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by shadowlover_69 | created - 18 Jul 2012 | updated - 20 Jul 2012 | Public

1. Angela Bassett

Actress | Strange Days

Captivating, gifted, and sensational, Angela Bassett's presence has been felt in theaters, stages, and television screens throughout the world. Angela Evelyn Bassett was born on August 16, 1958 in New York City, to Betty Jane (Gilbert), a social worker, and Daniel Benjamin Bassett, a preacher's son...

2. Vanessa Williams

Actress | Ugly Betty

Vanessa Lynn Williams was born in Millwood, New York, to Helen L. (Tinch) and Milton Augustine Williams, Jr., both music teachers. Vanessa and her brother grew up in suburban New York in comfortable surroundings. Vanessa sang and danced in school productions and signed her high school yearbook with...

3. Phylicia Rashad

Actress | The Cosby Show

Phylicia Rashad was born in Houston, Texas, to African-American parents, Vivian Elizabeth (Ayers), a poet and art director, and Andrew Arthur Allen, an orthodontist. As a child, Phylicia, her older brother Andrew (called Tex), and younger sister, dancer and actress Debbie Allen, lived in Mexico. ...

4. Lynn Whitfield

Actress | Eve's Bayou

With roots that lead back to Louisiana southern aristocracy, lovely leading lady Lynn Whitfield was born in 1953, the eldest of four children and a third-generation BFA graduate from Howard University. Her dentist father was instrumental in developing Lynn's initial interest in acting as he was a ...

5. Kellita Smith

Actress | The Bernie Mac Show

Kellita Smith was born January 15, 1969 as Kellita A. Smith in Chicago, Illinois. She is an actress who has appeared on House Party 3 (1994), The Bernie Mac Show (2001-2006), Sister, Sister (1994-1999), Moesha (1996-2001), In Living Color (1990-1994), Living Single (1993-1998), and The First Family...

6. Jo Marie Payton

Actress | Family Matters

JoMarie Payton was born in in Albany, Georgia on August 3, 1950. Her father, Driscoll Payton, was a construction worker and mother, Frankie Bell Payton, was a maid. They moved to the Miami suburb of Opa-Locka, Florida in 1950. JoMarie was the second of nine children.

JoMarie's first performance on ...

7. Janet Hubert

Actress | The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

Janet Louise Hubert was born in Chicago, IL. She is best known for playing the sassy, witty, outgoing, protective mom on the hit TV sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990).

Janet Hubert spent most of her childhood growing up in Momence, IL. That changed when she won a scholarship to Julliard ...

8. Pam Grier

Actress | Jackie Brown

Pam Grier was born in Winston-Salem, NC, one of four children of Gwendolyn Sylvia (Samuels), a nurse, and Clarence Ransom Grier Jr., an Air Force mechanic. Pam has been a major African-American star from the early 1970s. Her career started in 1971, when Roger Corman of New World Pictures launched ...

9. Tichina Arnold

Actress | Martin

Tichina Arnold was born on June 28, 1969 in Queens, New York, USA as Tichina Rolanda Arnold. She is an actress, known for Martin (1992), Everybody Hates Chris (2005) and Survivor's Remorse (2014). She has been married to Rico Hines since August 18, 2012. She was previously married to Lamon Brewster.

10. Kathleen Bradley

Actress | Friday

Kathleen Bradley was born on January 10, 1951 in Girard, Ohio, USA. She is an actress, known for Friday (1995), Grey's Anatomy (2005) and Troop Beverly Hills (1989). She has been married to Terrence Redd since September 15, 1988. They have one child. She was previously married to Bill Overton.

11. Anna Maria Horsford

Actress | Minority Report

Anna Maria Horsford was born and raised in Harlem, New York. Her parents immigrated to the United States from the island nation Antigua & Barbuda, in the West Indies (then a British colony), during the 1940s. Anna grew up not really feeling American but not West Indian either, just somewhere in ...

12. BernNadette Stanis

Actress | Good Times

BernNadette Stanis is best known as Thelma from Good Times (1974), but there's much more to her than that. In the 1970s she was the personification of black beauty. As sophisticated and graceful as she was, she still became TV's first black sex symbol or "It" girl. Thelma/BernNadette and the Evans ...

13. Denise Burse

Actress | Black Mirror

Denise Burse was born on January 13, 1952 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. She is an actress, known for Black Mirror (2011), The Juror (1996) and Anesthesia (2015).

