Taraji P. Henson is an Academy Award-nominated actress, producer, and mental health advocate. In 2011, she was cast in the CBS crime-suspense series Person of Interest. From Watch The Yard: “Katherine Johnson, the main character in the movie who is played by Taraji P. Henson, was born on August 26th, 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, Greenbrier County, West Virginia and is currently an active member of the Lambda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha. Octavia Spencer, Taraji P. Henson and Janelle Monae star in # HiddenFigures, the amazing untold story centered on the women behind the Space Race victory. Dorothy worked in the Langley Research Center’s Analysis and Computation Division, and also participated in Scout Project (Solid Controlled Orbital Utility Test system) tests at Wallops Flight Facility. Because the county Johnson lived in did not offer schooling for blacks past the 8th grade, her parents sent her to school in Kanahwha County, West Virginia where she graduated from high school at the age of 14. Head to theaters on Jan. 6 to see this # DSTRedCarpet film and be sure to take a picture of yourself using the hashtag! [8][9][10][11] Her first and middle names are of Swahili origin: Taraji ("hope") and Penda ("love"). She also won a Golden Globe Award; and was nominated for Emmy Awards in 2015 and 2016. Henson has had a small stage career, appearing in August Wilson's Joe Turner's Come and Gone and the Pasadena Playhouse's Above the Fold. [54][55][56] His father, Henson's high-school sweetheart William LaMarr Johnson, was murdered in 2003. She was born in Washington, D.C., and raised in an apartment that she described as “one step up from the projects”. She also starred in an episode of Sister, Sister. In 2016, Time named Henson one of the 100 most influential people in the world. [12][13] According to a mitochondrial DNA analysis, her matrilineal lineage can be traced to the Masa people of Cameroon. "[6][15], Henson graduated from Oxon Hill High School in Oxon Hill, Maryland, in 1988. "They are cold, hungry, thirsty, vulnerable, and lonely. Earlier this year, we at WatchTheYard.com wrote a story on how the movie “Hidden Figures” starring Taraji P. Henson, Janelle Monáe and Octavia Spencer is based on three Black female mathematicians […] SISTERLY RELATIONS. The show seeks to prompt serious conversations about mental health and reduce the stigma associated with mental illness. She received praise for her performances as a prostitute in Hustle & Flow (2005), for which she received a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture nomination; and as a single mother of a disabled child in David Fincher's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008), for which she received Academy Award, SAG Award and Critics Choice Award nominations for Best Supporting Actress. He is a Central State University alum and is a proud member of Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc. [64], She announced to LiveKindly that, late in 2017, she had switched to a vegan diet to prevent stomach cancer. Hashish oil and marijuana were found inside the car. Spelman College board chair Rosalind Brewer, ... Taraji P. Henson - Howard University 4 of 15 5. [1] She attended North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, where she intended to study electrical engineering, before transferring to Howard University to study drama. 48.4K SharesShare48.4KTweetYou might not know it, but the women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. have some pretty strong connections to NASA and space travel. Garvey discusses rapper Kanye West postponing his new album, heavyweight champion Mike Tyson making a comeback to the boxing industry, and actress Taraji P. Henson in talks with FOX to launch a spin-off of the television series, Empire. Tucker, Neely (October 6, 2011). The deal includes developing projects for the network across multiple platforms. Keep them inside, where it's safe and warm. She is 98 years old. “I look up the terms and I still don’t know what they mean, just like I didn’t know what they meant when I was in high school.”. [citation needed] She has often spoken of the influence of her maternal grandmother, Patsy Ballard, who accompanied her at the Academy Awards the year she was nominated. [19] In an interview with Lauren Viera of the Chicago Tribune, she noted that "Queenie is the embodiment of unconditional love. The #MACTaraji collection debuted the following month. [22] Her portrayal of Rubin received positive reviews[23] and earned her several award nominations, including a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie. [32], Henson has guest-starred on several television shows, including The WB's Smart Guy, the Fox series House in 2005, and CBS's CSI: Crime Scene Investigation in 2006. [33][34] In the November 20, 2013 episode, "The Crossing," after co-starring for two and a half years, Henson's character, 'Joss' Carter was killed as part of the series's new storyline. In 2008 she appeared with Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,[18] where she played Queenie, Benjamin's