11 'Firsts' in 2015 That Prove the Times They Are A Changin'

RealClear Staff

            

Some pretty amazing things happened in 2015, many of which did not make the top headlines. Yet they could be the harbingers of things to come.

1. Cuba Drops Off U.S. List of State Sponsors of Terrorism

May 30, 2015 began a new era in U.S.-Cuba relations.

2. Ireland Is 1st Country to Legalize Gay Marriage By Popular Vote

May 22, 2015.

3. American Pharoah Is 1st Horse to Win Triple Crown and Breeders' Cup

And may have saved the dying sport of horse racing in the process.

4. 1st Female Soldiers Graduate from Army Rangers School

 U.S. Army First Lt. Shaye Haver and Capt. Kristen Griest graduated on August 21, 2015.

5. Viola Davis Becomes the 1st Black Woman to Win Best Actress in a Drama

The "How to Get Away With Murder" star won on September 20, 2015.

6. Google Opens 1st Brick and Mortar Store in London

On March 11, 2015, the tech giant joined Apple and Microsoft. What took so long?

7. Hawaii is 1st State to Raise Smoking age to 21

The decision handed down June 21, 2015, could have repercussions across the country, and help curb smoking in younger people.

8. 1st Woman NFL coach and 1st Woman NFL Referee

In July, the Arizona Cardinals named Jen Welter (left) an assistant coach throughout training camp and preseason, and the NFL named Sarah Thomas (right) as the first full-time female official in league history.

9. 1st Diplomatic Metting Between China and Taiwan Since 1949 Civil War

It lasted only an hour, on November 7, 2015, but it's a good start for Chinese President Xi Jinping (left) and Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou.

10. Tiffany's Unveils 1st Ad Campaign Featuring Same-Sex Couple

That was January 9, 2015.

11. 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' is 1st Movie to Make a Half Billion on its 1st Weekend

That's $529 million around the world on the weekend of Dec. 17-20, 2015. On to 2016!

LEADERBOARD
            

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