The Tony Awards set the bar for diversity on Sunday evening as several actors and actresses of color were recognized for their work; a major difference from the #OscarsSoWhite controversy that ensued earlier this year. For the first time in the ceremony’s history, four musical acting awards were nabbed by Black actors. Broadway hit show Hamilton took home awards for the best lead actor, which was won by Leslie Odom, Jr., best featured actor, which was given to Daveed Diggs, and best featured actress, which was awarded to Renee Elise Goldsberry. Cynthia Erivo won an award for her role in The Color Purple. The nominees for different categories were diverse as well. Both Christopher Jackson from Hamilton and Brandon Victor Dixon from Shuffle Along were in the running for best featured actor. Diggs said diverse productions like Hamilton serve as inspiration for young children of color who want to get involved in theater. “There is so much diversity on Broadway right now,” he said. “It’s nice to have it feeling a little more mainstream and a lot more inclusive.” Read more.
Rachel Dolezal Spotted Filming a Documentary at Howard University
Rachel Dolezal, the former president of the NAACP Spokane chapter who lied about her racial identity, is reportedly filming a documentary at Howard University. Dolezal was seen on campus of the HBCU; several individuals who spotted her took to social media to share the news. According to Maya Cade, the executive editor of A Tribe Called News, the former Howard University graduate was there to shoot a documentary about “race and identity in America.” Dolezal has a rocky relationship with her alma mater. She sued the institution claiming that she wasn’t given scholarship money and a teaching assistant position while attending the school for her MFA because she was White. There are no details about what the name of the documentary will be or when it will be released. Read more.
Actor Michael Jace Sentenced to 40 Years Behind Bars
Michael Andrew Jace, best known for his role as a cop on FX’s The Shield, will face up to 40 years behind bars for murdering his wife. In May, Jace was found guilty of shooting and killing his wife April at their Los Angeles residence in front of his two children. Jace allegedly shot her because she wanted a divorce and he thought she was involved with someone else. She was wounded in the back and in her legs. Following the shooting, Jace called 911. Jace reportedly had ongoing issues with domestic violence. Read more.
Rent-A-Car of Baltimore Slapped With Discrimination Lawsuit
Rent-A-Car of Baltimore, LLC, has been slapped with a racial discrimination lawsuit by the Department of Labor for prejudice against Blacks seeking entry-level positions at the enterprise. The DOL’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs conducted a probe to examine the Rent-A-Car’s hiring practices and discovered that not only were they biased, they weren’t keeping employment records. They investigation also revealed that Black applicants were more likely to be dismissed at the initial screening stage, while White applicants made it further in the interview process. “All workers deserve a fair shot at equal employment opportunities and advancement,” said OFCCP Director Patricia A. Shiu in a statement. “Our action against Enterprise highlights our commitment to combating discrimination against qualified workers.” Enterprise Holdings Inc., the parent company of Rent-A-Car, disagrees with the report. “We’re disappointed that, after all this time, the Department of Labor has apparently chosen to ignore the evidence and proceed with this action,” said spokeswoman Christine Cavallini. “We work hard to ensure that our workforce mirrors the diversity of the communities we serve. That’s why we are moving immediately to defend against the Department’s decision.” Read more.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty