Levar Burton was named Geek of the Year at the 2nd Annual Geekie Awards following the success of his Kickstarter for "Reading Rainbow" which raised over $5.4 million from 105,857 donors in 35 days.
Thanks to the campaign funds, "Reading Rainbow" apps are in development on the web, smartphones, game consoles, tablets and other streaming devices. Additionally, over 7,500 disadvantaged classrooms will receive subscriptions to "Reading Rainbow"'s online services for free.
"It has been a long-held dream of mine to be named Geek of the Year in any universe," said Burton during his acceptance speech. "I'll take the one I live in any day."
"Reading Rainbow" aired from June 6, 1993, to Nov. 10, 2006, making it the third-longest running children's series in PBS history after "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" and "Sesame Street." The show won over 200 broadcast awards including a Peabody award and 26 Emmys, but was cancelled due to a set of budget cuts by PBS. The return of "Reading Rainbow" will primarily be an online experience, allowing the kind of flexibility not possible on rigid TV budgets and scheduling.
Burton has served as an executive producer and host of "Reading Rainbow" since its inception. He is also well-known for his role as Kunta Kinte in the groundbreaking miniseries "Roots" and as Gerodi LaForge, the blind starship engineer in "Star Trek: The New Generation."
The official video of Burton's acceptance speech can be seen below.