JoJo Siwa, Iman Shumpert, and Other Contestants Who Made History on 'Dancing with the Stars'

We've rounded up all the history-making, ground-breaking "firsts" achieved on Dancing with the Stars throughout the show's 30 seasons

Photo: Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty (2)

Add another page to the DWTS history books!

The 2016 NBA champion, Iman Shumpert, recently earned another champion title when he emerged victorious winning season 30 of Dancing with the Stars. The contestant who traded in his basketball for the Mirrorball made history – marking another monumental moment for the show.

It was a significant win for Shumpert, 31, who became the first basketball player to ever win the competition during Monday night's finale. Partnered with Daniella Karagach, the couple dance-battled their way to the top against finalists JoJo Siwa, Amanda Kloots and Cody Rigsby.

Iman Shumpert Daniella Karagach DWTS
(ABC/Eric McCandless)

Throughout the 16 years Dancing with the Stars has been on the air, the show has paired a diverse array of celebrities with dance professionals since its ABC debut on June 1, 2005. Over 30 entertaining seasons filled with stars, scores, and an abundance of tangos – the dance competition series has seen many of "firsts" as well.

Prior to Shumpert's iconic feat, Siwa made history (and headlines) earlier in the season marking the first contestant to be paired with a partner of the same sex. The news was announced a few months after the Nickelodeon star publicly came out as LGBTQ in January on social media.

JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson DWTS
(ABC/Christopher Willard)

"I think it breaks a wall that's never been broken down before," Siwa said during the Television Critics Association summer press tour. "I think it's really special that, not only now do I get to share with the world that you're going to love who you want to love, but also you can dance with who you want to dance with."

Shumpert and Siwa are just two contestants who serve as inspirations on the show, but there's a long list of history-making stars who have gone down in the books before them. Keep scrolling for all the ground-breaking "firsts" achieved on Dancing with the Stars over the years.

Kelly Monaco: First Ever Winner of DWTS


It only makes sense that we kick-off the "firsts" list with the first-ever contestant to win the dance competition. The former Playboy Playmate of the Month and General Hospital star and her partner, Alec Mazo, took home the prized Mirrorball Trophy during the first season of the show in 2005.

Monaco, 29 years old at the time, announced in the winners circle, "All my life I've been the underdog. I know it's such a sap story, but I have."

When she returned for Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars in season 15, she told PEOPLE, "If I can do it, anyone can do it," regarding what she had learned from her season one win. "I just don't know if you can do it twice. It's like being struck by lightning twice," she added.

Emmitt Smith: First Football Player to Win DWTS

Adam Larkey/ABC/AP

The retired professional football legend, who primarily played for the Dallas Cowboys, snagged the the win alongside his partner Cheryl Burke during season 3 of the show in 2006. The athlete became the first of many football players to secure the Mirrorball Trophy.

"I am so proud of this trophy and I am proud to share it with Cheryl," Smith told PEOPLE while gold-colored confetti fell from above. "We worked our tails off."

Amy Purdy: First Double Amputee Contestant on DWTS

Adam Taylor/Disney General Entertainment Content via Getty

The three-time Paralympic medalist inspired many when she competed on season 18 of the show, making her the first double-leg amputee on DWTS (and the only double-leg amputee competing in snowboarding at the world-class level).

The snowboarder, 34 at the time of competition, lost both legs below the knee at 19 following a life-threatening bout of bacterial meningitis – but that didn't slow her down! Following her performance, judge Len Goodman said, "You got a bronze medal in the Olympics, you got a gold medal in the cha-cha-cha."

"Once I lost my legs and I lost my ankle movement, I had to figure out different ways to [snowboard]. I found that it's more about using the rest of my body. And with dancing it's kind of similar," she told PEOPLE after her DWTS debut. "We're figuring out what can we do to accomplish that same movement. It's just being creative with the situation."

Apollo Anton Ohno: First Olympian to Win DWTS


The eight-time Winter Olympic medalist (two-time medalist at the time) was the first Olympian to win the dance competition during season 4 in 2007. The speed skater was partnered with Julianne Hough and was celebrating his 25th birthday the night of victory!

"I feel amazing," the speed skater said after learning he'd won the competition, beating out singer Joey Fatone and boxer Laila Ali. "From day one, I feel like everyone here has been champions."

