The Black American Glossary

January 2019

Kid 'N Play

Kid ‘N Play

Hip-Hop Recording Group
Nona Hendryx

Nona Hendryx

Singer, Producer, Songwriter, Musician, Author, & Actress
Sheryl Lee Ralph

Sheryl Lee Ralph

Actress, Singer, Author, & Activist

December 2018

George Clinton

George Clinton

Singer, Songwriter, Bandleader, & Producer
Nichelle Nichols

Nichelle Nichols

Producer, Actress, & Singer
Desmond Tutu

Desmond Tutu

Archbishop, Civil Rights Activist, & Educator

November 2018

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey

Philanthropist, Producer, Talk Show Host, & Actress
Yaphet Kotto

Yaphet Kotto

Actor
Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes

Actor, Director, Producer, Martial Artist, & Author

October 2018

Obba Babatunde

Obba Babatunde

Actor
Jack Johnson

Jack Johnson

Professional Boxing Athlete
Phylicia Rashad

Phylicia Rashad

Actress

September 2018

Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali

Professional Boxing Athlete
Joe Frazier

Joe Frazier

Professional Boxing Athlete
Delroy Lindo

Delroy Lindo

Actor

August 2018

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain

Professional Basketball Athlete & Actor
Kareem Abdul Jabbar

Kareem Abdul Jabbar

Professional Basketball Athlete & Actor
Bill Russell

Bill Russell

Professional Basketball Athlete

July 2018

David Dinkins

David Dinkins

Professor & Mayor
Coretta Scott King

Coretta Scott King

Writer, Women's Rights Activist, & Civil Rights Activist
Nancy Wilson

Nancy Wilson

Television Personality & Singer

June 2018

Henry Flipper

Henry Flipper

Military Leader
Evander Holyfield

Evander Holyfield

Professional Boxing Athlete
Fela Kuti

Fela Kuti

Songwriter, Pianist, Civil Rights Activist, & Drummer

May 2018

Bernie Casey

Bernie Casey

Actor, Poet, & Professional Football Athlete
Ron Glass

Ron Glass

Actor
Sade

Sade

Singer & Songwriter

April 2018

Michael Clarke Duncan

Michael Clarke Duncan

Actor
Grace Jones

Grace Jones

Model, Actress, & Singer
Naughty By Nature

Naughty By Nature

Hip-Hop Recording Group

March 2018

The Isley Brothers

The Isley Brothers

R&B & Soul Music Group
Paul Mooney

Paul Mooney

Comedian, Writer, Social Critic, & Actor
Tina Turner

Tina Turner

Actress & Singer

February 2018

Billy Dee Williams

Billy Dee Williams

Actor, Artist, & Singer
Chris Tucker

Chris Tucker

Comedian & Actor
Cicely Tyson

Cicely Tyson

Actress

January 2018

Antonio Fargas

Antonio Fargas

Actor
Arsenio Hall

Arsenio Hall

Actor, Comedian, & Talk Show Host
Bishop T.D. Jakes

Bishop T.D. Jakes

Pastor, Author & Filmmaker

Nov. - December 2017

Morgan Freeman

Morgan Freeman

Actor, Director, Narrator, & Producer
Florence Griffith Joyner

Florence Griffith Joyner

Track & Field Athlete
NWA

NWA

Hip-Hop Recording Group
Chris Rock

Chris Rock

Comedian, Director, Producer, & Actor

October 2017

Lavar Burton

Lavar Burton

Director, Actor, Producer, & Television Personality
Earth, Wind & Fire

Earth, Wind & Fire

Funk/Soul/R&B Music Group
Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Monk

Pianist & Songwriter

September 2017

John Coltrane

John Coltrane

Composer, Saxophonist, & Musician
MC Lyte

MC Lyte

Hip-Hop Recording Artist, Actor, DJ, & Model
Peter Tosh

Peter Tosh

Musician & Singer

August 2017

Babyface

Babyface

Singer, Guitarist, Producer, & Songwriter
Gwen Ifill

Gwen Ifill

Journalist & News Anchor
George Wallace

George Wallace

Comedian & Actor

July 2017

George Foreman

George Foreman

Professional Boxing Athlete & Minister
Earvin 'Magic' Johnson

Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson

Professional Basketball Athlete
Keenan Ivory Wayans

Keenan Ivory Wayans

Actor, Comedian, Producer, & Director

June 2017

Bernie Mac

Bernie Mac

Comedian & Actor
Miriam Makeba

Miriam Makeba

Singer & Civil Rights Activist
Diana Ross

Diana Ross

Singer & Actress

May 2017

Freddie Jackson

Freddie Jackson

Singer
Nipsey Russell

Nipsey Russell

Comedian & Actor
John Witherspoon

John Witherspoon

Comedian & Actor

April 2017

Whoopi Goldberg

Whoopi Goldberg

Comedian, Actress, & Talk Show Host
Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan

