Viola Davis Wins Emmy for ‘How to Get Away With Murder’

Viola Davis Wins Emmy for Outstanding Lead ActressViola Davis made history on Sunday night when she won an Emmy for her leading role in ABC’s “How to Get Away With Murder.”

The actress is the first black woman ever to win the award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama series.

Davis beat out nominees Taraji P. Henson in “Empire,” Claire Danes in “Homeland,” Robin Wright in “House of Cards,” Elisabeth Moss in “Mad Men,” and Tatiana Mislay in “Orphan Black.”

“In my dreams and visions, I seemed to see a line, and on the other side of that line were green fields, and lovely flowers, and beautiful white ladies, who stretched out their arms to me over the line, but I couldn’t reach them no-how,” Davis said, quoting Harriet Tubman in her acceptance speech. “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.”

Though Davis is the first black actress to win the award, former black nominees have included Alfre Woodard, Debbie Allen, Cicely Tyson, Regina Taylor, and Kerry Washington.

Davis’ television credits include “Law & Order: SVU,” “United States of Tara,” and “City of Angels.” Her film credits include Doubt, The Help, and Get on Up.

Watch Davis accept her award below:

(Photo: Phil McCarten/AP)