The Big star was the guest of honour at the event hosted by the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity at the New York Public Library in Manhattan.
Hanks was feted for his philanthropy and charitable endeavours, but the Oscar winner remained humble as he spoke to reporters on the red carpet, saying, "If I wasn't an actor who had done pretty good in some movies, I would be here serving the canapes for somebody else getting it tonight. (I feel) very lucky, very blessed."
The actor's wife Rita Wilson accompanied her partner and she was full of praise for his charity work: "I've always been proud of the work that Tom does. He's very discreet, he doesn't make a big deal about it and he's very consistent... I'm in awe of how he handles it."