Before Beats By Dre and Nike were clamoring for her endorsement, or she was posing for paparazzi photos with Kim Kardashian, millions of black women knew and loved 'Rena, ReRe or "my girl," their terms of endearment for Serena Williams.
Serena, in all her #BlackGirlMagic glory, was first worshipped by the legions of girls and women who saw themselves in the determined, hardworking and charming phenom from Compton, California. It's these women who are among those cheering the loudest for Serena, because for them, she has already won.
They scream for her on and off the court because her magazine covers, Instagram posts and images of her with braids, beads, wearing catsuits or bikinis, are a different kind of victory for the woman many of them consider the epitome of beauty and excellence. For them, looking at Serena Williams is like looking into a mirror that affirms their own bodies and skin color.
As she chases history, attempting to score the first calendar Grand Slam in nearly three decades, there's a special section of women across the country forming their own players box for Serena. In their own words, a few notable black women share why they'll always be her biggest fans.