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February 28, 2015

From Selma to Ferguson: Keep Hope Alive!

The demands for justice in Ferguson, coupled with the recent speeches by New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton and FBI Director James Comey, are indeed reasons to keep hope alive!

Here's What Happened When Detroit Youth Got Real With Police

James Craig Detroit
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Someone Should Have Warned Kid Rock Not To Mess With Queen Bey

Kid Rock Beyonce
Associated Press

Protests Erupt Over UNC Board's Decision To Shutter Poverty Center

North Carolina
Lance King via Getty Images

The Reason I Do NOT Think This Is Blackface

Claudio Cutugno
Andreas Rentz via Getty Images

KKK Was Terrorizing America Decades Before Islamic State Appeared

Kkk
Photo 12 via Getty Images

Black Lives Matter to Labor

Fast Food Workers Protest
Elijah Nouvelage via Getty Images

10 Must-See Black Landmarks At Your Fingertips

Little Rock Central High School
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Three Years After Trayvon Martin Killing, Two Women's Lives Intersect

Sybrina Fulton
Scott Olson via Getty Images

Bill Cosby Says His Career Is 'Far From Finished'

Bill Cosby
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Life in Prison for Selling $20 Of Weed

Black Person Prison
Dietmar Klement via Getty Images

America's Unfair Rules Of The Road

Riding Public Bus
Fabiana Domingues via Getty Images

When Whites Get A Free Pass

White Privilege
Lisa Cranshaw via Getty Images

How To Create A Sustainable Black Future

Ferguson Protest
MICHAEL B. THOMAS via Getty Images

Derrick Rose Releases Inspirational Commercial Days After Injury News

Youtube
YouTube

After Years Of Taking Questions, Obama Turns The Tables On One Teen

Barack Obama
JIM WATSON via Getty Images

As Selma Anniversary Nears, Here Are The Lawmakers Actually Trying To Strengthen Voting Rights

Patrick Leahy
Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

50 Cent Shares His New Thoughts On Fox's 'Empire'

50 Cent Empire
YouTube

Nevada GOP Pushes New Gun Law Reminiscent Of 'Stand Your Ground'

Roberson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Everything We Know About The Alleged Dez Bryant Video

Dez Bryant
Tom Pennington via Getty Images

Texas Sports Anchor Delivers Stirring Anti-Racism Speech

Hansen
YouTube

San Francisco Police Officer Hits, Kicks Homeless Man Who Slept On Bus (VIDEO)

Pepper Spray Bus
San Francisco Public Defender

Tennessee Lawmaker Denies Controversial Comments Were Racially Charged

Tennessee Capital Building
Visions of America via Getty Images

'Stand Your Ground' Laws Are Still On The Books In 22 States

Trayvon Martin
File Photo

Warren Moon: Marshawn Lynch ‘Isn't A Dumb Kid' When It Comes To The Media, Won't Retire'

Warren Moon
Kevin Mazur via Getty Images

U.S. Criminal Deportations and the Future of Black Immigrants

African With Us Flag
Ailbhe O'Donnell via Getty Images

Marissa Alexander, The One Who Lived

Marissa Alexander
ASSOCIATED PRESS

How My Dad Became A Black Queer Feminist

Queer Black Feminism
HPL

STUDY: Diverse Casts Deliver Higher Ratings

Fast And Furious
Universal

3 Sentenced For Racist Attack That Killed Black Man

Deryl Dedmon
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Science Shows What's Happening Inside The Brains Of Blind Musicians Like Stevie Wonder

Stevie Wonder Smile
Jim Ross/Invision/AP

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Raven-Symone To Play Gay Character On 'Black-ish'

Raven Symone
Tommaso Boddi via Getty Images

Bella Thorne Opens Up About That Controversial Zendaya Hair Comment

Bella Thorne
YouTube

'How To Get Away With Murder' Recap: Nothing Good Ever Happens In A Basement

Its All My Fault
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HBO Is Determined To Tackle Its Diversity Problem

Girls
HBO

5 Big Reveals From 'How To Get Away With Murder' Season 1 Finale

How To Get Away With Murder
ABC

Moschino Pays Homage To The Looney Tunes' Hip Hop Days

Moschino
Catwalking via Getty Images

Naomi Campbell Will Have You Feeling Déjà Vu (And Not In A Good Way)

