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Exclusive 21st Century List of African-American firsts


 

21st Century

2000s

  • 2001
First African-American Secretary of State: Colin Powell
First African-American president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: Wilton Daniel Gregory
First African-American president of the Unitarian Universalist Association: Rev. William G. Sinkford
First African-American president of an Ivy League university: Ruth J. Simmons at Brown University, also the first permanent female president of Brown.
First African-American woman to win the ASCAP Pop Music Songwriter of the Year award: Beyoncé Knowles
First African-American woman to be appointed National Security Advisor: Condoleezza Rice (See also: 2005)
First African-American billionaire: Robert L. Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television (see also 2002)
First African-American female billionaire: Sheila Johnson
  • 2002
First African-American woman to win the Academy Award for Best Actress: Halle Berry (Monster’s Ball, 2001)
First African-American Winter Olympic gold medal winner: Vonetta Flowers (two-woman bobsleigh). (See also: Shani Davis, 2006)
First African American to become majority owner of a U.S. major sports league team: Robert L. Johnson (Charlotte Bobcats, NBA)[61] (see also 2001)
First African-American female combat pilot in the U.S. Armed Services: Captain Vernice Armour, USMC
First African American to hold the #1 rank in tennis: Venus Williams, February 25, 2002.
First African American to hold the year-end #1 rank in tennis: Serena Williams
First African American to be named year-end world champion by the International Tennis Federation: Serena Williams
First African-American Arena Football League head coach to win ArenaBowl: Darren Arbet (San Jose SaberCats), ArenaBowl XVI
First African-American general manager in the National Football League: Ozzie Newsome (Baltimore Ravens)
  • 2003
First African American to win a Career Grand Slam in tennis: Serena Williams (See also: Althea Gibson, 1956; Arthur Ashe, 1968)
  • 2004
First African American General Manager for World Wrestling Entertainment: Theodore Long
First African American to win Broadway theater’s Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play: Phylicia Rash?d
First African-American NBA general manager to win the NBA Finals: Joe Dumars (Detroit Pistons), 2004 NBA Finals
First African-American Canadian Football League Head Coach to win the Grey Cup: Pinball Clemons (Toronto Argonauts), 92nd Grey Cup
  • 2005
First African-American woman appointed Secretary of State: Condoleezza Rice (See also: 2001)
First African-American woman U.S. Coast Guard aviator: Jeanine Menze
  • 2006
First African-American individual Winter Olympic gold medal winner: Shani Davis (men’s 1,000 meter speed skating) (See also: Vonetta Flowers, 2002)
First African-American Extreme Championship Wrestling champion: Bobby Lashley[62]
First African American to command a United States Marine Corps division: Major General Walter E. Gaskin
First African American to reach the peak of Mount Everest: Sophia Danenberg
  • 2007
First African-American Governor of Massachusetts: Deval Patrick
First African-American NFL head coaches to reach the Super Bowl: Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy, Super Bowl XLI[63]
First African-American NFL head coach to win the Super Bowl: Tony Dungy (Indianapolis Colts), Super Bowl XLI
First known African-American woman to reach the North Pole: Barbara Hillary[64]
First African-American female professional wrestler to win the NWA World Women’s Championship: Amazing Kong
  • 2008
First African American to be nominated as a major-party U.S. presidential candidate: Barack Obama, Democratic Party
First African American to referee a Super Bowl game: Mike Carey (Super Bowl XLII)
First African-American NFL general manager to win the Super Bowl: Jerry Reese (New York Giants), Super Bowl XLII
First African-American woman elected Speaker of a state House of Representatives: California Rep. Karen Bass
First African-American governor of New York State: David Paterson (elected as lieutenant governor, succeeded on resignation of previous governor)
First African American to own a movie and TV studio: Tyler Perry
First African American elected President of the United States: Barack Obama
First African American to be appointed to the United States Senate by a state governor: Roland Burris
First African-American female combat pilot in the United States Air Force: Major Shawna Rochelle Kimbrell
  • 2009
First African-American President of the United States: Barack Obama
First African-American First Lady of the United States: Michelle Obama
First African-American chair of the Republican National Committee: Michael Steele (See also: 2002)
First African-American United States Attorney General: Eric Holder
First African-American woman United States Ambassador to the United Nations: Susan Rice
First African-American United States Trade Representative: Ron Kirk
First African-American woman Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency: Lisa P. Jackson
First African-American White House Social Secretary: Desirée Rogers
First African American to appear by himself on a circulating U.S. coin: Duke Ellington (District of Columbia quarter).[65]
First African American to win the Pulitzer Prize for History: Annette Gordon-Reed, The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family
First African-American Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration: Charles F. Bolden, Jr.
First African-American woman rabbi: Alysa Stanton
First African-American woman CEO of an S&P 100 Company: Ursula Burns, Xerox Corporation.
First African-American doubles team to be named year-end world champion by the International Tennis Federation: Serena and Venus Williams
First African-American to win an Academy Awards for an Adapted screenplay (Push by Sapphire) Geoffrey S. Fletcher
First African-American Disney Princess: Tiana

2010s

  • 2010
First African-American to win the WWE Diva’s Championship: Alicia Fox
First African-American Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court: Roderick L. Ireland
Source: Wikipedia

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