Chrishaunda Lee Perez to Deliver Atlanta Girls’ School 2021 Commencement Address

Author, Producer, Creator, and Orator Chrishaunda Lee Perez will deliver Atlanta Girls’ School commencement address on May 22, 2021. As a graduate of Miss Porter’s School and Wesleyan University, Ms. Perez and her work amplify the voices and stories of girls and women through empathetic storytelling. 

“We are ecstatic to have Ms. Perez as the commencement speaker for the Class of 2021 at Atlanta Girls’ School,” Head of School Ayanna Hill-Gill said. “I had the opportunity to first meet Ms. Perez in February of 2020 when she was the keynote speaker at the STAR Student luncheon sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Atlanta. It was shortly after her speech that I read her novel, We Come as Girls, We Leave as Women, and was reminded of the power of one’s story and journey. As a graduate of an all-girls school herself, Ms. Perez understands, values, and champions young women’s education. We are thrilled to welcome her to our campus as she speaks words of encouragement and inspiration to the graduates of the Class of 2021.”

Ms. Perez earned her start in media, television, and film serving as a publicist and then in front of the camera as a correspondent for The Oprah Winfrey Show and later on Entertainment Tonight. She is most known for her best-selling debut novel, We Come as Girls, We Leave as Women. Praised by Oprah Winfrey and Paula Wallace, founder and president of Savannah College of Art and Design, the coming of age novel poignantly captures the difficult decisions and challenges that teen girls face as they are on the cusp of adulthood. 

Ms. Perez serves as a public speaker in a variety of forums, in addition to her conversation program, The Young and Woke Show. The streaming talk show celebrates and tells the story of people, places, and ideas that push world culture forward. From everyday people to those who are widely known, the stories on The Young and Woke Show are varied and unique with the similar goal of generating solutions to the world’s most pressing issues.

For decades, Ms. Perez has focused her work on elevating the voice of women and teen girls, and they often serve as a key theme in her written and spoken works. Enlightening audiences from around the world through advocacy and storytelling, we are honored to have Chrishaunda Lee Perez address our Class of 2021 and serve as this year’s Commencement Speaker.