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Black Fact of the Week: Ophelia Devore Opened One of the First Black Modeling Agencies in 1946

ophelia devore

Established in New York City during a time when Black women were generally excluded from the fashion industry and advertised as inferiors, Ophelia Devore-Mitchell’s barrier-bashing Grace Del Marco broke down doors for African-American women looking to enter the entertainment industry. Through her agency, Miss DeVore instilled confidence and pride into her models and provided them with opportunities to make money on the mainstream market.

Founded in 1946, Grace Del Marco is responsible for launching the careers of superstars like Diahann Carroll, Cicely Tyson, Gail Fisher, Helen Williams, and even Richard Roundtree (Shaft!) Clearly, this culture-shifting movement not only shook up the fashion industry, but transcended beyond runways and pretty photo shoots, giving us unadulterated gifts of talent.

A big hand for Miss DeVore and Grace Del Marco one time! #MaySheRIP

 

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