Star Jones & Marquis Who’s Who Releases Inaugural African American Catalysts For Change List

UNIONDALE, N.Y.Feb. 2, 2021 Marquis Who’s Who (MWW), the world’s leading biographical publisher for the last 120 years, presents their inaugural African American Catalysts for Change list just in time to kick off Black History Month. Headed by MWW CEO Erica Lee, the list was curated by American lawyer, award winning media personality, and women’s and diversity advocate Star Jones, who as Executive Editor showcases a total of 50 honorees, highlighting activists, entertainers, politicians, government officials, sports stars and more. 

MWW was established in 1898, documenting the history and lives of the world’s most prominent and renowned people in a print format. Now, the MWW set of directories has expanded to include accomplishments of some of the most notable figures from around the globe. Their compilations include Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who of American Women, Who’s Who of Emerging Leaders, and Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, among others. MWW expanded its print series to include an online database, which is widely used for research by numerous top academic institutions as well as public and corporate libraries throughout the world.

“We wanted to create a list that showcased the true black thought leaders that have become those that will affect change as we move into an uneasy yet hopeful new year,” said CEO Erica Lee. “This compilation is Who’s Who’s way of paying homage to the most influential figures over the last few years that have gone above and beyond the call of duty.”

“I am humbled to join the men and women who have been identified as African American Catalysts for Change. I see this list as phenomenal examples of the village of excellence African American leaders across all industries bring to the table of influence through their passion, vision, drive, determination and action. These leaders not only ‘talk the talk,’ they ‘walk the walk’ in leading the way for the change that is sorely needed,” said Executive Editor and listee Star Jones.

Selected honorees for MWW African American Catalysts for Change list include the following:

  • Amanda Gorman: The youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history. The National Youth Poet Laureate performed “The Hill We Climb” and quickly gained international acclaim.
  • Angel OnuohaCo-Founder and CEO of BLK Capital Management, a 100% black-owned and 100% student-run hedge fund. Onuoha’s goal was to launch a hedge fund that exposed young African American adults to the field of active investment management, giving them a real-time education while they dive head-first into managing an invested pool of money.
  • Bubba Wallace: Professional stock car racing driver and the only Black driver in NASCAR’s top-tier. He spoke out against the sport’s use of the Confederate flag and two days after asking NASCAR’s president to ban the flag, an announcement was made the symbol was no longer welcome at any of the organization’s racing events.
  • Dawn Wallace: She became famous as the nurse whistleblower who alleged medical neglect and questionable hysterectomies at an immigration detention center in Georgia in September 2020. This was brought to the worldwide stage, with American legislators and civilians demanding an investigation into the claims. Her testimony reignited the criticism and public protests surrounding ICE detention centers.
  • Eugene Goodman: Capitol Police officer, who risked his own safety to divert a mob from the Senate chamber during the insurrection at the United States Capitol on Jan. 6th and became a national hero overnight. As a result of his selflessness, the Army veteran is now serving as the acting Deputy Sergeant at Arms of the United States Senate as of January 20, 2021.
  • George Floyd: His death at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department sparked a powder keg of resentment and injustice that had long been building in the United States, leading to weeks of nationwide protests. Floyd became the posthumous symbol of the BLM movement.
  • Kristen Clarke: President and Executive Director of the National Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. She was named the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Division under President Joe Biden.
  • Megan Thee Stallion: An American rapper, singer and songwriter, who garnered mass attention from her Instagram videos of her freestyling. Her debut studio album Good News peaked in the top 10 of the Billboard 200.
  • Misty Danielle Copeland: Ballet dancer for American Ballet Theatre, one of the three leading classical ballet companies in the United States. Copeland became the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in ABT’s 75-year history.
  • Raphael Gamaliel Warnock: Georgia’s first Black U.S. senator, his triumph in the 2021 special election created shock waves around the country and helped deliver Senate control to the Democratic party for the first time since 2015.
  • Shonda Rhimes: Television producer, screenwriter, and author. She is best known as the showrunner, creator, head writer, and executive producer of Grey’s Anatomy; Rhimes is worth $140 million, which accounts for her nine-figure Netflix deal when she moved from ABC. Her most recent show Bridgerton has made Netflix history with 82 million viewers.
  • Tarana BurkeFounder of the MeToo Movement, an organization that assists survivors of sexual assault. Hashtag #MeToo has been utilized by millions of women worldwide to share abuse stories and has helped to bring down several powerful men in the public eye.
The complete list of honorees is listed below in alphabetical order:
  • Abby Phillip
  • Alicia Garza
  • Amanda Gorman
  • Angel Onuoha
  • Ben Crump
  • Bubba Wallace
  • Byron Allen
  • Christian Cooper
  • Colin Kaepernick
  • Cori Bush
  • Dawn Wooten
  • Derrick Ingram
  • Dr. Bernice King
  • Dr. Patrice Harris
  • Eugene Goodman
  • Gayle King
  • George Floyd
  • Ibram X Kendi
  • Jaime Harrison
  • Joe Madison
  • Joy Reid
  • Kamala Harris
  • Karine Jean-Pierre
  • Kimberly Bryant
  • Kizzmekia Corbett
  • Kristen Clarke
  • LeBron James
  • Lloyd James Austin III
  • Megan Thee Stallion
  • Melanie Campbell
  • Michael Eric Dyson
  • Michelle Obama
  • Misty Danielle Copeland
  • Naia Butler-Craig
  • Nikole Hannah-Jones
  • Opal Tometi
  • Patrisse Cullors
  • Raphael Gaemaliel Warnock
  • Ryan Coogler
  • Serena Williams
  • Shonda Rhimes
  • Stacey Abrams
  • Star Jones
  • Susan L. Taylor
  • Symone Sanders
  • Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • Tamika Mallory
  • Tarana Burke
  • Tyler Perry
  • Van Jones
About Marquis Who’s Who®
Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the first edition of Who’s Who in America®, Marquis Who’s Who® has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion, and entertainment. Today, Who’s Who in America® remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians, and executive search firms around the world. Marquis® publications may be visited via the official Marquis Who’s Who® website at

SOURCE Marquis Who’s Who

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