SPORT AND THE ARTS
At a mere 18 years old, gymnast Simone Biles is a historymaker as the first African American world all-around champion and the first woman to win three consecutive world all-around titles. Biles currently stands as the most decorated female gymnast and holds the record for the most gold medals won by a female gymnast In World Championship history.
Misty Copeland makes headlines and history as the first African American female principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre. Prior to her current role as principal dancer, Copeland was only the second African American female soloist with the American Ballet Theatre.
American mountain climber Sophia Danenberg made history in 2006, at age 34, when she became the first African American and the first black woman to reach the peak of Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world. Prior to this feat, Danenberg managed indoor air quality projects with United Technologies before working in green technology research programs.
Tennis powerhouse Serena Williams makes history as the only tennis player--man or woman--to have won singles titles at least six times in three of the four Grand Slam tournaments. She is the only tennis player to have won 10 Grand Slam singles titles in two separate decades. She holds 21 career Grand Slams to date.
BUSINESS AND CAREERS
Ursala Burns became a historymaker in 2009 as the first black woman to become CEO of a Fortune 500 company with Xerox Corp. Burns entered Xerox in 1980 as an intern, earning a permanent position a year later and eventually being named president in 2007. Burns is also chairman of Xerox and the President's Export Council, the U.S. advisory committee on international trade.
Four-star Adm. Michelle Howard currently serves as the 38th Vice Chief of Naval Operations--the first woman and the first African American to hold that position. She is the highest-ranking African American woman ever in any branch of the military. Howard is also the first African American woman to command a U.S. Navy ship, the USS Rushmore.
Professor and historian Annette Gordon-Reed was the first African American to win a Pulitzer Prize for history in 2009 for her book The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family. She is currently a professor of law, legal history, and history at Harvard Law School and Harvard University and a professor at the...