Today's Articles

People, Locations, Episodes

Wed, 08.28.1929

Roxie Roker, Actress born

Roxie Roker

Roxie Roker was born on this date in 1929. She was a Black actress and children’s advocate.

Roxie Roker was born in Miami to Albert Roker, who had emigrated from the Bahamas, and Bessie Roker.   She attended Howard University and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1952. While at Howard, she was an active member of the Howard Players and was featured in several productions. She was also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

After graduation, Roker moved to New York City and began working in an office while appearing in several off-Broadway plays. She became a full-time actress after joining the Negro Ensemble Company (NEC). At NEC, Roker appeared in the plays Ododo and Rosalee Pritchard. In 1974, she won an Obie Award and was nominated for a Tony for her performance as Mattie Williams in The River Niger.

She married a white-Russian Jewish TV producer, Syl Kravitz.  The couple had one child, Lenny Kravitz, in 1964. In 1975, Roker was cast in the TV show, The Jeffersons. Her character, Helen Willis, played the wife of the first interracial couple on prime-time TV. After the Jeffersons ended in 1985, she returned to the stage, touring with Mary Martin and Carol Channing in Legends.

Her community work, including her service as a board member of the Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect, earned her two citations from the Los Angeles City Council.  Roxie Roker died on December 2, 1995, from breast cancer.

To become an Actor or Actress

New Poem Each Day

Poetry Corner

And where do your parents summer? she asked him. The front porch he replied... SUNDAY BRUNCH by Ruben Jackson.
Read More