Professional Basketball Player & Businessman
Jackie Joyner Kersee

Jackie Joyner Kersee

Track & Field Athlete

March 2017

Chuck Berry

Chuck Berry

Guitarist, Singer, & Songwriter
Dick Gregory

Dick Gregory

Author, Civil Rights Activist, Comedian, & Entrepreneur
Eddie Murphy

Eddie Murphy

Actor, Director, & Comedian

February 2017

Count Basie

Count Basie

Pianist & Songwriter
Moms Mabley

Moms Mabley

Comedian
The Miracles

The Miracles

R&B Music Group

January 2017

Bob Beamon

Bob Beamon

Track & Field Athlete
Ralph Ellison

Ralph Ellison

Academic, Author, Educator, & Literary Critic
Gladys Knight & The Pips

Gladys Knight & The Pips

R&B & Soul Music Group
Barry White

Barry White

Music Producer & Singer

Nov. - December 2016

Guion Bluford

Guion Bluford

Astronaut, Pilot, & Scientist
Diahann Carroll

Diahann Carroll

Actress & Singer
Nat King Cole

Nat King Cole

Actor, Pianist, Singer, & Television Personality

October 2016

Rod Carew

Rod Carew

Coach & Professional Baseball Athlete
Sam Cooke

Sam Cooke

Singer, Songwriter, & Entrepreneur
Cynthia McKinney

Cynthia Mckinney

Civil Rights Activist & U.S. Representative

September 2016

Death

Death

Punk/Garage Band
Patrice O'Neal

Patrice O'Neal

Actor, Comedian, & Radio Personality
Richard Roundtree

Richard Roundtree

Actor

July 2016 - August 2016

Julian Bond

Julian Bond

Government Official, Educator, & Civil Rights Activist
Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington

Pianist, Conductor, & Songwriter
Issac Hayes

Issac Hayes

Actor, Musician, & Singer

May - June 2016

Wally Amos

Wally Amos

Entrepreneur
Ella Baker

Ella Baker

Civil Rights Activist
Run DMC

Run DMC

Hip-Hop Recording Group

March - April 2016

Dorothy Height

Dorothy Height

Civil Rights Activist & Women's Rights Activist
Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix

Guitarist, Songwriter, & Singer
Bob Marley

Bob Marley

Singer, Songwriter, Musician, & Guitarist

January - February 2016

Arthur Ashe

Arthur Ashe

Professional Tennis Player & Activist
Betty Shabazz

Betty Shabazz

Civil Rights Activist, Nurse & Educator
Bobby Womack

Bobby Womack

Singer, Songwriter, Musician, Producer, Instrumentalist, & Sideman

Nov. - December 2015

Aaliyah

Aaliyah

Actress & Singer
Julius Erving

Julius Erving

Professional Basketball Athlete

Sept. - October 2015

Grandmaster Caz

Grandmaster Caz

DJ, Singer, Songwriter, & MC
Ray Charles

Ray Charles

Pianist, Songwriter, Composer, Arranger, & Singer
Whitney Young, Jr.

Whitney Young, Jr.

Civil Rights Activist

August 2015

Gwendolyn Brooks

Gwendolyn Brooks

Poet & Teacher
Jim Brown

Jim Brown

Professional Football Athlete & Actor
Marvin Gaye

Marvin Gaye

Singer, Songwriter, Musician, Producer, & Composer

July 2015

Amiri Baraka

Amiri Baraka

Actor, Teacher, Director, Producer, Writer, Activist, & Poet
Ruby Dee

Ruby Dee

Actress, Screenwriter, Civil Rights Activist, Poet, & Playwright
Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson

Producer, Dancer, & Singer

June 2015

Jim Kelly

Jim Kelly

Martial Artist, Actor, & Athletic Instructor
Bayard Rustin

Bayard Rustin

Civil Rights Activist
Stevie Wonder

Stevie Wonder

Musician, Singer, Songwriter, Producer, & Multi-Instrumentalist

May 2015

Curtis Mayfield

Curtis Mayfield

Singer
Queen Latifah

Queen Latifah

Singer, Songwriter, Hip-Hop Recording Artist, Actress, Model, Comedian, & Talk Show Host
Rakim

Rakim

Hip-Hop Recording Artist
A. Phillip Randolph

A. Phillip Randolph

Civil Rights Activist

April 2015

Afrika Bambaataa

Afrika Bambaataa

DJ, Producer, & Activist
Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston

