Shonda Rhimes is the prolific writer, executive producer and creator of the hit ABC series Grey's Anatomy, and Scandal. In addition to creating the Grey's Anatomy spinoff series Private Practice, Rhimes is the executive producer of the ABC series How to Get Away with Murder, Still Star-Crossed, The Catch and the upcoming drama series For The People.
For her collective work on her various shows, Rhimes is the recipient of a Golden Globe for Outstanding Television Drama, Peabody Award, Television Producer of the Year by the Producers Guild of America, Writers Guild Award for Best New Series, GLAAD Media Award, as well as numerous AFI Awards for Television Program of the Year and an unprecedented 6 NAACP Image Awards for Writing for Outstanding Writing in a Dramatic Series plus 8 NAACP Image Awards for Outstanding Drama Series.
Rhimes has twice been included in TIME Magazine's 100 list of the most influential people along with Fortune Magazine's "50 Most Powerful Women in Business," and Glamour Magazine's "Women of the Year." In 2013, Rhimes was appointed by President Obama to serve as Trustee for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In 2014, Rhimes, along with producing partner Betsy Beers, received the Directors Guild of America's prestigious Diversity Award. Rhimes was additionally a 2014 recipient of the W. E. B. Du Bois Medal from Harvard and the Sherry Lansing Leadership Award from The Hollywood Reporter. In 2015, Rhimes was awarded the Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement from the Writers Guild of America, West, as well as inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Broadcasting Hall of Fame. She was additionally honored with the Ally for Equality Award from the Human Rights Council, the Eleanor Roosevelt Global Women's Rights Award from the Feminist Majority Foundation and 2016 Norman Lear Achievement Award in Television from the Producers Guild. Most recently, Ms. Rhimes received the 2016 Personality of the Year Award from MIPCOM as well as the International Emmy Founders Award, for her contributions to the quality of global television production. In May of 2017, Rhimes will receive the Champion of Change Award from Planned Parenthood, for her commitment to transforming the conversation around the issues of gender, sex and sexuality, and race.
In 2016, Rhimes was asked to produce a short biopic of Senator Hillary Clinton for the Democratic National Convention. Rhimes interviewed President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton and Senator Hillary Clinton among others for the piece. The film was shown on the closing night of the DNC and was narrated by Morgan Freeman.
Rhimes released her first book, "Year of Yes" from Simon & Schuster in November of 2015. The book, which candidly chronicles her moving and humorous attempts to come out of her shell by saying "yes" to everything that scares her, was an instant New York Times bestseller and in 2016 Rhimes followed up with a companion piece, "The Year of Yes Journal."
Most recently, Rhimes partnered with Dove to as Creative Director to their #RealBeautyCampaign. In this role, Rhimes is collaborating with the Dove team and real women across the country to bring their real stories to life while expanding the definition of beauty. The Campaign will launch in May 2017. Rhimes also partnered with Pilot Pen to award the G2 Overachievers Grant to enhance the reach of ordinary heroes who give back to their community in unique and impactful ways.
Additionally, Rhimes will be expanding her brand with the launch Shondaland.com a digital storytelling platform that will feature first-person essays, exclusive interviews, reported features, advice, podcasts and video. Shondaland.com will kick off with its first newsletter in May of 2017 and the full site will launch in the fall.
Rhimes also serves on the board of several non-profit organizations. Most recently, she joined the national board of Planned Parenthood. In 2016, she founded The Rhimes Family Foundation which was created to support arts, education, and activism with a focus on promoting cultural inclusion, fighting for equality and standing up against bigotry of any kind. The Rhimes Family Foundation proudly supports the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Beyond 12, the John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and The IAMA Theater Company, where Rhimes holds the position of Patron of the Arts for the LA based Theater Company.
Rhimes began her career writing feature films including "Princess Diaries 2: A Royal Engagement" and "Crossroads." She also co-wrote "Introducing Dorothy Dandridge," produced by HBO and nominated for numerous awards, and for which Halle Berry won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for Best Actress in a miniseries for her portrayal of Dandridge. In 2004, Rhimes created her production company Shondaland.
Rhimes holds a BA from Dartmouth College in English Literature with Creative Writing. She received her MFA from the USC School of Cinema-Television. In 2014, Rhimes received an honorary PhD from USC as well as from Dartmouth where she was proud to deliver the commencement address.
The child of educators, Rhimes blames her parents for her rampant addiction to books. The youngest of six, she was born and raised outside of Chicago, IL, and now resides in Los Angeles with her three daughters.