This year, we’re celebrating an extended Black History Month by highlighting a variety of rising artists who are creating history before our very eyes. Laverne Cox is best known as Sophia Burset on Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black, but since the show premiered in 2013, the actress has become so much more, to so many people who don’t have the opportunity to speak out about human rights on an international platform.
As the first transgender person to be nominated in an acting category at the Primetime Emmys, Cox had become a groundbreaking artist in her first major role. Yet Cox’s real powers lie outside of Netflix accounts: As a tireless advocate of LGBT rights, trans awareness, anti-violence and diversity in the arts, Cox is shifting not only her industry, but the world.
She’s graced magazine covers, won countless awards, was given a wax figure replica at Madame Tussauds and will command the upcoming remake of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Laverne Cox is a superstar, and her real work has only begun.