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Tavis Smiley (pronounced /ˈtævɨs/; born September 13, 1964) is a talk show host, author, political commentator, entrepreneur, advocate and philanthropist. Smiley was born in Gulfport, Mississippi and grew up in Kokomo, Indiana. After attending Indiana University, he worked during the late 1980s as an aide to Tom Bradley, the mayor of Los Angeles. Smiley became a radio commentator in 1991, and starting in 1996 he hosted the talk show BET Talk (later renamed BET Tonight) on BET. Controversially, after Smiley sold an exclusive interview of Sara Jane Olson to ABC News in 2001, BET declined to renew Smiley's contract that year. Smiley then began hosting The Tavis Smiley Show on NPR from 2002 to 2004 and currently hosts Tavis Smiley on PBS and "The Tavis Smiley Show" from PRI. Most recently, he and close friend Dr. Cornel West have joined forces for their own radio talk show, "Smiley & West". They were featured together interviewing musician Bill Withers in the 2009 documentary film Still Bill.
Wikipedia | PBS SITE

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