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34 Historic Moments That Should Have Happened Waaay Before 2018

Beyonce Knowles, Jordan Peele, Ilhan Omar, Sandra Oh, and many, many more.

1. Sandra Oh became the first Asian actor to be nominated for a Best Actress Emmy Award in the show's 69-year-history...

Having previously received five (!!!) Emmy nods for Best Supporting Actress In A Drama Series for her role as Dr. Christina Yang on Grey's Anatomy, Oh was up for the Best Actress award for her critically-acclaimed performance in Killing Eve. The Korean-American actor told The Cut that when she first received the script, she'd assumed she was up for another supporting role and not the actual lead. "[So] many years of being seen [a certain way], it deeply, deeply, deeply affects us," she said. "It’s like, how does racism define your work? Oh my goodness, I didn’t even assume when being offered something that I would be one of the central storytellers."
Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

Having previously received five (!!!) Emmy nods for Best Supporting Actress In A Drama Series for her role as Dr. Christina Yang on Grey's Anatomy, Oh was up for the Best Actress award for her critically-acclaimed performance in Killing Eve. The Korean-American actor told The Cut that when she first received the script, she'd assumed she was up for another supporting role and not the actual lead. "[So] many years of being seen [a certain way], it deeply, deeply, deeply affects us," she said. "It’s like, how does racism define your work? Oh my goodness, I didn’t even assume when being offered something that I would be one of the central storytellers."

2. ...And the first ever Asian person tapped to host the Golden Globe Awards (or ANY major televised U.S. awards show, for that matter.)

That includes the Golden Globes, the Oscars, the Emmys, and the Tonys. Oh will actually be co-hosting next year's Golden Globes alongside Andy Samberg. Fun fact: the two actors presented the award for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series at last year's Emmys.
Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

That includes the Golden Globes, the Oscars, the Emmys, and the Tonys. Oh will actually be co-hosting next year's Golden Globes alongside Andy Samberg. Fun fact: the two actors presented the award for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series at last year's Emmys.

3. Kristine E. Guillaume is the first black woman to serve as President of The Harvard Crimson in the paper's 145-year history.

Wrapped up an amazing summer @CBSEveningNews in DC last week — so grateful to have learned so much at the bureau, around Washington, and inside Alexandria’s courthouse throughout this opportunity. Thank you to the whole Evening News and DC bureau team!

According to The Harvard Crimson, Guillaume is a sophomore pursuing a joint-degree in African American Studies and Literature. Her previous Crimson experience includes reporting on the university's 2018 presidential search and serving as one of three Chairs of the paper's Diversity and Inclusion committee. Guillaume's tenure begins Jan. 1 of next year.

4. Rihanna became the first black woman to appear on the cover of British Vogue's September issue in its 102-year history...

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5. ...Priyanka Chopra became the first Indian woman to have a solo Vogue cover in the publication's 125-year history...

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6. ...And 23-year-old Tyler Mitchell became the first black photographer to photograph a Vogue cover.

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"This is as much about forming firsts as it is about leaving legacies," Mitchell wrote on Instagram. "Here’s @beyonce by me for the September 2018 issue of American Vogue. Honored to have worked with such an icon."

7. Beyoncé became the first black woman to headline Coachella in the music festival's 19-year history.

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8. Gymnast Simone Biles made history as the first woman to win four all-around world titles and five U.S. all-around titles.

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9. Sharice Davids of Kansas and Deb Haaland of New Mexico became the first Native American women elected to Congress...

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Davids is a member of the Ho-Chunk Nation while Haaland is an enrolled member of the Pueblo of Laguna, CNN reported. "I am so honored to be a part of this time in history when so many new voices are being included in our national discussion," Davids wrote on Instagram. "It will be a special privilege to serve alongside [Deb Haaland]. I am inspired by the incredible work she has done for her community and am grateful for her friendship and support."

10. ...And joining them will be the first Muslim women elected to Congress: Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota.

Get ready! @IlhanMN and I are coming to Washington. #sisterhood

BTW this isn't the first time they've broken political boundaries: In 2016, Omar became the first Somali-American and Muslim legislator in the U.S. (she's now the the first ever refugee and the first Somali-American woman elected to Congress.) And before Tlaib was elected the first Palestinian-American congresswoman, she made history in 2008 by becoming the first Muslim woman to be elected to any U.S. state legislature.

11. State Senator Sylvia Garcia and former El Paso County Judge Veronica Escobar are the first Latinas to represent Texas in Congress.

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12. Andy Kim became New Jersey's first Asian-American congressman.

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The 36-year-old Korean American who had never run for office beat two-term GOP incumbent Tom McArthur. "I never thought that I would run for Congress," Kim said in a video announcing his candidacy, NJ.com reported.

13. John Liu and Kevin Thomas became the first Asian-Americans elected to the New York State Senate.

The first Asians in the NY State Senate @LiuNewYork

“It’s nice to be among the first, but we should have had Asian-Americans in the state senate long ago,” Liu told HuffPost. This isn't his first first either: Liu made history when he became the first Asian-American elected to an NYC citywide office in 2001 and the city's first Asian-American comptroller in 2010. Both American senators-elect are also immigrants, with Liu having emigrated from Taiwan at age five and Thomas from India at age 10.

14. Nima Kulkarni became the first Indian-American elected to serve as a state representative in Kentucky.

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15. And William Tong made history by becoming Connecticut's first-ever Asian-American attorney general (and the country's second-ever), making him the first to win a statewide office in the New England state.

