Anna Deavere Smith

2023 Commencement Speaker

Anna Deavere Smith

Playwright, actor, educator, and Baltimore native Anna Deavere Smith delivered the keynote address at Goucher College’s Class of 2023 Commencement ceremony.

Smith uses her singular brand of theatre to explore issues of community, character, and diversity in America. The MacArthur Foundation honored Smith with the “Genius” Fellowship, and she is also the recipient of the 2012 National Humanities Medal; the 2015 Jefferson Lecturer honor; a Guggenheim Fellowship; and the George Polk Career Award for authentic Journalism. Smith also starred in television’s “The West Wing,” “Nurse Jackie,” and “Inventing Anna.”

Additionally,Time Magazine named her play “Notes From the Field” one of the Top 10 Plays of the year. That project explored the intersection of education and incarceration in America, and for background research, Smith interviewed students from the Goucher Prison Education Partnership. 

Read More

Previous Commencement speakers