Pioneer Women: Black Entertainers Who Did It First

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  • Halle Berry
  • Beyoncè
  • Tyra Banks
  • Aretha Franklin
  • Vanessa Williams
  • Esther Rolle
  • Cicely Tyson
  • Beverly Johnson
  • Ethel Waters
  • Whitney Houston
  • Ella Fitzgerald
  • Dorothy Dandridge
  • Hattie McDaniel
  • Beyonce, Vanessa Williams
  • Cheryl Boone Isaacs

Tyra Banks

In 1997, at the peak of her modeling career, Banks raised the bar by becoming the first Black woman to grace the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. The illustrious cover cemented her status as a supermodel and a trailblazer.

(Photo: Russell James/Sports Illustrated Magazine, February 1997)

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