Singer & Actress
Barbara Jordan

Barbara Jordan

Civil Rights Activist & U.S. Representative

March 2015

Redd Foxx

Redd Foxx

Actor & Comedian
Berry Gordy

Berry Gordy

Record Executive, Songwriter, & Producer
Chaka Khan

Chaka Khan

Actress, Singer, & Songwriter
Gordon Parks

Gordon Parks

Writer, Photographer, Pianist, Songwriter, & Director

February 2015

Harry Belafonte

Harry Belafonte

Civil Rights Activist, Actor, & Singer
Shirley Chisholm

Shirley Chisholm

Politician, Educator, & Author
Carter G. Woodson

Carter G. Woodson

Historian

January 2015

Spike Lee

Spike Lee

Actor, Director, & Producer
Joe Louis

Joe Louis

Professional Boxing Athlete
Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela

President (non-U.S.), Writer, & Civil Rights Activist
Augusta Savage

Augusta Savage

Sculptor, Artist, Educator, & Civil Rights Activist

December 2014

Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald

Singer
The Notorious B.I.G.

The Notorious B.I.G.

Hip-Hop Recording Artist
Sidney Poitier

Sidney Poitier

Actor & Filmmaker
Bessie Smith

Bessie Smith

Singer

November 2014

Lena Horne

Lena Horne

Singer, Actress, Civil Rights Activist, & Dancer
Quincy Jones

Quincy Jones

Children's Activist, Trumpet Player, Producer, Songwriter, & Television Producer
Prince

Prince

Singer, Producer, & Songwriter
Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman

Civil Rights Activist

October 2014

Janet Collins

Janet Collins

Prima Ballerina
Sammy Davis, Jr.

Sammy Davis, Jr.

Actor, Singer, Comedian, & Dancer
Fannie Lou Hamer

Fannie Lou Hamer

Civil Rights Activist & Philanthropist
John Singleton

John Singleton

Director, Producer, & Screenwriter

September 2014

Josephine Baker

Josephine Baker

Dancer, Singer, Actress, Civil Rights Activist, & Spy
DJ Grandmaster Flash

DJ Grandmaster Flash

Hip-Hop Recording Artist & DJ
Public Enemy

Public Enemy

Hip-Hop Recording Group
Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold

Women's Rights Activist, Author, Educator, Civil Rights Activist, & Painter

May - August 2014

Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby

Actor, Comedian, & Producer
Pam Grier

Pam Grier

Actress
Billie Holiday

Billie Holiday

Singer, Songwriter, & Actress
Tupac Shakur

Tupac Shakur

Actor & Hip-Hop Recording Artist

January - April 2014

Jesse Owens

Jesse Owens

Professional Track & Field Athlete
Richard Pryor

Richard Pryor

Actor, Comedian, & Screenwriter
Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson

Professional Baseball Athlete

August - December 2013

Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin

Singer & Actress
Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry

Playwright & Writer
Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson

Singer, Music Producer, Songwriter, & Dancer
Booker T. Washington

Booker T. Washington

Educator & Civil Rights Activist

May - July 2013

Louis Armstrong

Louis Armstrong

Musician
W.E.B. Du Bois

W.E.B. Du Bois

Sociologist, Historian, Activist, Author, & Editor
James Baldwin

James Baldwin

Novelist, Essayist, Playwright, Poet, & Social Critic
Big Daddy Kane

Big Daddy Kane

Rapper, Actor, Producer, & Model

January - April 2013

James Brown

James Brown

Musician, Producer, Dancer, & Bandleader
George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver

Scientist, Botanist, Educator, & Inventor
“Sugar” Ray Robinson

“Sugar” Ray Robinson

Professional Boxing Athlete
Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Civil Rights & Women's Rights Activist

December 2012

Hank Aaron

Hank Aaron

Professional Baseball Athlete
Mary McLeod Bethune

Mary McLeod Bethune

Educator, Author, & Civil Rights Leader
Madam C.J. Walker

Madam C.J. Walker

Entrepreneur & Philanthropist

July - November 2012

Miles Davis

Miles Davis

Musician
Dorothy Jean Dandridge

Dorothy Jean Dandridge

Singer & Actress
Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes

Poet, Social Activist, Novelist, Playwright, & Columnist
Sojourner Truth

Sojourner Truth

African-American Abolitionist & Women's Rights Activist

March - June 2012

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

Writer, Dancer, & African-American Activist
Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

Civil Rights Activist
Zora Hurston

Zora Neale Hurston

Folklorist, Anthropologist, & Author

January - February 2012

Marcus Garvey

Marcus Garvey

Political Leader, Publisher/Journalist, Entrepreneur, & Orator
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Civil Rights Clergyman, Activist, & Leader
Malcolm X

Malcolm X

Muslim Minister & Human Rights Activist

Oct. - December 2011

The Black Panther Party

The Black Panther Party

African-American Activist/Freedom Fighters
Melvin Van Peebles

Melvin Van Peebles

Actor, Director, Screenwriter, Playwright, Novelist, & Composer
Shaka Zulu

Shaka Zulu

Military Commander