Naomi Campbell
Tim P. Whitby via Getty Images

The Unsettling Racial Satire America Needs Right Now

Welcometobraggsville
William Morrow

Halle Berry Always Has 'A Hard Time Getting Roles'

Halle Berry
Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP

Kanye West: 'Exclusivity Is The New N-Word'

Kanye West
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ice-T Reveals He's Actually The Voice Of 'Dora The Explorer'

Icet
NBC/Nickelodeon

Oh No! Lupita's Oscar Dress Was Stolen

Lupita Nyongo
Steve Granitz via Getty Images

7 Times When Cookie Spoke The Truth On 'Empire'

Cookie Empire
FOX via Getty Images

No Respect For Hip-Hop's O.G.s: Why Many Legendary MCs Still Need To Hustle

Public Enemy
John Davisson/Invision/AP

'Empire' Co-Creator Is 'Gutted' By The Bill Cosby Allegations

Lee Daniels
Arnold Turner/Invision/AP

Here's The Timberwolves' 'Welcome Home' Video For Kevin Garnett

Garnett
YouTube

Apparently This Is How Kim Kisses Kanye

Kim Licks Kanye
Insttagram

Will Smith Continues His Nostalgia Streak With 'Summertime'

Will Smith Jimmy Kimmel
Randy Holmes via Getty Images

Beyoncé's Workout Video Is BEYond Motivational

Beyonce Workout
Instagram

Everything You Need To Know About That Beyoncé College Class

Beyonce
John Shearer/Invision/AP

Mic Check: Here's Why Hip Hop Hasn't Grown up Yet

John Legend
Kevin Winter via Getty Images

Kelly Osbourne Threatens To Quit Fashion Police' Over Zendaya Controversy

Zendaya Kelly Osbourne
Cindy Ord via Getty Images

Kanye West Just Debuted Another New Track

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Brit Awards

LeBron James Wants College Coaches To Stop Recruiting His 10-Year-Old Son

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Instagram

Damon Wayans Comedy Tour Sidelined

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Bobby Brown Cancels Australian Tour To Spend Time With Bobbi Kristina

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Kris Connor/BET via Getty Images

How 'Empire' Co-Creator Drew On His Firsthand Experience With Homophobia

Empire Lee Daniels
Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

Shonda Rhimes Was Not A Fan Of Lady Gaga's Oscars Performance

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Watch LeBron James Diss McDonald's, Then Remember They Pay Him

Lebron James
Allen Einstein via Getty Images

Oprah Winfrey: The Woman Who's Doing It All

Comments (33)


This weekend, media mogul Oprah Winfrey celebrates her 57th birthday. And while she is one of the richest and most influential people in the world, life for her "ain't been no crystal stair." Like the Langston Hughes poem, her journey has had tacks in it, pulled up boards, and splinters; but it's also had plenty of shining moments.

Her life has been filled with seemingly insurmountable odds -- poor, pregnant by age 14, molested by relatives. It is often said that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger and as a testament to this saying, Winfrey has excelled as a media mogul, branding herself in film, TV, publishing, and radio.

But she's also used her name and resources to open doors for so many others.

Born into a family of meager financial means in Kosciusko, Mississippi, Winfrey learned early on in life that the world was often a cruel place for young, black girls.

Like the characters portrayed in the novels of some of the black women authors she came to admire later in life, such as Toni Morrison and Maya Angelou, Oprah yearned to be seen and to be loved.

And through all of her adversity, she found her voice. And it would prove to be her bread and butter. She attended Tennessee State University, but left prematurely to begin a career in broadcasting at Nashville's WTVF-TV (she was awarded her BA in Speech and Performing Arts from TSU in 1987). Before becoming an ABC news affiliate in Baltimore, Maryland, Oprah became the youngest and first black woman to anchor the news in Nashville.


Her talent in front of the camera took her from news anchor to television talk show host; the most successful talk show host in history to be exact.

Realizing how valuable she was to the television market, she strategically began to brand and position herself to exceed talk show host status. This meant creating her production company, Harpo Productions as well as her own TV studio, Harpo Studios. This also meant that she would become a household name, and remain one for no less than 25 years to come.
Rather than ask what has Oprah done, a better question to ask is what hasn't she done?

From launching the successful careers of Dr. Phil and Rachael Ray, to helping President Barack Obama make history and unveiling her very OWN TV network, Oprah is a woman who has done it and is doing it all.

Join BlackVoices.com in celebrating the life and times of the powerful woman born Orpah Gail Winfrey.


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