Caryn Elaine Johnson is not a household name, but Whoopi Goldberg needs no introduction. Known more for her controversial stance on politics on the New York-based morning talk show, “The View” during the recent presidential election, and her comedic roles in major motion pictures, many are surprised to see that Whoopi holds an even more diverse repertoire than a few acting roles.

Goldberg has received two Academy Award nominations, for The Color Purple and Ghost, going home with the award for the latter. The Golden Globes recognized the brilliance of the compelling drama “The Color Purple” which featured an all-star cast including Oprah Winfrey and raised both to a new level giving Whoopi the title Best Performance by an Actress in A Motion Picture for drama.

She is the first African American to have received Academy Award nominations for both Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress. To name a few, in 1986 Whoopi won a Grammy for best Comedy Album for an original Broadway Show Recording. In 2002 she won a Tony Award for Best Musical for Thoroughly Modern Millie. Whoopi represents one of a select few who has achieved the grand slam in Hollywood terms; the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar & Tony awards all four known as the EGOT.

Whoopi Goldberg was honored last year on World AIDS Day with the Elizabeth Taylor Legacy Award for over 30 years of activism in the HIV/AIDS community. Goldberg initially joined the movement after Elizabeth Taylor asked if she’d stand by her side and fight.

Goldberg is one of many that have held steadfast in her positions on controversial topics from religion to politics to film. Recently in a discussion about comments made by Ben Carson about slaves being immigrants who came to America for a better life left Whoopi and the whole panel flabbergasted. While speaking to the Department of Housing and Urban Development the Secretary said, “There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less.”

Whoopi on rant said “Maybe we need to get him [Carson] a history book. Were the slaves really thinking about the American dream? No, they were thinking, ‘What the hell just happened?!'” She is praised for her unapologetic personality and refusing to make any apology for her beliefs.

 

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