By  on June 22, 2007

The accolades are piling up for financier Stephen A. Schwarzman.

A week after announcing an initial public offering of The Blackstone Group that could value Schwarzman's stake at more than $7.7 billion, the company's co-founder, chairman and chief executive officer on Monday received his third award in as many months at The New York Public Library's corporate dinner.

The annual fete, which raised a record $2.2 million for the Research Libraries of the NYPL, was attended by 400 guests, including James B. Lee Jr. of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.; Peter Allan Atkins of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP; Edgar M. Bronfman Jr. of Warner Music Group; and Richard S. Fuld Jr. of Lehman Brothers.

In April, Schwarzman received the Atlantic Council of the United States' Distinguished Business Leadership Award, and this month the Yale School of Management — he is a Yale alum — gave him its Legend in Leadership Award.

Lauded by co-workers for his philanthropic efforts even while media have poked fun at the self-made billionaire's lavish tastes, Schwarzman is the first library trustee to receive the annual award.

"He's one of the most powerful investors in the world," said Joshua Steiner, a managing principal at Quadrangle Group LLC. "He's now applying that same drive to making New York a better place for people of all economic means."

Nonetheless, the decision to honor a trustee for the first time sparked discussion. "There was big debate," said Samuel Butler, former library chairman. "We thought about it. He's so active that he deserved it."

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