Amber Riley: First Black Woman to Win DWTS

ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" - Season 17 - Week 11
Adam Taylor/ABC/Getty

The former Glee star beat out Corbin Bleu and Karina Smirnoff and Jack Osbourne and Cheryl Burke to make history: Riley became the first Black woman to win DWTS in 2013. The iconic victory was achieved during the show's 17th season, and marked partner Derek Hough's fifth MirrorBall.

"I did this competition because, I didn't know if I [could] do it and anything that scares me I wanna do, so I [want to] let women of all sizes out there know you can do whatever you put your mind to," Riley said after her win. "It doesn't matter what size you are, what color you are, you can do whatever, whatever, whatever, whatever you put your mind to!"

Nyle DiMarco: First Deaf Contestant to Win DWTS

ABC's "Dancing With the Stars": Season 22 - Finale
Adam Taylor/ABC/Getty

DiMarco went from America's Next Top Model winner to DWTS winner during season 22 alongside partner Peta Murgatroyd. He became the first deaf contestant to win the competition, whose goal was to inspire others since the beginning. "Our dance is for millions of deaf people," he said during rehearsals. "This dance has to make them proud."

Although he was the first deaf contestant to take home the trophy, he was the second deaf contestant to compete on the show, following Marlee Matlin in season 6. Matlin showed support for DiMarco's win and tweeted, "Wow @DancingABC!!" Matlin tweeted, with a heart emoji. "The moment when @NyleDiMarco won. He proves Deaf people can do ANYTHING, include DANCE! Nyle!"

Adam Rippon: First Openly Gay Contestant to Win DWTS

Craig Sjodin/ABC

The Olympic figure skater made history as the first openly gay Olympian to represent the United States, and continued to make history when he became the first openly gay DWTS winner in the show's 26 seasons. Rippon was partners with Jenna Johnson for his 2018 win during the Dancing with the Stars: Athletes season.

"The Mirrorball has now taken on a new meaning, someone like me is accepted and I feel loved," the Rippon said during the finale.

Danelle Umstead: First Blind Contestant on DWTS

Eric McCandless/ABC

A long-time fan of the show, the American alpine skier and Paralympian fulfilled her DWTS dream, and made history, when she competed during season 27 with partner Artem Chigvintsev. Umstead, who has no central or peripheral vision, was also diagnosed with multiple sclerosis eight years before her dancing debut – and had always hoped to be the show's first-ever blind contestant.

"In 2007, the first time I watched this show, I was holding my baby son in my arms and I was four inches away from the television screen," she recalled. "I said I wanted to be the first blind contestant on Dancing with the Stars — I threw it out to the universe, and life did a full circle and came back and gave me my dream."

J.R. Martinez: First U.S. Army Soldier to Win DWTS


The Iraq war veteran and actor took home the Mirrorball Trophy on season 13 of Dancing with the Stars in 2011. Martinez (who was partnered with pro Karina Smirnoff) made history as the first U.S. army soldier to not only compete on the show, but win.

After claiming victory over Rob Kardashian and Cheryl Burke, he said, "First and foremost, I want to thank everyone who voted for us for 10 weeks... Thank you, America, for believing in us." He told PEOPLE, "I want to sleep with this thing... I want to kiss it. I want to polish it. I want to do everything."

Chaz Bono: First Transgender Contestant to Compete on DWTS

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Son of entertainers Sonny Bono and Cher, Chaz made history as the first transgender DWTS contestant during season 13 in 2011. Partnered with professional ballroom dancer Lacey Schwimmer, Bono's goal was to inspire others in the LGBTQ community.

"Doing this show is an opportunity for me to reach a larger more mainstream audience with just a simple message of being transgender is okay and not something to be scared of," Bono tells PEOPLE.

Allison Holker: First Competitor to Compete Pregnant on DWTS

Allison Holker Stephen Boss expecting baby

Although not a celebrity contestant, the dancing professional made history when she became the first person to compete on the show while pregnant during season 25. Before taking the stage alongside partner Andy Grammer, she and her husband announced the exciting news – and her decision to keep competing.

"I've had a child before and I worked all the way through eight months. I was traveling on tour, so I think I can definitely handle it," she tells PEOPLE of continuing to dance. "This is what I do and what I know. If you were athletic before you were pregnant, you should stay athletic. I'm not scared of the challenge and I think it's a beautiful thing to experience."

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