The largest cities, including New York, Chicago and Los Angeles have had black mayors. Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice were two African Americans who became Secretary of State, and in 2009 Barack Obama became the first African American President of the United States.
Barack Obama - 44th President of the United States
In the film industry Halle Berry and Denzel Washington are among the most famous stars. Bill Cosby was the first African American with his own comedy show and Oprah Winfrey is the most famous and best-earning talk master on American TV.
Michael Jordan - One of America's greatest African American athletes
Steve Lipofsky at basketballphoto.com [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)]
Despite these advances, about 25% of African Americans live in poverty. Discrimination still exists in many areas and the standard of living lags behind that of the white population. Compared to other groups, average income is much lower and the rate of unemployment higher. Nevertheless, African Americans have made big gains since slavery ended 150 years ago.