And in the original TNG bible, Data had an Asian or Pacific-Islander appearance, his name rhymed with "that-a," he was the creation of mysterious aliens, he had the actual personalities of his colony's survivors stored within him, and "Bill" Riker was prejudiced against him. Plus Geordi was the liaison with the ship's children, and Worf didn't exist.
Nothing against Tim Russ, but I never understood why the VGR producers didn't think any of the older African-American actors they looked at were suitable for the part. There were and are lots of great actors who could've fit the bill. Imagine Roscoe Lee Browne as Tuvok, for instance. That would've been something.