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He's also the country's first-ever Chinese-American attorney general.

16. Tiffany Haddish became the first black woman to host the MTV Movie & TV Awards in its 26-year history.

And the award-winning comic also made history last year when she became the first black women stand-up comedian and 11th black woman to host Saturday Night Live since its launch in 1975 (aka 834 episodes later).
Kevin Winter / Getty Images

And the award-winning comic also made history last year when she became the first black women stand-up comedian and 11th black woman to host Saturday Night Live since its launch in 1975 (aka 834 episodes later).

17. New Orleans-based Chef Nina Compton made history by becoming the first black woman to receive a prestigious James Beard Award for Best Chef in the South since its inception in 1998.

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The St.Lucia-native opened Compère Lapin in 2015. "I wasn’t expecting to win and had no speech prepared and forgot to thank my family especially my granny who I was the best cook I know!" Compton wrote on Instagram. Additionally, she and Chef Mashama Bailey (below) were also the first black women nominated for overall Best Chef in the culinary awards' 27-year history.

18. ...And Georgia-based Chef Mashama Bailey was cast for season 6 of Chef's Table, becoming the first black chef profiled on the acclaimed Netflix series.

Bailey serves as executive chef and co-founding partner at The Grey in Savannah, Georgia. Eater crowned the establishment Best Restaurant of the Year in 2017. "The fare—with its nuanced wielding of spices, its adoration of vegetables, and its telltale bacon smokiness that rattles through so many dishes like a train whistling in the distance—all hearken not only to a place, but also to a person," wrote Bill Addison. "This is reclamation cuisine. Bailey has found her home, and the Grey’s enthralling story has actualized into a triumphant reality."
Neilson Barnard

Bailey serves as executive chef and co-founding partner at The Grey in Savannah, Georgia. Eater crowned the establishment Best Restaurant of the Year in 2017. "The fare—with its nuanced wielding of spices, its adoration of vegetables, and its telltale bacon smokiness that rattles through so many dishes like a train whistling in the distance—all hearken not only to a place, but also to a person," wrote Bill Addison. "This is reclamation cuisine. Bailey has found her home, and the Grey’s enthralling story has actualized into a triumphant reality."

19. This Is Us star Sterling K. Brown became the first black actor to win a SAG Award for Best Actor in a Drama Series in its 23-year history.

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20. He also became the first black actor to win a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a TV Drama in its 75-history.

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21. Victoria Mahoney was tapped by J.J. Abrams to serve as second unit director for the upcoming Star Wars film, making her the franchise's first black woman director.

Happy to share this historic news. A black woman directing stories in a galaxy far, far away. First unit director #JJAbrams. Second unit director @VictoriaMahoney. #StarWarsE9 #StarWars

22. Get Out writer-director Jordan Peele became the first black writer to win an Oscar for best original screenplay in the category's 78-year history.

Frederic J. Brown / AFP / Getty Images

23. FANDOM reported that Malorie Blackman made history as the first-ever person of color to write a Doctor Who episode in the show's 55-year history...

Five years after becoming the first black Children's Laureate, Blackman penned the critically-acclaimed episode Rosa for the revived British science fiction TV show.
Tristan Fewings / Getty Images

Five years after becoming the first black Children's Laureate, Blackman penned the critically-acclaimed episode Rosa for the revived British science fiction TV show.

24. ...While Mark Tonderai, who directed Blackman's episode, made history as the first black person to direct a Doctor Who episode...

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25. ...And Vinay Patel became the first person of Asian descent to write a Doctor Who episode.

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Patel's episode "Demons of the Punjab" takes an intimate look at The Partition of India, an event in which the South Asian country was hastily split into two separate states—Pakistan and India—over six weeks after gaining independence from the United Kingdom in 1947. As RadioTimes reports, this division resulted in mass displacement and the deaths of up to a million people.

“Obviously, you can’t tell the whole history of partition in 50 minutes, especially when you have other elements in it," Patel told RadioTimes. "But I feel we did a good job of making this episode the story of the people who are our guest characters, and that felt important of me: to give them the balance of the episode.”

26. Jordan Greenway became the first black player to compete on an Olympic U.S. hockey team.

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27. Four-time NCAA All American athlete Simidele Adeagbo became the first black woman to compete in the skeleton event at the Winter Olympics.

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28. Erin Jackson became the first black woman to compete on an Olympic U.S. long-track skating team.

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She qualified for this year's Winter Games with only four months of experience speedskating on ice.

29. And 18-year-old Maame Afua Biney became the first black woman to compete on an Olympic U.S. speed skating team.

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30. Earlier this year, Ava DuVernay helmed the Disney remake of A Wrinkle In Time, making her the first black woman to direct a $100 million-grossing film.

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31. Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald were commissioned to painted the first ever black presidential portraits.

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32. Chef Dominique Crenn became the first woman in the US to win three Michelin stars, the highest possible rating from the restaurant industry's most esteemed 13-year-old American review guide.

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She received the honor for her San Francisco restaurant Atelier Crenn.

33. SOPHIE is the first openly trans artist to be nominated for a Grammy award in the Best Dance/Electronic Album in the category's 13-year history.

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34. And Dana Scruggs photographed Travis Scott for Rolling Stone, reportedly making her the first black person to shoot a cover for the 51-year-old magazine.

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HERE'S TO BREAKING MORE BARRIERS IN 2019!!!

MPI Media Group / Via m.youtube.com
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