Sampson was a ground breaking rodeo cowboy. Sampson stands 5ft 4in tall. He was the first Afro-American to win a world title in the PRCA. To avoid the violence that surrounded him as a boy, he took a job at a riding stables near Gardena, CA. There he sparked an interest in horses and rodeo. He was a fan of the Jackie Robinson of rodeo Myrtis Dightman.
In 1983, there were only 6 black members of the PRCA. Charles was competing on a national level. Charlie very rarely mentioned race as an issue, even though he was competing in a sport dominated by white competitors. Charles once said in the New York Times, “I haven’t encountered discrimination as much as ignorance. Some people still don’t realize that something like a quarter of all the cowboys back in the old West were black.”