Jackie Robinson (Wikipedia Commons); Tiger Woods (Wikipedia Commons); Mae Jemison (Wikipedia Commons)

On April 13, 1997, Tiger Woods became the first African American to win the Masters. Here are 16 other black trailblazers who have broken barriers and set records for future African Americans to follow in their footsteps.

Maya Angelou  

Courtesy of Maya Angelou 

Angelou is the first African-American poet to participate in a presidential inaugural ceremony. She recited her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at Bill Clinton’s inauguration in 1993.

Tyra Banks

Jason Merritt/Getty Images

In 1997 Banks became the first black woman to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated in a solo shoot. For the cover’s 10-year anniversary, she donned the same pink-and-white polka-dot swimsuit.

Carol Moseley Braun

Wikimedia Commons

Braun became the first black woman elected to the U.S. Senate in 1992. She served as an Illinois senator from 1993 to 1999. Braun ran unsuccessfully for president in 2004 and for mayor of Chicago in 2011.

Gabby Douglas  

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

At the 2012 Summer Olympics, Douglas became the first African-American gymnast to win the individual all-round competition.

L. Douglas Wilder  

Wikipedia Commons

In 1989 Wilder became the first African American to be elected governor in the U.S. since Reconstruction. He was governor of Virginia from 1990 to 1994 and was later elected mayor of Richmond.

John Singleton

Wikipedia Commons

Singleton was the first African American to be nominated for best director at the Academy Awards. He was nominated for his debut film, Boyz N the Hood, in 1991 but lost to Jonathan Demme for Silence of the Lambs.

Mae Jemison

Wikipedia Commons

Jemison is the first African-American female astronaut. In 1992 she flew into space aboard the Endeavour. Twenty years later she talked to The Root about focusing on science literacy for African-American children.

Thurgood Marshall

Wikipedia Commons

Marshall was the first black Supreme Court justice. He argued Brown v. Board of Education before the court in 1954 and was appointed to the court in 1967, where he served for 24 years.

Keija Minor

Kris Connor/Getty Images

In 2012 Minor became the first African-American editor-in-chief of a Condé Nast publication when she was selected to lead Brides magazine.

Don Thompson

Courtesy of McDonald’s 

Thompson is the first African-American CEO and president of McDonald’s Corp. He took the reins in 2012 after 23 years with the company.

The Rev. Fred Luter Jr.

Courtesy of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church

Luter is the first black president of the mostly white Southern Baptist Convention. He is the pastor of the Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans.

Charlayne Hunter-Gault

Courtesy of Yale University

In 1961 Hunter-Gault became the first African-American woman to integrate the University of Georgia. Another first? In 1988 she became the first black commencement speaker at her alma mater.

Jackie Robinson

Wikipedia Commons

Robinson was the first African American to play major-league baseball. In 1947 he signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers and later led them to a win in the World Series in 1955.

Aretha Franklin  

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Franklin became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

Three 6 Mafia

Wikipedia Commons

Three 6 Mafia is the first rap group to win an Oscar. The group won in 2006 for best original song for “It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp,” on the 2005 Hustle & Flow soundtrack.

Norm Lewis  

Wikipedia Commons

Lewis (Olivia’s old boo on Scandal) has been tapped as the first African American to play the lead role in Phantom of the Opera on Broadway.

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