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Harvard’s ‘Skip’ Gates picks up Peabody

Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Harvard professor Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr. picked up a Peabody Award the other night for his six-hour PBS documentary “The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross.” The prestigious awards honoring excellence in television and radio programming were handed out in New York City, where, it turns out, Gates (above) has a luxury apartment thanks to New York University president John Sexton. The New York Post reported that Gates has been given a deep discount on the fancy faculty pad in Chelsea — and he doesn’t even have to teach in exchange. In fact, Gates has never taught at NYU. He told the paper he has an informal “consultancy” with Sexton, who’s apparently been trying for years to lure the celebrated professor away from Harvard. “It isn’t exactly a secret that President Sexton would very much like to recruit me to the NYU faculty,” Gates told the Post. . . . Other locals who were honored with Peabody Awards on Monday night were New Hampshire’s Ken Burns for “The Central Park Five”; CBS Boston’s WBZ-TV News and WBZ NewsRadio 1030 staffers for their coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings; and Chestnut Hill resident Barbara Brilliant for “Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy.”