Sheryl Lee Ralph is finally receiving the accolades she deserves!
After 30+ years in the business, the industry vet won an EMMY for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her role as Barbara Howard in “Abbott Elementary.”
The 65-year-old became just the second Black woman to score an EMMY in the category after Jackée Harry won in 1987 for “227” in 1987. It’s the first time in 35 years a Black woman won the award in the category.
Of course Ralph was over come with emotion. After she made it onstage, Sheryl broke out into Diane Reeves’ 1993 song “Endangered Species.”
”I am an endangered species, but I sing no victim song,” she sang. “I am a woman, I am an artist, and I know where my voice belongs.”
She also gave a grand acceptance speech including words of encouragement for anyone who ever thought of giving up.
“To anyone who has ever ever had a dream and thought your dream wasn’t wouldn’t couldn’t come true I am here to tell you that this is what believing looks like,” Ralph said. “This is what striving looks like, and don’t you ever, ever give up on you.”
Check it out below.
She also thanked her “Abbott Elementary” co-stars, including creator, writer, producer (and EMMY winner) Quinta Brunson, who was the one to approach her about the role, as well as her husband and children for being in her “corner.”
Jackée Harry also took to social media to congratulate Sheryl on her “full circle” EMMY win.
The network originally wanted @thesherylralph to play Sandra on 227, but I got the part and won an Emmy for it.
Now, Sheryl joins me as the 2nd black woman in this category and deservedly so! 🎉 I’m so exited for her #Emmys win!
— Jackée Harry (@JackeeHarry) September 13, 2022