LOCATION JW Marriott Indianapolis
DATE November 8, 201811/08/2018 07:00 AM11/08/2018 04:00 PM

Retta

(Marietta Sangai Sirleaf, PH.D.)

RETTA (MARIETTA SANGAI SIRLEAF, PH.D.)
Actress and comedian Retta has delighted audiences with her performance aptitude and comedy precision and has established herself as a consistent first pick for Hollywood.

Retta currently stars as Ruby on the NBC hit series “Good Girls” also starring Christina Hendricks and Mae Whitman. Retta plays Ruby, one of three friends who are weary of the daily grind. Together, they decide to pull off a supermarket heist, only to find they are in for more than they bargained. Audiences also adore Retta as Barbara on the Bravo hit series “Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce,” a drama, exploring friendship and the post-divorce ups and downs. Retta spent a memorable seven seasons playing the uber beloved office mate Donna Meagle on NBC’s critically acclaimed comedy “Parks and Recreation.”

In addition to her success in acting, Retta is also a critically acclaimed author, publishing her first work entitled “So Close To Being the Sh*t Y’all Don’t Even Know”, which is in bookstores as of May 2018.

Retta has enjoyed success in feature films as well. In 2017, Retta starred in the teenage tale “Middle School: The Worst Years of my Life as Ida Sticker, as well as independent films “Band Aid,” “To the Bone” and “Where’s the Money?” She previously starred in the franchise “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip,” and the independent drama “Other People” which premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. Other films include “Bastards” with Ed Helms and Owen Wilson, “Fracture” with Anthony Hopkins, “First Sunday” with Ice Cube and Katt Williams, “Sex & Death 101” with Simon Baker, and “Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star” with David Spade.

Retta, born Marietta Sirleaf to immigrant parents from Liberia, grew up in New Jersey. Upon graduating pre-med from Duke University with a degree in Sociology, Retta decided to take a year off before medical school to work as a contract chemist before she decided to pursue her dream of having her own sitcom. Realizing there were several sitcom stars that started as comedians (Roseanne, Drew Carrey, Tim Allen, Brett Butler) she began doing stand-up in Raleigh NC and soon decided to make the move to LA.

Retta started performing in Los Angeles and eventually began showcasing for the National Association for Campus Activities. She became a must-see act on the college circuit and soon was nominated for female comedian of the year by Campus Activities Magazine. She was Comedy Central’s first winner of their Laugh Riots Stand-Up Competition, which led to an appearance on the New Faces Showcase at Montreal’s “Just For Laughs” Comedy Festival. This performance led to a development deal with ABC/Disney.

Retta’s television appearances include: “The Kroll Show” “It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia,” “Key and Peele,” “Premium Blend” and “Comedy Central Presents…Retta.” She has also created her own starring role as “Twitter Queen” thrilling her fans with her live interpretations of the television shows she loves.

Retta’s endless entertaining prowess and comedic vigor keeps both her devoted following and Hollywood captivated. She currently resides in Los Angeles.

Breakout Speakers

Leah Weiss, Ph.D.

Laura Vanderkam

Suzanne Johnson Vickberg, Ph.D.

Catherine Sanderson

Sally Helgesen

Sylvia Lafair, Ph.D.

Amber Rae

Joy Fitzgerald

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