*The late Nickolas Ashford is being honored this Friday by the Chicago based HistoryMakers with a  star-studded “Evening with Valerie Simpson.”

The event, which will begin with seating at 6 p.m. in Thorne Hall Auditorium at the Northwestern University School of Law, will be  taped for broadcast on PBS.  Simpson, Ashford’s widow and creative partner, will be interviewed by Gwen Ifill, an award-winning moderator, managing editor of “Washington Week” and senior correspondent for the PBS network’s NewsHour. This will be the first major public appearance by Simpson since the untimely passing of her husband in August

Both Ashford and his wife worked together for decades bringing their energy and talents to the evolution of R&B and were eventually inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

The event will take place at the Thorne Hall Auditorium at the Northwestern University School of Law and will begin at 6 p.m.

Each year, The HistoryMakers has hosted its annual fundraiser An Evening With… to captivated audiences.  An Evening With… is a conversational interview similar to Inside the Actors Studio that lasts approximately 1.5 hours and is aired nationally on PBS. Some of The HistoryMakers’ previous An Evening With… programs include:

• An Evening With Harry Belafonte interviewed by actor Danny Glover (2000)
• An Evening With Dionne Warwick interviewed by entertainer Diahann Carroll (2001)
• An Evening With Ossie Davis & Ruby Dee interviewed by activist Angela Davis (2002)
• An Evening With B.B. King interviewed by singer and producer Isaac Hayes (2003)
• An Evening With Russell Simmons interviewed by Radio One’s Cathy Hughes (2004)
• An Evening With Denyce Graves interviewed by actress Angela Bassett (2005)
• An Evening With Colin Powell interviewed by political commentator Juan Williams (2006)
• An Evening With Earl Graves interviewed by civil rights activist Julian Bond (2006)
• An Evening With Quincy Jones interviewed by Gwen Ifill (2007)
• An Evening With Eartha Kitt interviewed by Gwen Ifill (2008)
• An Evening With Richard Parsons interviewed by Soledad O’Brien (2008)
• An Evening With Smokey Robinson interviewed by Gwen Ifill (2009)
• And An Evening With The HistoryMakers 10th Anniversary Celebration (2010)