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August 22, 2014

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Shakira named Latin Grammy Person of the Year

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Steve Marcus

Honoree Shakira arrives at the 2011 Latin Recording Academy’s Person of the Year tribute dinner and concert at the Mandalay Bay Wednesday, November 9, 2011.

Arrivals for Latin Person of the Year: Shakira

Honoree Shakira, center, poses with Luis Cobos, left, Chairman of the Latin Recording Academy, and  Neil Portnow, National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) President/CEO, at the 2011 Latin Recording Academy's Person of the Year tribute dinner and concert at the Mandalay Bay Wednesday, November 9, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Shakira: 2011 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year

Shakira is honored as the 2011 Latin Recording Academy's Person of the Year at Mandalay Bay on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Shakira at Mandalay Bay Events Center

Shakira performs at Mandalay Bay Events Center on Oct. 16, 2010. Launch slideshow »

LAS VEGAS — Her hips don't lie and neither do her massive album sales.

International pop star Shakira was honored as the 2011 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year in Las Vegas Wednesday night.

The 34-year-old Colombian singer was recognized at a tribute dinner attended by some of Latin music's biggest stars, including Venezuelan crooner Franco De Vita, Mexican rocker Alejandra Guzmán and salsa legend Gilberto Santa Rosa.

Shakira has sold more than 60 million albums in Spanish and English and is the youngest person to receive the Latin Recording Academy's most prestigious award. Previous honorees include Carlos Santana, Gloria Estefan and Ricky Martin.

Shakira walked the red carpet outside the event in a sea foam Grecian gown, her long blonde hair gathered to the side in a unassuming braid.

"This is one of the most important moments of my life," she told The Associated Press. "I'm happy. I'm honored. I'm humbled."

The celebrity gala comes amid a red-letter week for Shakira, who was honored with her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles Tuesday. The "Hips Don't Lie" singer is also up for three awards, including album of the year, at the 12th Annual Latin Grammy Awards Thursday night in Las Vegas.

Shakira, who recently wrapped up her international tour for her "Sale el Sol" album, said it has been a "year of passion."

"I've been able to harvest the efforts of the past," she said.

The stars who walked the red carpet before the tribute dinner applauded Shakira for making the leap from Latin American super star to mainstream fame.

Guzmán said she was envious of Shakira's prominence, but said the acclaim was well-deserved, noting Skakira's lyrical and vocal talents.

"All of us have dreams to be that big," Guzman said.

Latin Grammy nominee De Vita echoed the praise, and said he hoped he could follow in Shakira's footsteps.

"She has had an extraordinary and enviable career," he said.

Shakira, whose full name is Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, was only 14 when she released her first album, "Magia." She rose to fame in Latin America and Spain in 1995 with the release "Pies Descalzos" and the 1998 release of her Spanish rock album "Donde Estan los Ladrones?"

She made her name in the English-language world with the hit single "Whenever, Whereever" in 2001, selling more than 13 million copies worldwide of the album "Laundry Service."

Shakira is also known as a philanthropist throughout Latin America. She has raised millions of dollars to fight poverty and provide education for the poor through her Pies Descalzos Foundation.

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