National Archives News

In Memoriam: Nichelle Nichols (1932-2022)

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TV Trailblazer, Space Exploration Advocate

Actor Nichelle Nichols, who rose to prominence portraying Lieutenant Nyota Uhura on television's Star Trek: The Original Series from 1966 to 1991, and as a NASA spokesperson encouraged diversity in the aeronautics field, died on July 30, 2022. She is seen here with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office on Feb. 29, 2012. As archives specialist Netisha Currie wrote in a 2016 blog post, on and off the screen, Nichols "worked for decades in an effort to recruit women and people of color in order to ensure that Lieutenant Uhura would not be the only black woman in space." View images of Nichols' work with NASA in the post.