mother, and for which she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Johnson is portrayed by Taraji P. Henson. She worked as a teacher at Robert R. Moton High School, in Farmville, Virginia and then moved to Newport News where she got a jobs as a mathematician at Langley Field for National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, the forerunner of today’s NASA space program, where she was among the first African Americans hired as mathematicians. [17], In 2005, Henson was in the independent film Hustle & Flow as Shug, the love interest of Terrence Howard, who portrayed the male lead DJay. Kappa Alpha Psi was founded on Jan. 5, 1911 and is the 2nd oldest existing collegiate historically Black Greek Letter Fraternity and the 1st intercollegiate Fraternity incorporated as a … Golden Globe-winning actor, writer, and producer Taraji P. Henson brings mental health awareness to social media with her new talk show, Peace of Mind with Taraji, which airs new episodes on Facebook Watch on Mondays and Wednesdays. Fox ordered the pilot in May 2014, and the series debuted on January 7, 2015 with positive critical reviews and wide commercial success. ABOUT. “Katherine Johnson, the main character in the movie who is played by Taraji P. Henson, was born on August 26th, 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, Greenbrier County, West Virginia and is currently an active member of the Lambda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha. Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. was founded on Howard University’s campus on January 13, 1913. "[59][60], A supporter of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Henson in January 2011 appeared nude in an ad for the I'd Rather Be Naked Than Wear Fur campaign. CHAPTER LOCATOR | MEMBERS ONLY. Henson, spent most of her summers as a child in Scotland Neck, NC a small town in between Rocky Mount and Ronoake Rapids, NC about an hour and a half from Raleigh, NC and 45 mins from VA stateline. [35], In February 2014, several months after her last Person of Interest episode, Henson was hired by Fox to star in Empire, a musical drama set in the hip hop recording industry,[36] where she plays Cookie Lyon opposite former Hustle & Flow costar Terrence Howard. Her recurring characters include Angela Scott on ABC's Eli Stone. Then there’s Wilberforce University grad Vaughan, who joined the Zeta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha at Wilberforce University in 1926: “…She was born on Sept. 20, 1910, in Kansas City, Mo., and obtained her Bachelor of Science in 1929 from Wilberforce University in Xenia, Ohio. All rights reserved. MEMBERSHIP. Alumni: Debbie Allen (dancer/actress), Zora Neal Hurston (author), Toni Morrison (Pulitzer-winning novelist), Phylicia Rashad (actress), Taraji P. Henson … Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Delta Beta Chapter Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Incorporated was founded in 1911 at Indiana University. [14] She has said that North Pole explorer Matthew Henson was "the brother of my great-great-grandfather. Finally, Jackson, played by Monae, was also a member of AKA and graduated from Hampton Institute, now University: “…She was born in 1921, in Hampton, Virginia and graduated with highest honors from high school.  She earned her Bachelor of Science Degrees in Mathematics and Physical Science at Hampton Institute and taught in Maryland before joining the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. Johnson, who is best known for calculating and verifying trajectories for NASA’s Mercury and Apollo programs and was celebrated in the 2016 Oscar-winning film Hidden Figures where she was played by Taraji P. Henson, passed away on Monday morning according to NASA. In January 2016, she won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama for Empire, becoming only the third African-American actress to take home the award after Gail Fisher (1972) and Regina Taylor (1992). The special was produced again in 2016 and 2017, without Howard. In an interview with USA Today the Howard University grad joked about playing a math whiz. [45], Henson made her singing debut in the film Hustle & Flow, where she provided the vocals for the Three 6 Mafia track "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp. "[20], Henson acted in two Tyler Perry films, The Family That Preys in 2008 and I Can Do Bad All By Myself in 2009. [51], Henson collaborated with MAC Cosmetics to create the Taraji P. Henson makeup collection in late August 2016. [68][69], In 2015, Henson won the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series (for Empire), and became the first black actress in the history of the awards show to do so.