:

It was January 14, 1972. In New York, it was 9 o'clock in the evening, in California it was 6, and most Americans—coast to coast—were watching the CBS-TV Special "Entertainer of the Year," hosted by Ed Sullivan and featuring such stars as Jack Benny, Bob Hope, Flip Wilson. It was a "big show," when the American Guild of Variety Artists (AGVA) presented its annual awards to the top show business personalities of the past year.

At the climax of the show, NARC President Robert L. Jensen, introduced by Sullivan, stepped forward to award Barbra Streisand her AGVA trophy, signifying for the second successive season her selection as Female Singer of the Year.

"It is a single fact," Jensen said to the TV viewers, "that the members of the American Guild of Variety Artists are among the most generous people when it comes to charitable causes. So it is a great honor for me to present this next award to a great star (Barbra Streisand) who has given so much of herself to the National Association for Retarded Children."

And indeed she has. As NARC's National Honorary Chairman, since 1970, she has appeared in a total of six color television appeals, taped radio spots, has posed for pictures with NARC's Poster Child each year for newspaper publicity, been photographed for full-page advertisements in behalf of NARC for national magazines, written letters of congratulations to civic groups who raise money for local NARC units and endorsements for their souvenir journals, donated autographed record albums for auction at NARC fund raising events and spoken of her interest in mental retardation during interviews.

Miss Streisand, in accepting the award from Mr. Jensen, told the millions of viewers watching that Ed Sullivan had advised her that she could plug anything she chose. "And," added Barbra, "I want to plug my latest picture. It appears on the poster for the National Association for Retarded Children..."

Below: The best quality photo I could find of Mr. Jensen and Streisand posing with her award in Nevada. Streisand is wearing her “choir boy” gown that she designed for live performances.

Jensen and Streisand

 

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