Viola Davis took home the Emmy award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Sunday night, making her the first Black woman to do so in the Television Academy’s 67 years.

While Davis faced stiff competition from Empire star Taraji P. Henson, it was all love when the winner was announced.

Once Davis took the stage she gave an acceptance speech that called out Hollywood’s lack of diversity and affirmed her fellow Black actresses.

“In my mind, I see a line. And over that line I see green fields, and lovely flowers, and beautiful white women, with their arms stretched out to me over that line, but I can’t seem to get there no-how. I can’t seem to get over that line. That was Harriet Tubman in the 1800s,” Davis said. “Let me tell you something, the only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there.”

Davis went on to shout out Henson, Kerry Washington, Shonda Rhimes, Gabrielle Union, Halle Berry, Meagan Good, and Nicole Beharie for “taking us over that line.”

The How to Get Away With Murder star’s speech was a hit on Twitter, and with her fellow Black actresses.

Viola Davis wasn’t the only Black woman to win big at this year’s Emmys. Veteran actress Regina King took home the award for Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie for her role in American Crime, and Uzo Aduba won for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama for Orange is the New Black. 

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  • *NmySkynn70*

    Even though this isn’t the Oscars, i’m still GLAD someone of COLOR FINALLY won for a role in which they truly deserved to win. I get so mad when i think of years past when so many women of color (Diana Ross, Angela Bassett, Diahann Carroll, Cicely Tyson, Oprah Winfrey, et al.) have been consistently denied the Oscar for roles in which they clearly should have won.

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  • This speech stirred my spirit something fierce! Blessings to Ms. Davis, Ms. King and Ms. Adoba for representing us so beautifully last night!!!

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    She gave an excellent, magnificent speech. We already know that Viola Davis has amazing talent and strength before she won her Emmy. She just expressed the views of so many black women believe in. Regardless of the slander, the stereotypes, and the other forms of disrespect black women have experienced unjustly, nothing will break a black woman at all. We see the gifts of acting, teaching, and other forms of leadership expressed by so many Sisters like Viola Davis and others. A lot of courageous women back in the day sacrificed day in and day out in order for black people to exist today during this generation. It was very touching for Viola to recognize her peers and to say that opportunities can give people a way where they can shine their light all over the world. We know that there is more to go. Yet, during that night, Viola Davis has shined her light and made it known that her beauty, talent, and radiance are being expressed on her terms. Uzo Aduba is very talented as well. Legends like Regina King (who has helped so many people in real life) inspire women and they are living their lives in ways that can cause even more women to fulfill their own aspirations. Black women coming together in order for them to support each other is always a blessing.