Photo Credit: Jenifer Lewis/Instagram

Jenifer Lewis, affectionately known as The Mother of Black Hollywood just got her flowers Friday with her very own star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Black-ish actress has appeared in over 400 television shows, 68 movies, 40 animations and has been on Broadway. With a star next to Katherine Hepburn, she’s joked that she’s going to be sleeping next to her star and driving by it daily to remind people not to step on her good name.

The July 15th date of the star unveiling even had significance because in the 1999 Lifetime mockumentary “Jackie’s Back!” July 15th was Jackie Washington Day in Kinloch, Missouri which was the hometown of both the character and herself in real life. Her friend Debbie Allen made remarks referring to her as “dynamic and so amazing.” She added, “This moment right now is a great moment for all of us to share with Jenifer. That she is joining the ranks and her name leaves an indelible mark for time, generations… so today, as we put her name in this marquee of greatness, we can only think about what all is yet to come.”

Allen said about Lewis, that she was someone she could call “morning, noon and night and she returns the call, as she should, and it is a blessing and it’s a privilege, and God bless the Hollywood Walk of Fame for knowing who should be on this walk.”

When asked why she hadn’t received the honor earlier, Lewis said, “What you don’t know is, I just wasn’t ready because I had not done the real work. The real work was off stage and off camera. She spoke about one of her biggest challenges saying “When I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, somehow I found the strength and the courage to say three of the most powerful words in the English language, I need help.”

Lewis finished her acceptance speech by sharing “These are not dark times. these are awakening times. We have to be brave. We have to be brave now and we have to be loud in that braveness. Mine is sitting at the piano and screaming, with my seven chords that I know… spoken words like “take you knee off my neck,” “Flint aint fixed,” “Get your ass out and vote,” and of course, “I don’t want nobody walking on me in this street.””