Pride has long stood as a legend in country music earning accolades for himself throughout his career which include being a Grand Ole Opry member and a Country music Hall of Fame member. The 86-year-old country legend has also produced chart-topping songs and timeless hits over the years. Charley Pride also belongs to the few numbers of Black Country artists that have risen in prominence in country music.
CMA CEO Sarah Trahern said that Charley Pride was an example of a trailblazer. Pride is one of the few artists that have help build the rich heritage of country music to what it is today. The unique voice he possessed has produced hits that would last for years to come.
Pride now joins other country legends of the past that includes Willie Nelson, whom the award was named after, Kenny Rogers (2013), Johnny Cash (2015), Dolly Parton (2016), and Kris Kristofferson (2019).