Shelia Crump Johnson graduated from the University of Illinois in 1970 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She was the first female African American cheerleader at the University of Illinois. In 1979, Shelia co-founded the ground breaking Black Entertainment Television (BET) network. She is also the Vice Chairman of Monumental Sports and Entertainment and the only African American woman to hold a stake in three professional sports teams: the NBA Wizards, the WNBA Mystics, and the NHL Capitals. She is a founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts, and has served as Executive Producer on four documentary films. Other significant achievements include being appointed to the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities by former President Obama.
Women featured in our weekly series are part of the 150 for 150 website Celebrating the Accomplishments of Women at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The website was created by the Gender Equity Council and the University Library to highlight women who have made significant achievements during their time at the University either as students, staff, faculty, or alumni.