Diahann Carroll, born July 17, 1935, in New York, York. Diahann Carroll was an American actress, singer, model, and activist. She rose to prominence in some of the earliest major studio films to feature black casts, including Carmen Jones and Porgy and Bess. Carroll thus became the first African American female to star in a non-stereotypical role in her own primetime network series. (Several actresses portrayed a maid on ABC's Beulah in the early 1950s.) In addition to being a sitcom pioneer, she sang on television, in nightclubs, on recordings and on Broadway, where she won a Tony Award. Carroll died at her home in Los Angeles after a long bout with cancer, her daughter, producer-journalist Suzanne Kay, told The Hollywood Reporter.