W.E.B. Du Bois
Known as arguably one of the most intelligent individuals to ever live, W.E.B. Du Bois was instrumental in bringing along the process of human rights for African-American's. In a time when the despotic and abundant prejudice and bigotry towards African-Americans was not only tolerated, it was with reason and law.
Du Bois was the first African-American to earn a PH.D from Harvard University. He was also the founding member of what we know today to be the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People).