Get Up, Stand Up, Vote
Bradley Whitford a classically trained stage actor who has received critical acclaim for his roles in theater, film, and television, gained overnight fame as the sarcastic yet vulnerable Josh Lyman on NBC's; The West Wing. One of the few actors working successfully and simultaneously in several mediums, Whitford has become one of Hollywood most sought-after talents.
Upcoming credits for Mr. Whitford include Studio 60 from the Sunset Strip. The NBC drama teams Whitford with Aaron Sorkin and provides a behind-the-scenes look at a fictional sketch-comedy TV show. Prior to Studio 60 from the Sunset Strip, for seven years Whitford appeared on the West Wing,created by Aaron Sorkin. Bradleys performance earned him a 2001 Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations in 2001 and 2002. Whitfords additional television credits include NBCs(in the critically acclaimed;Loves Labor Lostepisode),The X-Files and NYPD Blue.
Whitford recently completed production on the gritty true-crime drama An American Crime opposite Catherine Keener and Ellen Page. The film, written and directed by Tommy O Haver, tells the story of Sylvia Likens, a 16 year old woman who dies in 1965 while under the care of Gertrude Baniszewski. Whitford plays the prosecuting attorney in the trial of Baniszewski vs. the state of Indiana.
In the feature film world, Whitford most recently starred in two feature films:Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and Little Manhattan. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is Alcon Entertainments adaptation of the best-selling book by Ann Brashares. It is a coming-of-age story revolving around four friends during the first summer that they spend apart. Little Manhattan is a romantic comedy written and directed by Mark Levin and Jennifer Flackett for 20th Century Fox.
Whitford's additional film credits include Kate and Leopold opposite Meg Ryan and Hugh Jackman, The Muse with Albert Brooks, Bicentennial Man opposite Robin Williams, Scent of a Woman, A Perfect World, Philadelphia, The Client, My Life, Red Corner, Presumed Innocent and My Fellow Americans.
Growing up in Wisconsin, Whitford studied theater and English literature at Wesleyan University and attended the Juilliard Theater Center. Appearing on Broadway in Aaron Sorkin's military courtroom drama, A Few Good Men, Whitford's professional performance debut was in the off-Broadway production of Curse of the Starving Class; opposite Kathy Bates. Additional theater credits include;Three Days of Rain; at the Manhattan Theatre Club, Measure for Measure at the Lincoln Center Theater, and the title role in Coriolanus at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C.
Whitford lives in Los Angeles with his wife, actress Jane Kaczmarek, and their
children, Frances, George, and Mary Louisa.
David Ward on Teaching In His Own Words
When I was in school I liked my teachers. When I went to college I was even more impressed by my teachers, especially an English professor in particular. I wanted to emulate him. I learned that he had taught in junior and senior high school before becoming the powerhouse teacher he was when I met him in college. If this career path was good enough for Professor Smith, it would be good enough for me! So my plan was to start teaching in high school (I couldn't see myself in junior high after Melville and Northrop Frye) and work my way into the groves of academe. That was the plan. The reality and the challenges and the importance of teaching in a large public high school in turbulent times made me realize my route would be much shorter than Mr. Smith's, although the journey would be just as long. In a sense I never graduated from high school.
So my teaching biography is pretty simple: I graduated from (Trinity) college in June 1967 and that summer I started teaching summer school at West Philadelphia High School as part of the Temple University Intern Teaching Program, which helped me earn certification while I earned a paycheck as a teacher! In the fall of 1967 I started as a full-time English teacher at Overbrook High School in Philadelphia, best known for Wilt Chamberlain, astronautGuy Bluford, and Will Smith, whom I actually taught his junior year. I stayed at Overbrook for 35 years until I retired from the school district in June 2002. At Overbrook I also coached football and dramatics, which I really enjoyed because these activities gave me different ways of relating to two different kinds of kids. Although I saw a lot of changes over those years, I loved Overbrook despite the frustrations that a severely stressed inner city school entails. Most of the faculty were dedicated people, and we always had kids who inspired us at least as much as they challenged us. After one year of actual retirement, I went back to the Philadelphia schools as a literacy coach, helping teachers at South Philadelphia High School for two years. I liked it a lot because I could be in the classroom with kids and their teachers daily, but I was also free to stand back and observe the bigger picture of the whole school reform effort at the same time.
Recently, I spent time in some New York City schools helping them start after-school programs for at-risk kids who failed ninth grade. Currently, I am interested in helping to get a remarkably effective independent reading program called The 100 Book Challenge into schools to address the national reading problem we have in our country today. From my experience, well done, ongoing teacher development is the key to educational progress.