This award was generously supported by Susan V. Berresford. _
Actor and playwright Anna Deavere Smith has worked in television, theater, and academia. She received an MA from the American Conservatory Theater. Her main focus is a project she developed in the 1970s, On the Road: A Search for American Character. Exploring the relationship between language and identity, she interviews and records hundreds of people of diverse backgrounds, focuses on a few characters, and then plays all those parts in one-person shows. Her works deal with social issues such as the Los Angeles riots in 1992 in Twilight: Los Angeles. Smith has appeared in several films, was a Pulitzer Prize nominee, and won a MacArthur Fellowship in 1996.