Anna Deavere Smith is an actor, director, playwright and teacher whose work combines the journalistic technique of interviewing her subjects with the art of interpreting their words through performance. She was awarded a fellowship from the MacArthur Foundation in 1996 and has won numerous awards for her work in the theater, including two Obies and two Tony nominations. She is a tenured professor at New York University with an appointment to the Tisch School of Arts and an affiliation with New York University School of Law, as well as being the founding director of the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, dedicated to creating art for social change.