2. Oprah Gail Winfrey
You can’t talk powerful black women without referring to Oprah Winfrey. The 59-year-old billionaire/talk show host/philanthropist (the list goes on and on) worked her way out of poverty to top Forbes’ roundup of the wealthiest black Americans. Though her success is incredible by any standard, we’re just as floored by her philanthropic pursuits. As of October 2012, Winfrey has donated over $400 million to educational causes, including a leadership academy for South African girls and over 400 Morehouse College scholarships.