Directing is really about communicating your vision clearly with people.

Salli Richardson-Whitfield

A member at Braemar Country Club, Tarzana, Calif., since 2011

BY LOUIS MARROQUIN / PHOTO BY JANOS KUMMER — Fall 2019

Who she is: An actress known for roles in shows such as Eureka and The Newsroom, she has refocused her career in recent years as an in-demand director of episodic television.

Recent gigs: Her 2019 workload has included directing episodes of ABC’s black-ish, Netflix’s Altered Carbon, Starz’s American Gods, and the upcoming Treadstone for USA Network.

The big switch: Though she still acts, mostly small roles in shows she directs, directing dominates her schedule. “If you want to be great at something, you can’t just dabble. You need to really make that commitment, so that’s what I’ve decided to do.”

Directing actors: “Being an actor myself gives me a leg up working with other actors. I know what they need and I know how to communicate better with them. I think they inherently trust me because I speak their language.”

Importance of diversity behind the camera: “Everyone’s voice is important. People of different races, of different genders, are going to tell stories differently because they have different experiences — and that’s a good thing.”

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