[72]. Of the three women, Johnson is the only one able to bask in the glory afforded by the film. Kamala Harris, a Howard woman, an Alpha woman and a Black woman, is now the vice president-elect of the United States, and sis has the students of Howard shaking in their boots. Tommy G. Meade Jr. is the Editor-in-Chief of HBCU Buzz. In 2015 she began starring as Cookie Lyon in the Fox drama series Empire, for which she became the first African-American woman to win a Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series. PRESIDENT. In 1939, after marrying her first husband, James Goble, she left her teaching job and enrolled in a graduate math program. In February 2019, Henson starred in What Men Want (based on the 2000 Mel Gibson romantic comedy What Women Want)[29] as a female sports agent, looked down upon by male colleagues, who gains the power to hear men's thoughts. Fort Valley Opens Military Intelligence Science Lab With Robins Air Force... Virginia Union Launches First National Center for the Study of HBCUs, Saint Augustine’s University Launches First Graduate Program In Its 154-Year History. [67], Henson is a Christian and considers acting to be a spiritual experience. [26] In March she starred in the film Tyler Perry's Acrimony as a faithful wife who, after tiring of standing by her husband, is enraged when she believes herself betrayed. In 2010, she appeared in the action comedy Date Night, and co-starred in the remake of The Karate Kid. [citation needed] Named after her father, it deals with cultural mental illness. [61][62] She joined PETA again for their 2013 campaign, "Be an Angel for Animals", where Henson posed with her family dog Uncle Willie. The Ivy Centennial Foundation, in conjunction with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Mu Lambda Omega Chapter and Sisters in S.T.E.M. [31], Henson was also slated to star in and produce an untitled film about Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black Chicago teen who was abducted, tortured, murdered, and dumped in a river by two white men while visiting rural Mississippi in 1955. [46] Henson and the group performed the song at the live Oscar ceremony on March 5, 2006. Taraji Penda Henson[1][2] (/təˈrɑːdʒi/ tə-RAH-jee; born September 11, 1970) is an American actress. $1 for 3 months. Copyright © 2020 L & Company. Taraji P. Henson Will Voice a Character in Wreck-It-Ralph 2 Who Name-Drops Oh My Disney! ‘Hidden Figures’ Movie To Tell Story Of Three AKAs Who Helped NASA... N.C. A&T Football Player Justin Cates Signs With CFL, High School Named After WSSU Basketball Legend Earl “The Pearl” Monroe, Morris Brown Receives $160K Gift To Establish ESports Center, Jackson State Lands Trevonte Rucker, One Of Its Highest-Rated Recruits, Spelman Partnership With Sotheby’s Institute of Art Shapes Future of Art…, Dual HBCU Grad Ruby L. Taylor, MSW Creates National Family Game…, FAMU Alum Jerry Lorenzo Named Global Head of Adidas Basketball, WATCH: HBCU Soul Roundtable with Jamie Foxx, Kemp Powers & HBCU…, Antebellum Demonstrating A Way Forward for Premiere Releases, Pivotal Justice for Black Girls Organization Created by Spelman Alumna, Best Platform for Downloading Video Games, Howard Dad Common Calls For More Support For HBCUs, Clinton Campaign Readies HBCU Outreach Effort For The Final Stretch, Wilberforce University Partners With Community Action to Support Distance Learning, Wilberforce Is Partnering With Apple To Bring Coding To Its Community, Wilberforce Receives $500,000 Grant From Dominion Energy In Clean Energy Initiative, Texas Southern Professor Appointed To Fulbright Board of Directors, New Petition Demands Tuskegee Board Members Be Removed. Meade formerly was a Staff Writer for HBCU Buzz. Hidden Figures will be released worldwide on Jan. 13. In 1937, at 18 years old, she graduated summa cum laude from undergrad and moved to Virginia to teach French and math at a grade school. Black greekdom is currently mourning the passing of NASA trailblazer and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. member Katherine Johnson. Lance Gross - Howard University She studied acting at Howard University and began her Hollywood career in guest roles on several television shows before making her breakthrough in Baby Boy (2001). Taraji P. Henson is set to play the main role. [48], Henson has made several appearances in music videos and television. Affion Crockett - Fayetteville State University 5 of 15 6. Henson will play Till's mother, Mamie, who chose an open-casket funeral for her son "so everyone can see what they did to my boy". [1][2][6][7] She has two younger siblings, Shawn and April. [44], In July 2020, it was reported that a spin-off Empire series focusing on Henson's character, Cookie Lyon, is in development, with Henson producing and starring. The movie is set around Katherine Johnson, a trailblazing NASA mathematician who calculated flight trajectories for Neil Armstrong and the 1969 Apollo 11 spaceflight to the Moon, and her two colleagues, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson (played by Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae), who helped NASA catch up in the Space Race. A video obtained by the Los Angeles Times showed Marcell had driven through a lighted crosswalk while a pedestrian was crossing, given verbal consent to search his vehicle, and admitted to smoking marijuana two hours before driving. The Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Delta Omega Omega and Alpha Rho Chapters, will host “AKA Day at