Hattie McDaniel won Best Supporting Actress in 1940 for her role in Gone with the Wind. She was the first African American to win an Academy Award.
Halle Berry won for her performance in the 2001 film Monster's Ball.
Sidney Poitier won for his role in Lilies of the Field.
Known as the Queen of Jazz, Ella Fitzgerald was the first African American female to win a Grammy in both categories for Best Vocal Performance and Best Jazz Performance at the first Annual Grammy Awards in 1958.
Donald Glover won an Emmy for Outstanding Directing on a Comedy Series with his FX show Atlanta, making history as the first African American male to win the award.
Lena Waithe made history as the first African American female to win an Emmy for her writing on the Netflix series Master of None.
Gabby Douglas was the first African American to win the individual all-around event at the Summer Olympics.
On September 17, 1983 Vanessa Williams was the first African American to win the Miss America pageant.
Tyra Banks became the first African American Victoria's Secret model to don the iconic Angel wings in 1997. She was also the first black model to wear the Fantasy Bra, which reportedly cost $3 million dollars.
Beverly Johnson is known as the first black supermodel after gracing the cover of Glamour in 1971.
In 2015, Lester Holt became the face of NBC Nightly News, making history as the first black male to become the lead anchor on a nightly weekday news show.
Oprah Winfrey joined Forbe's highly acclaimed list of American billionaires in 2003, making her the first black woman to ever join the ranks of the world's richest.
In March 1965, Jennifer Jackson was the first African American Playboy Playmate centerfold.
In 1966, Donyale Luna was the first African American to cover Vogue.
In 1968, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, Fats Domino, and Little Richard were the first African Americans to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In 1974, Stevie Wonder was the first African American to the Grammy Album of the Year. The singer won for his album Innervisions.
Viola Davis was the first African-American female to win Outstanding Actress in a Drama series at the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards in 2015 for her role on How to Get Away With Murder.
In 2002, Whoopi Goldberg was the first African American to win an Academy Award (1990), Emmy(2002 & 2009), Grammy(1985), and Tony (2002).
In 1950, Juanita Hall is the first African American to win a Tony Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Bloody Mary in South Pacific.
On June 30, 2015, Misty Copeland became the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in American Ballet Theatre history.