Lena Waithe has made Emmy history as the first African-American woman to win for comedy writing.
Waithe won for co-writing the “Thanksgiving” episode of “Master of None” with series co-creator and star, Aziz Ansari. Waithe has also had a recurring role on the Netflix comedy.
The widely acclaimed episode was based on her experience of coming out as a lesbian.
Waithe called out the importance of diversity in entertainment and the culture at large in accepting the award. She was clearly overcome with emotion.
“The things that make us different — those are our superpowers,” she said. She made special mention of her “LGBTQIA family” and urged viewers who feel outside of the mainstream to don a superhero cape every day “and go out there and conquer the world. It would not be as beautiful as it is if we weren’t in it.”
Waithe herself is in the midst of a big career move. She’s about to launch an autobiographical Showtime series, “The Chi,” about her coming of age years in Chicago. She’s also developing other TV projects.
Waithe told reporters backstage that she hopes her career trajectory inspires other people to strive for careers in entertainment.
“It says that it is possible,” she said. “There’s so many other funny women of color. I hope they will now have an opportunity because this door has been opened.”