Tavis Smiley

A popular figure in various forms of media, Tavis Smiley is an American talk show host, radio presenter and bestselling author with a particular interest in politics and social issues. Smiley began his political career ... Read more »
Born: 09/13/1964 in Gulfport, Mississippi, USA

Filmography

Actor (17)

Conan 2016 (Tv Show)

Guest

The Daily Show 2016 (Tv Show)

Guest

Dancing With the Stars 2003 - 2005, 2014 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Actor

For Your Love 1998 - 1999, 2003 - 2005, 2014 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Actor

Real Time with Bill Maher 2003 - 2005, 2008, 2011 - 2012, 2014 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Actor

Tavis Smiley 1998 - 1999, 2003 - 2005, 2014 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Host

Sinister 2012 (Movie)

Anchor (Actor)

The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 2012 (Tv Show)

Actor

Jimmy Carter Man from Plains 2007 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

American Dreams 2004 (Tv Show)

Actor

BET Tonight 1997 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

Any Day Now 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

The 30th NAACP Image Awards 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Presenter

EmergeTV 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Race in America: A Multicultural Dialogue 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

BET Talk 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)

Actor

One Special Moment (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A popular figure in various forms of media, Tavis Smiley is an American talk show host, radio presenter and bestselling author with a particular interest in politics and social issues. Smiley began his political career while still in college by interning at the office of Los Angeles mayor Tom Bradley, a spot that led to a position as an aide. Smiley later shifted to radio commentary and began contributing to national syndicated shows, with his growing presence leading to guest spots on the political programming of networks such as CNN and MSNBC. By the late 1990s, Smiley was hosting "BET Tonight" (BET, 1998-2001), a show that discussed social issues from the African-American perspective, but he left the network over controversy related to his interview with a member of a 1970s revolutionary group. In 2004, his career truly kicked into high gear when he began his televised talk show, "Tavis Smiley," for PBS, along with "The Tavis Smiley Show," a radio program for Public Radio International (PRI). Continuing to juggle both series, Smiley found time to write a number of well-received books, making him something of a 21st century multi-media Renaissance man.

EDUCATION

Indiana University

Milestones

2012

Co-wrote The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto with West

2010

Teamed up with Dr. Cornel West for the radio show "Smiley & West"

2006

Co-wrote What I Know for Sure: My Story of Growing Up in America

2006

Published The Covenant with Black America

2004

Premiered "The Tavis Smiley Show" on PRI

2004

Appeared on "American Dreams" as Thurgood Marshall

2004

Debuted "Tavis Smiley" on PBS

1996

Began working for BET

Bonus Trivia

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Smiley has won multiple NAACP Image Awards.

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Smiley's The Covenant with Black America was the first non-fiction book by an African-American-owned publishing company to reach the top of The New York Times bestseller list.

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He was honored in 2009 by being selected as one of the "100 Most Influential People in the World" by Time.

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