14. Wendy Williams

Actress | Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates

Wendy Williams was born on July 18, 1964 in Asbury Park, New Jersey, USA as Wendy Joan Williams. She is a writer and actress, known for Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates (2016), Think Like a Man (2012) and Think Like a Man Too (2014). She has been married to Kevin Hunter since November 30, 1997. ...

15. Alfre Woodard

Actress | Star Trek: First Contact

Alfre Woodard was born on November 8, 1952 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the youngest of three children of Constance, a homemaker, and Marion H. Woodard, an interior designer. She was named by her godmother, who claimed she saw a vision of Alfre's name written out in gold letters. A former high school ...

16. Loretta Devine

Actress | Crash

Loretta Devine was born August 21, 1949 in Houston, Texas, to Eunice O'Neal (née Toliver), a beautician, and James Devine, who worked as a laborer. Loretta grew up in the Acres Home area of Houston and later enrolled at the University of Houston, where she earned a a Bachelor of Arts in Speech and ...

17. Beverly Johnson

Actress | Loaded Weapon 1

Beverly Johnson was born on October 13, 1952 in Buffalo, New York, USA. She is an actress and producer, known for Loaded Weapon 1 (1993), Martin (1992) and The Meteor Man (1993). She was previously married to Danny Sims and Billy Potter.

18. Jenifer Lewis

Actress | The Princess and the Frog

Jenifer Lewis is one of Hollywood's most familiar faces, with more than 300 appearances in film and television. Dubbed a "national treasure" by TV Guide.com, Jenifer stars on the hit show Black-ish (ABC), where her hilarious portrayal of "Ruby Johnson" earned her a nomination for the 2016 Critics ...

19. Sheryl Lee Ralph

Actress | Oliver & Company

Sheryl Lee Ralph was born December 30, 1956 in Waterbury, Connecticut, USA. She is known for her roles in Moesha (1996), Its A Living (1980), and Instant Mom (2013). Her Career Began in the late 1970s. She has been Married to Vincent Hughes since July 30, 2005 a Pennsylvania state senator. She was ...

20. Jackée Harry

Actress | 227

Jackée Harry was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and reared from the age of nine in Harlem, New York, by her mother, Flossie. At the tender age of fourteen, Jackée landed the lead role of the King in her school's production of The King and I. Upon graduation from New York City's High School ...

21. Debbi Morgan

Actress | Eve's Bayou

Debbi Morgan was born September 20, 1956 in Dunn, North Carolina, to Lora and George Morgan, Jr., she moved to New York City when she was three months old. Her most memorable role was on the television series All My Children (1970). She played Angie Baxter. Her performance in the series earned her ...

22. Tina Turner

Soundtrack | Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

After almost fifty years in the music business, Tina Turner has become one of the most commercially-successful international female rock stars to date. Her sultry, powerful voice, her incredible legs, her time-tested beauty and her unforgettable story all contribute to her legendary status.

Tina ...

23. Telma Hopkins

Actress | The Love Guru

Telma Hopkins was born on October 28, 1948 in Louisville, Kentucky, USA as Telma Louise Hopkins. She is an actress, known for The Love Guru (2008), Half & Half (2002) and Family Matters (1989). She was previously married to Donald B. Alen.

24. Ja'net DuBois

Actress | Good Times

Ja'Net is a multi-talented and diverse performer. She grew up in Brooklyn, NY and began her career on Broadway. She has appeared in various plays, including "Golden Boy" with Sammy Davis Jr. and Louis Gossett Jr., and "A Raisin in the Sun".

Ja'Net moved onto TV roles, receiving a Peabody Award for a...

25. Ella Joyce

Actress | Set It Off

Ella Joyce was born on June 12, 1954 in Chicago, Illinois, USA as Cherron Hoye. She is an actress and producer, known for Set It Off (1996), Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor (2013) and Bubba Ho-Tep (2002). She is married to Dan Martin.

26. Regina Taylor

Actress | Courage Under Fire

While TV audiences best remember Regina Taylor for her empathic portrayal of housekeeper Lilly Harper in the critically lauded series I'll Fly Away (1991), which rewarded her with a Golden Globe for best actress, an NAACP Image Award, and two Emmy nominations, this Dallas-born talent has made even ...

27. Juanita Jennings

Actress | What Women Want

Juanita Jennings is an actress, known for What Women Want (2000), Basic Instinct (1992) and Runaway Jury (2003).

28. Lorraine Toussaint

Actress | Hudson Hawk

SAG Award and Critics Choice Award winner for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, Lorraine Toussaint shocked audiences on the smash hit Netflix original series "Orange is the New Black" as the viciously seductive inmate Vee. Toussaint's thrilling performance has won her glowing reviews from ...