Founder & Chair
Academy Award Winning Actor, Founder and Chair, Geena Davis
Institute on Gender in Media
Academy Award winner Geena Davis is one of Hollywood’s most respected actors, appearing in several roles that became cultural landmarks.
Davis received her first Academy Award, for Best Supporting Actress, for her role as the offbeat dog trainer Muriel Pritchett in Lawrence Kasdan’s The Accidental Tourist. She was again nominated for an Academy Award and Golden Globe for her performance in Ridley Scott’s Thelma & Louise, in which she co-starred with Susan Sarandon.
In 2019 Davis was honored with a second Oscar, this time the Academy’s Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, in recognition of the work Davis has done over the decades to achieve gender parity onscreen in film and television.
Earning the 2006 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Drama, Davis broke ground in her portrayal of the first female President of the United States in ABC’s hit show Commander in Chief.
Davis made her feature film debut starring opposite Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie. She went on to star in such films as The Fly, Beetlejuice, The Long Kiss Goodnight, Stuart Little, and A League of Their Own.
Few have achieved such remarkable success in as many different fields as Davis has: she is not only an Oscar and Golden Globe-winning actor, but a world-class athlete (at one time the nation’s 13th-ranked archer), a member of the genius society Mensa, and is now recognized for her tireless advocacy of women and girls nearly as much as for her acting accomplishments. She is the Founder and Chair of the non-profit Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, which engages film and television creators to dramatically increase the percentage of female characters — and reduce gender stereotyping — in media made for children 11 and under.
Davis also serves as the Chair of the Bentonville Film Festival Foundation a year-long initiative focused on promoting underrepresented voices of diverse storytellers in entertainment and media through research, education, and supporting the production and distribution of inclusive content.
Davis is an Executive Producer on the Gracie Award winning feature film This Changes Everything and Emmy nominated, People’s Choice and Gracie Award winning television show Mission Unstoppable on CBS.
Davis holds honorary degrees from Boston University, Bates College and New England College.