Actor Biography

Anita Shontel Woodley

ANITA WOODLEY is an award-winning actress, journalist, writer, director, improv performer, and visual artist. She is the creator of the solo performer shows Mama Juggs,  The Men in Me, and the 100 Living Rooms – Beauty Shop Breast Cancer Awareness Project touring throughout the US and Internationally.

Woodley, based in Chapel Hill, NC, is the 2012 Durham Arts Council’s Emerging Artist in Drama. In 2011 Mama Juggs won the “Best of the Best!” award at the MALI Women’s Film & Performance Arts Conference in Austin, Texas.

Anita has been invited to perform for audiences ranging from Benedictine Nuns at Sacred Heart Monastery to the University of Yaounde, Africa. In 2010 while visiting the Cameroon rainforest, she reunited with her maternal Tikar tribe. Anita became the first African-American descendant since enslavement to return to the bush village, learn their native language and be honored with a traditional naming ceremony.

Formerly she worked as an award winning national journalist/producer for (APM) American Public Media & (NPR) Affiliate Station WUNC-FM’s The Story with Dick Gordon, a syndicated first-person narrative program on over 100 stations. She has won numerous prestigious awards from the Harry Chapin Foundation for Hunger & Poverty, the National Association of Black Journalists, and an Emmy with (CNN)News for Exceptional Coverage on September 11th, 2001.

Mama Juggs has been warmly received by audiences across the U.S. Written as a promise to her mother – who died of breast cancer before 50 – it seeks to challenge cultural taboos and stereotypes surrounding breast health and body image. By raising both money and social consciousness, it’s designed to contribute to the winnable campaign against breast cancer.


  • 2013 – Named A Notable Alumni for Oakland Technical High School, Class of 1994
  • 2011/2012 – Ella Fountain Pratt Emerging Artists Grant, “The Men In Me Show,” DAC (Durham Arts Council)
  • 2011 – Network Radio – Interview/Discussion, “Prison to Life,” NABJ (National Association of Black Journalists)
  • 2011- Network Radio – Sports, “After Basketball,” NABJ
  • 2011- Network Radio – Feature, “The Evolution of Malcolm Shabazz,: NABJ
  • 2010 – Mama Juggs Voted “Best of the Best,” M.A.L.I. Women’s Film & Performance Arts Conference, Austin, TX

• 2010 – Network Radio – Interview/Discussion, “When Living in a Hotel is No Vacation,” NABJ

• 2010 – Network Radio – Sports, “Off the Corner,”NABJ

• 2009 – Network Radio -Interview/Discussion Award, “Lessons from a Dropout,” NABJ

• 2008 – Radio – Harry Chapin Media Award, “A New Life in a Foreclosed Home,”WHY

• 2008 – Network Radio -Interview/Discussion Award, “Playground to Prison,”NABJ

• 2008 – Network Radio -Sports Award, “Courage on the Court” NABJ• 2006 – Harry Chapin Media Award – Radio, Finalist “Gift of a Loan” WHY• 2001 – Emmy Award, “CNN Exceptional Coverage on 9/11” NATAS
  • 2000 – Francia Young Memorial Award “Most Promising Minority Journalist, Community Leader and Scholar for  Exceptional work as a Journalist,” SFSU/Broadcast Journalism
  • 2000 – Recognition as a “Pioneer with Contributions for Others to Follow,” SFSU/Equal Opportunity Program
  • 2000 – Golden Key National Honor Society Lifetime Member
  • 2000 – San Francisco State University, B.A., Radio and Television, Magna Cum Laude

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