Jennifer Garner has been named Woman of the Year by Harvard University’s Hasty Pudding Theatricals, based not just on her career as an actor but also because of her record as a philanthropist and entrepreneur, the organisation said.
Garner, 49, will be the guest of honour at a parade through Harvard Square, followed by a roast at which she will receive her pudding pot, the theatre troupe said in a statement.
Hasty Pudding Theatricals, which dates to 1844 and bills itself the third oldest theatre group in the world, established its Woman of the Year award in 1951 to honour people who have made “lasting and impressive contributions to the world of entertainment”.
Last year’s recipient was Viola Davis, and previous winners include Meryl Streep, Katharine Hepburn, Ethel Merman and Cher.
The date of the parade, February 5, is also opening night for the group’s latest performance.
“We are thrilled to honour Jennifer Garner, who will be the first Woman of the Year to be honoured on opening night,” co-producer Molly Chiang said.
“13 Going On 30 was my go-to movie growing up, so I can’t wait to meet her.”
Garner was nominated for several Primetime Emmys for her role as Sydney Bristow in the television spy series Alias.
She has been lauded for her work in several films including Juno, Dallas Buyers Club and 13 Going On 30.
Garner is a Save the Children trustee and has advocated on Capitol Hill and around the nation to raise awareness and funds for the organisation.
She also co-founded the organic food company Once Upon a Farm in 2017, with a goal of providing children with the highest quality food grown using sustainable methods.
Jason Bateman, who played Garner’s husband in the 2007 film Juno, was named 2022 Man of the Year last month.