the Movies” with a special showing of Hidden Figures.The event will be held at 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14, at the Pines Mall Theaters. In 2011, she starred in the Lifetime Television film Taken from Me: The Tiffany Rubin Story, which brought her a nomination for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie. [47] She also sang "In My Daughter's Eyes" on the 2006 charity album Unexpected Dreams – Songs From the Stars. It is the sole responsiblity of the Alpha Chapter that hosts and maintans it. The Upcoming ‘Hidden Figures’ Movie Is Based On Three Members Of Alpha Kappa Alpha 128.2K SharesShare128.2KTweet1There has been a lot of buzz around the upcoming “Hidden Figures” movie starring Taraji P. Henson, … Henson said she hopes to tackle a number of sensitive topics while cultivating young, fresh voices. are thrilled to present a private viewing of the film HIDDEN FIGURES, the incredible untold story of Katherine Johnson (Taraji P Henson), Dorothy Vaughn (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae’). The series is part of Henson's two-year first-look deal with 20th Century Fox Television through her production company, TPH Entertainment. Johnson was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha. HOME. She enrolled at West Virginia State College where she took every math course that the school offered. Alpha Kappa Alpha Hidden Figures Janelle Monae John Glenn Katherine Johnson NASA space race Taraji P. Henson Technology Black Girls Code Makes Cameo on Fox’s ‘Empire’ ", "Taraji P. Henson to Star in 'What Men Want' for Paramount Players", "Paramount Players Plots 'What Men Want'; 'Empire's Taraji P. Henson To Star", "Empire's Taraji P. Henson And Danny Strong Re-Team On Robin Bissell-Helmed 'The Best Of Enemies, "Taraji P. Henson to Star in and Produce Film on Emmett Till", "Taraji P. Henson Nabs Female Lead in Fox's Lee Daniels Hip-Hop Drama 'Empire, "Lee Daniels' 'Empire' picked up by Fox, will 'likely' film in Chicago", "Cookie Monster: How Cookie Lyon Became the Most Compelling Character on TV", "Just Give Taraji P. Henson the Emmy Already", "Taraji P. Henson to Host Second Annual Fox Holiday Special", "Taraji P. Henson To Develop 'Empire' Spin-Off At FOX", "Unexpected Dreams: Songs from the Stars", "Tyrese "Stay" (official music video) feat. In 1994, Henson gave birth to her son Marcell. She started The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation. It was based on true events in the life of a New York woman whose son, Kobe, was abducted by his biological father to South Korea. Brewer is a Spelman College graduate and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She will officially start her new role in October. She took on a teaching job at a black public school in Marion, Virginia. ", This page was last edited on 31 December 2020, at 20:49. [56] Forty minutes after the video was made public,[56] Henson said in an Instagram message, "I would like to publicly apologize to the officer and the Glendale Police Department. [1], Henson has also been a cast member on several television shows, including Lifetime's The Division and ABC's Boston Legal for one season. Taraji Penda Henson (/ t ə ˈ r ɑː dʒ i / tə-RAH-jee; born September 11, 1970) is an American actress.She studied acting at Howard University and began her Hollywood career in guest roles on several television shows before making her breakthrough in Baby Boy (2001). Because the South was still segregated at the time, she was placed in a segregated section and was responsible for doing the mathematical computations for the engineers conducting aeronautical experiments. [9][11] To pay for college, she worked mornings as a secretary at The Pentagon and evenings as a singing-dancing waitress on a dinner-cruise ship, the Spirit of Washington. [65], Henson got engaged to former NFL player Kelvin Hayden on May 13, 2018,[66] but she disclosed the end of her engagement during the October 19, 2020 episode of The Breakfast Club. The Upsilon Alpha Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Sorority Inc. and Basic Enhancements Inc. will honor the legacy of ... Janelle Monae, Taraji P. Henson and Octavia Spencer (Special Photo) Facebook; [37][38] The role brought Henson widespread recognition and critical acclaim. Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. - Service to All Mankind Since 1908. But did you know that these women were and are members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.? PROGRAMS. Mary retired from the NASA Langley Research Center in 1985 as an Aeronautical Engineer after 34 years. Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.® is not responsible for the design or content of this website. The Delta Beta chapter was established at Syracuse University in 1951 and reintroduced in 2010. Alpha Kappa Alpha first honored Katherine G. Johnson, portrayed by Taraji P. Henson, at the sorority’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference. In January 2018, she starred in Sony Screen Gems's thriller-drama film Proud Mary, as a hit woman whose life is turned around when she meets a young boy who awakens the maternal instinct she never knew she had. [21], In 2011 Henson starred as Tiffany Rubin in the Lifetime Movie Network film Taken from Me: The Tiffany Rubin Story. [39][40][41] In July 2015, she was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, and submitted the show's pilot for Emmy voting. [citation needed] [3] From 2011 to 2013, she co-starred as Detective Jocelyn Carter in the CBS drama Person of Interest, for which she won an NAACP Image Award. [4] Also that year, she was praised for her starring role as Katherine Johnson in the critically acclaimed drama film Hidden Figures, for which she won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. In 2005 she starred in the rapper Common's music video "Testify" as the wife of a soon-to-be-convicted murderer,[49] and appeared in Tyrese Gibson's music video "Stay" as his love interest. She starred in the ensemble films Think Like a Man (2012) and its 2014 sequel. [5], Henson was born September 11, 1970 in Southeast Washington, D.C., the daughter of Bernice (née Gordon), a corporate manager at Woodward & Lothrop, and Boris Lawrence Henson, a janitor and metal fabricator. [16], Henson received her SAG membership card in the early 1990s for doing three roles as a background performer (hola amigos). "[16] The song won an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2006, giving Three 6 Mafia the distinction of becoming the first African-American hip hop act to win in that category. Following that recognition, AKA honored Johnson with the Septima Poinsette Award at their national convention's public luncheon held in Atlanta, GA. [50], On March 16, 2015, she was a guest co-host on Live! Her first prominent role was in the 2001 comedy-drama film Baby Boy, where she portrayed Yvette, alongside singer Tyrese Gibson. At one point she studied under W.W. Schiefflin Claytor, the third African American to receive a PhD in math and they added extra math courses to the department just so that Johnson could take more. It was decided that the school would be named after Civil war hero General Oliver O. Howard, a white man, who was serving as the Commissioner of the Freedman’s Bureau. In 2016, Henson starred in the film Hidden Figures, a major box-office success nominated for numerous awards, including three Oscars (Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actress for Octavia Spencer) and two Golden Globes (Best Supporting Actress for Spencer and Best Original Score). [57][58], In 2014, Henson said that her son had been racially profiled by police and that his car had been illegally searched during a traffic stop in Glendale, California. Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie, Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie, Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama, Unexpected Dreams – Songs From the Stars, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Book of Love: The Definitive Reason Why Men Are Dogs, List of awards and nominations received by Taraji P. Henson, "SAG Awards 2017: See the Complete Winners List", "Boris Lawrence Henson RIP...I no u got heaven in stitches cause u had the best sense of humor even in your last moments you kept us laughin", "Taraji P. Henson: 'I'll never forget this'", "Drama Queen: Taraji Henson Moved to Hollywood And Smacked It Right Upside the Head", "'Empire' star Taraji P. Henson on the pros and cons of being Cookie", "Taraji Shares All, Even the Surprising Color of Her Panties", "Taraji P. Henson Talks Cookie Taking Over Her Life, Kerry Washington, Baby Boy Sequel, Season 2 Of Empire + More", "Taraji P. Henson: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button Interview", "Taraji P. Henson Interview: The Karate Kid, Beijing Culture and Working for Will Smith", "Taken from Me: The Tiffany Rubin Story: TV review [Lifetime]", "Production starts on 'Think Like a Man Too, "Hidden Figures Taraji P. Henson Set For Screen Gems Proud Mary", "Tyler Perry's Taraji P. Henson Movie Gets Easter Release", "Surprise! [42] At the 46th NAACP Image Awards she was named the 2015 Entertainer of the Year for her roles in Empire and No Good Deed. Though it did not receive a majority of positive reviews, the film was a commercial success. A mother's job is not easy, and neither is a police officer's. [30] In April 2019, she will star in the historical drama The Best of Enemies, portraying civil rights activist Ann Atwater. In this ruling, states could satisfy this requirement by allowing blacks and whites to attend the same school or creating a second school for blacks. Hampton Alum Marie R. Sylla-Dixon Appointed As Raytheon Technologies Chief Diversity... Shaw University Receives $525,000 Grant From Gilead Sciences. She passed away at 98-years old on November 10th, 2008.”. In 1938 she enrolled at West Virginia University where she became the one of three black students, and the only female, to integrate the graduate school after the US Supreme Court ruled that each state which provided a school for white students had to provide in-state education to blacks as well. 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