A leader in the civil rights movement in the mid-twentieth century, Martin Luther King Jr. is best remembered for advancing civil rights through nonviolence and civil disobedience. A man of Christian faith who was inspired by Indian freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent activism, he was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize for fighting racial inequality.
Montero Lamar Hill, better known as Lil Nas X, soared to fame with his US Billboard Hot 100 charter country rap track Old Town Road. The gay singer initially became viral for his comedy videos on Facebook and Vine and then soared to fame on Spotify.
Ray Charles went on to become a great singer-songwriter, composer, and pianist, despite suffering blindness due to glaucoma early in his life. One of the most respected and decorated musicians of all time, Ray Charles has been named in lists, such as 100 Greatest Singers of All Time. He pioneered the soul music genre, which remains his greatest contribution.
Khalid is an American singer-songwriter whose work in Logic’s hit single 1-800-273-8255 earned him a nomination at the Grammy Awards. He has also received prestigious awards, such as Billboard Music Awards, MTV Video Music Award, and American Music Awards. In 2019, he was named in Time magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People.
Chris Tucker is an American stand-up comedian and actor best known for playing Detective James Carter in the Rush Hour film series alongside Jackie Chan. Also a humanitarian, Tucker joined the likes of Bill Clinton, Jeffrey Epstein, Kevin Spacey, and Ghislaine Maxwell on a trip to Africa in an attempt to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS.
Known for his portrayal of domineering and aggressive characters in his films, Laurence Fishburne began his stint on screen as a child actor in projects such as Apocalypse Now. The play Two Trains Running won him multiple theater awards. However, fans remember him best as Morpheus from The Matrix.
Spike Lee is a celebrated and one of the most decorated American filmmakers of his generation. Most of his critically acclaimed films explore political issues, such as urban crime and poverty, colorism in the African-American community, and race relations. Four of his films have been selected for conservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress.
Emmy Award-winner improv comedian Wayne Brady of Whose Line Is It Anyway? has also mesmerized audiences with his acting skills in the Broadway musical Kinky Boots. If that wasn’t enough, the multitalented performer was also nominated for a Grammy for his rendition of Sam Cooke’s A Change Is Gonna Come.
Sugar Ray Robinson was an American boxer. Considered one of the greatest boxers ever, Robinson held a 91-fight unbeaten streak from 1943 to 1951, the third-longest in the history of professional boxing. Also known for his flamboyant and classy lifestyle outside the ring, Sugar Ray Robinson unsuccessfully tried his hand at a career as an entertainer after retiring from boxing.
Kirshnik Ball, better known by his stage name Takeoff, is an American singer-songwriter and rapper. He is known for forming the hip hop trio Migos along with Offset and Quavo. Over the years, Kirshnik Ball has achieved success as part of the Migos. He stirred controversy in 2017 when he refused to use an overhead storage bin in an airplane.
Rapper T.I., also known as TIP, is one of the pioneers of trap music. The three-time Grammy-winner owns a music label and has seven “Top 5” Billboard 200 albums. He has starred in his own reality series, has written two novels, and has appeared in films such as Ant-Man.
Normani Hamilton is an American dancer and singer. Hamilton, who was part of the popular girl group Fifth Harmony, has won several awards, such as BMI Awards and iHeartRadio Music Awards. Also a philanthropist, Hamilton has been involved with charities like the Ryan Seacrest Foundation. Since 2017, she has been serving as a global ambassador for the American Cancer Society.
Larry Holmes is an American retired boxer whose left jab is often ranked among the best in the history of professional boxing. Widely regarded as one of the greatest heavyweights in the history of boxing, Holmes' title defense against 19 boxers is the second-most in history. He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2008.
Newscaster and TV host, Harris Faulkner, is currently associated with Fox News Channel. She hosts her own prime time political franchise called Town Hall America with Harris Faulkner and also a daily daytime show The Faulkner Focus. A much-respected figure in the TV industry, she is the recipient of six Emmy Awards and the Amelia Earhart Pioneering Lifetime Achievement Award.
Best known for his portrayal of Malcolm in the movie Dope, Shameik Moore later began his career with Incredible Crew and later gained fame for voicing Miles Morales in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. A skilled rapper, too, he scored 100,000 downloads with his debut mixtape, I Am Da Beat.
Civil rights activist and educator Betty Shabazz, or Betty X, was the wife of Black nationalist leader Malcolm X. Raised by her adoptive parents in Detroit, she met Malcolm X at a Nation of Islam event in Harlem. She died when her apartment was set on fire set by her grandson.
Best known for his role in the NBC sitcom Sanford and Son, Demond Wilson had begun his career with dance and theater. A Catholic altar boy in his childhood, he later also became a minister, formed the Restoration House of America, and penned books on the New Age Movement.
Coco Gauff is an American tennis player who became the youngest singles WTA Tour title-holder since 2004 when she won her first WTA title at the 2019 Upper Austria Ladies Linz at the age of 15. Coco Gauff, who has achieved a career-high ranking of 23 in singles, is the youngest player ranked by the WTA in the top 100.