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Rev. Alyce Smith-Cooper


Bridge Builder

Rev. Alyce Smith-Cooper, African-American ancestral storyteller and actor, provided healings, motivational, and diversity training sessions. As an ancestral storyteller, Alyce introduced audiences to the world of African-American folklore through her vibrant words and expressive vocal techniques. She was widely recognized for creating cultural understandings in such widely ranging venues as the Old Globe Theatre, corporate and government classrooms (MCI, FBI), the Wild Animal Park, and the Bethel African-Methodist Episcopal Church. Smith-Cooper earned credentials as a registered nurse with a specialty in psychiatric nursing and held a master's degree in human behavior. She served as a staff chaplain at Scripps Memorial Hospital, an ordained minister, and as a spiritual counselor in private practice. Alyce is equally comfortable setting up motivational training programs or teaching schools and organizations how to deal with diversity. The psycho-dramatist finds deep meaning, strength, and healing from public storytelling. Her audiences become better listeners and more connected to life.

Alyce performed in Fortune 500 boardrooms, museums, libraries, schools, homes, and under trees, as Storyteller-in-Residence at San Diego's Children's Hospital and at San Diego Safari Park's Heart of Africa. In over 35 years of service, Rev. Smith-Cooper used the beauty of storytelling and the power of words to enhance the imagination. She sat, touched, sang, and prayed with the dying and their families. She encouraged students to explore their personal stories and to give free rein to their imaginations, spontaneity and creativity. Students developed an awareness of a rich and colorful culture and learned to appreciate the magical world of the storyteller.

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