Television Critics Association Honors ‘Star Trek’ With Heritage Award

The original Star Trek just had its 54th anniversary—and the groundbreaking series that launched a franchise spanning decades is still collecting accolades.

TCA honors Star Trek

The Television Critics Association has announced the winners of the organization’s 36th Annual TCA Awards. In addition to honoring the best programs and performances of the latest television season, each year the TCA hands out a Heritage Award for a landmark television series. This year that series is Gene Roddenberry’s original Star Trek.

Today the TCA rolled out announcements for their awards on social media, including this message on Twitter about their 2020 Heritage Award:

Our Heritage Award winner honestly needs no introduction, but let’s try anyway. It’s perhaps the most significant sci-fi series in American TV history, and it spawned a massive, sprawling franchise that continues to this day. But everything goes back to the original

You can see the post for Star Trek from their Instagram feed below.

Past winners of the TCA Heritage Award include The Simpsons, 60 Minutes, The West Wing, The Sopranos, M*A*S*H, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. TCA winners were determined by votes cast by the TCA’s broad network of more than 250 professional TV critics and journalists in the United States and Canada.

TCA had more to say about Star Trek in the official awards announcement:

TCA was proud to bestow the Heritage Award upon Gene Roddenberry’s landmark 1966 sci-fi epic Star Trek, in recognition of the groundbreaking series which brought the future to life—illustrating a unique vision that is equal parts hopeful and cautious as it explored issues such as bigotry, religion, politics, sexism, and human rights through timeless stories of love, war, intrigue, and adventure in outer space—with the help of a strong cast that was among the first to feature an African-American in a significant leading role.

Due to COVID, there was no official TCA Awards ceremony this year, but Gene Roddenberry’s son Rod Roddenberry accepted the award via remote video, which you can see on the official Star Trek site.

Keep up with all Star Trek history at

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Wow congrats to TOS! A really great honor for a really great show!

Congratulations are in order. Cheers! (virtual toast)!

Congratulations to the one and only, Star Trek: TOS! Live Long and Prosper!

TOS is my fave ^_^ thank you to the creators for everything you’ve given us in service of a brighter future!

TOS is in good company with this award. Totally deserved. Totally earned.

But it’s great that the recognition, acknowledgement and respect are finally coming. Perhaps it had to wait until the association is full of people who saw and loved the show.

It’s interesting. This award used to have nominees until the 2016-2017 season when they started only announcing a winner. When this award had nominees, Star Trek was nominated 5 out of the last 5 years.

Good to know.

I’m surprised that Star Trek had to wait this long to be recognized, but better late than never and VERY much deserved!

Not for nothing, but 54 years! Best tv show of all time by many metrics! Love and rejoice!

These awards don’t really mean anything (awards in general are kind of pointless), but congrats just the same.

You must be a gas at parties.

Congratulations to probably my favorite TV show of all time. LLAP, Star Trek!


Marriages don’t really mean anything, but congratulations on the change in your tax filing status.

And you wonder why I’ve never been asked to be Best Man at a wedding.

Congratulations to Star Trek baby! Better late than never and pretty well deserved.

Thoroughly deserved and many congratulations.

Shouldn’t the award say NBC, the network which originally aired Star Trek?

I mulled that over for a while and I landed on this: CBS was listed as the PRODUCING network, as Desilu and Paramount Television are now both either defunct or rebranded as CBS Television. It looks wrong, I’ll agree.

Current ownership, in all likelihood. I doubt there’s anyone over at NBC who’s still alive when Trek aired there.


Most of the live ones that were still attached on this side of the millennium likely got rightly purged in their systemic misogyny investigation.

Yeah, this really irks me for some reason. I mean, let’s not forget that Gene was contractually obligated to pitch Star Trek to CBS first, and they passed! Imagine being offered Star Trek and saying “no thank you, we’d rather make Lost in Space”!?


While I did enjoy Irwin Allen’s sf products’ noble launches, it does rather jar one that it just might be that, somehow, the profits CBS ultimately pocketed from sliding each into adolescent goofery, allowed them to prevail in ownership of STAR TREK.

Well done STAR TREK! I knew it was only a matter of time (Dept of Temporal Investigations may be calling on me now) you would win. Finally an award that is deserved for a show. While this is specific to TOS, I like to think that this is for all the series; TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT, DISCO, SHORT TREKS, LOWER DECKS and series yet to come. Congratulations to all those who made STAR TREK what it is.

Congrats to Star Trek as the latest recipient of the TCA Heritage Awards and Rod Roddenberry accepting on behalf of the franchise and his father, Gene.

Congratulations to the founding first STAR TREK, and thank you, Rod, for so ably and nobly serving as its avatar.