She is an activist, an advocate and a reality TV star, but Laverne Cox is probably best known as Sophia Burset on the hit Netflix show Orange is the New Black.
It was a breakout part for Cox, but not just for the actress. The casting represents the first time a black, transgender woman was given a leading role in a mainstream drama. It also saw Cox land on the cover of Time — the first time a transgender person has ever appeared on the face of the magazine.
"It was like a dream come true," Cox told CBC News, "a realization of a lot of years of hard work and struggle."
Cox's work as a transgender activist recently brought her to Toronto for WorldPride.
In the attached video, she sits down with CBC's Wendy Mesley to talk about why telling trans stories is an important tool for advancing human rights.