Cicely Louise Tyson (born December 18, 1924) is an American actress. She was nominated for the Academy and Golden Globe Awards for Best Actress for her performance as Rebecca Morgan in Sounder (1972). For this role she also won the NSFC Best Actress and NBR Best Actress Awards. She starred in The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (1974), for which she won two Emmy Awards and was nominated for a BAFTA Award. During her career she has been nominated for twelve Primetime Emmy Awards, winning three.
In 2011, she appeared in the film The Help, for which she received awards for her ensemble work as Constantine from the BFCA and SAG Awards and she has an additional four SAG Award nominations. She starred on Broadway in The Trip to Bountiful as Carrie Watts, for which she won the Tony Award, Outer Critics Award, and Drama Desk Award for Best Actress in a Play. She previously received a Drama Desk Award in 1962 for her Off-Broadway performance in Moon on a Rainbow Shawl.
On November 16, 2016, it was announced that Tyson would be one of 21 new recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor.