"Sold, shackled, scattered but spirit not extinguished." Smith Cooper (right) and Shammy Dee in "Open Your Heart." Photo: Courtesy of the artist.

Alyce Smith Cooper

Ancestral storytelling

Ancestral storytelling
Smith Cooper, “The Elder Speaks.” Photo: Courtesy of the artist.

Alyce Smith Cooper is known by many as the Golden Brown Fairy Godmother.  She is a storyteller, minister, poet and actress.  Through her art and ministry she has been dedicated to social and racial justice.  For the past forty years, she has been exciting the imaginations of children of all ages.  She was recently recognized out of eleven hundred remarkable applicants as a Legacy Art Fellow by the California Arts Council.


Smith Cooper speaks about becoming the first African-American instructor in the Palomar College Nursing Program.

Teaching While Black, by Alyce Smith Cooper (2023)





Living Cultures Grant


Equity Through Generational Storytelling

With funding from ACTA’s Living Cultures Grant Program, Smith Cooper will work with consultants to develop and operationalize a professional social media strategy to disseminate her body of work to a larger population. She aims to increase access to her work, build connections across the world, and receive feedback from a diverse audience.



Michael Felts | michaelfelts@tota.world

Invest in California’s cultural wealth.

Every gift is a commitment to a culture bearer, and the people of California.