Donald E. Lacy, Jr. (Author, Performer) is a writer, director, actor, comedian, radio talk show host, and activist. In 2018 the Studio City Film Festival created the Donald E. Lacy, Jr. Social Justice Award, to be awarded to filmmakers whose films address social issues. In 2017 he was awarded the Legacy award from Theater Bay Area for his artistic and activist achievements. As a comedian, he was inducted into the Bay Area Blues society Hall of Fame in 2013. He earned BA's in Theater Arts, (with a film minor) and Black Studies from San Francisco State University. His T.V./Film acting credits include: "Cherry" with James Franco, NBC's "Trauma," "Jack" directed by Francis Ford Coppola, "Blood In, Blood Out" directed by Taylor Hackford, "L.A. Heat," ABC's "Hangin' with Mr. Cooper" and CBS's "Wolf." His recent stage credits include Wynton in "The Royale" at the Aurora Theater and Gabriel in August Wilson’s "Fences" at California Shakespeare Theater.

Lacy on the air at KPOO

From 1980 to 2018, he hosted a Saturday morning radio show on KPOO (89.5-FM), a black-owned community radio station in San Francisco. In that show, he interviewed such luminaries as Gil Scott-Heron, Dr. Angela Davis, Phyllis Hymen Dick Gregory and August Wilson.

His produced plays include "The Loudest Scream You'll Never Hear," based on the Atlanta child murders. In 2013, as a response to the Trayvon Martin murder, he created another solo show, "How Did The World Get Here?" He also premiered a solo show, "LoEshe'," about the life and untimely death of his daughter, at the 1998 Afro Solo Festival. He has written three feature films, received a Bay Area Cable Excellence Award and a Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame Award for his PSA, "Precious Gift." He toured 75 cities with the Harlem Globetrotters as "The Voice." As a comedian he has appeared on BET's "Comic View" and HBO's "Def Comedy Jam." He has appeared in clubs from Chicago to Kasiserslauten, Germany and entertained the troops in a Far East USO tour. He was inducted into the Bay Area Blues Society Hall of Fame as a comedian/emcee in 2013. He and his wife have two sons.

Mr. Lacy is active in Campo Santo, a performance group in San Francisco, and recently appeared in its production of "Candlestick" by Bennett Fisher at American Conservatory Theatre (ACT).

Publicity photo for "Candlestick"

The play is set among 49ers fans tailgating during the team's final season at Candlestick Park in 2013. It explores change in the Bay Area community, especially for Black and Brown folks, through the symbolism of the team moving from the Black neighborhood of Bayview down into the gut of Silicon Valley. Read San Francisco Examiner article on that play.

In 2017, he appeared in "Casa De Spirits" written and directed by Roger Guenveur Smith for Campo Santo and "Wynton in The Royale" at the Aurora Theater in 2017. In 2016, he appeared as Gabriel in August Wilson’s "Fences" at California Shakespeare Theater, "The River" by Richard Montoya and "The Shelter," an adaptation of Maxim Gorky's "The Lower Depths" at the Odyssey Theater (directed by the great Valery Belyakovich from the Moscow Are Theater). He also appeared in a 25 city tour with The Miles Davis Experience for Columbia Records.

In 2018, Van Jones and a CNN film crew accompanied Lacy to capture his first meeting with the man convicted of murdering his 16 year old daughter. Lacy forgave him on camera to set an example to all people that forgiveness is possible. Lacy also attended his parole hearing several months later and spoke on his behalf. Parole was granted and the shooter, now remorseful, was released later that year. Jones' CNN special, "The Redemption Project," aired May 12, 2109. To-date, it has been viewed by over 14 million people worldwide. (https://tinyurl.com/tzr6a9b)

Watch "The Redemption Project" on CNN
CNN illustration by Max Pepper


Sean San José (Director) has collaborated with Mr. Lacy since 2000. He is co-Founder of Campo Santo, a performances company for people of color in San Francisco. For 15 years he was Program Director of Performance for Intersection for the Arts, San Francisco’s oldest alternative arts space.

He co-created Alma Delfina Group-Teatro Contra el SIDA and "Pieces of the Quilt," a collection of 50+ short plays on AIDS. He teaches in the Theater, Dance and Performance Studies Department at University of California at Berkeley. San José has also directed Richard Montoya and Culture Clash's "Sapo" for the Getty Museum in Malibu, multiple plays for Magic Theatre in San Francisco and the deYoung Museum in San Francisco, and for Youth Speaks at University of California at Berkeley, San José State University, and more. His writing commissions and productions include "Play On!" for Oregon Shakespeare Festival, American Conservatory, Ictus Productions, Kronos Quartet, and others. He has created original theatrical works from the prose writings of Jimmy Santiago Baca, Junot Diaz, Dave Eggers, Jessica Hagedorn Denis Johnson, Luís Saguar, Vendela Vida and more.


Tommy Soulati Shepherd (soundscape, music) is the GRAMMY-nominated Music Director of Alphabet Rockers and is internationally renowned for his beatboxing, which is featured in Oakland-based a capella super group Antique Naked Soul. He has toured internationally in hip hop theater productions of Campo Santo and Dan Wolf and is a co-founder of Felonious, a hip hop collective. Shepherd has performed and toured internationally with Marc Bamuthi Joseph, collaborating on "Scourge," "The Break/s," "Spoken World" and "Red, Black and Green: a Blues."