Kent State Alumni Makes Television History

Kent State University alumni Brian Michael Smith, a 2005 graduate with a B.S. in T.V. and Film Programming and a Minor in Theatre, is making television history as the first black transgender man to be featured as a series regular in a broadcast network show. 

This week, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Smith will join the cast of Fox's 911: Lone Star, a spinoff of the network's popular series 911. He will star alongside Rob Lowe and Liv Tyler as a “transgender male firefighter with a gift for observation worthy of Sherlock Holmes."

This December, Smith will appear in Showtime's The L Word: Generation Q, a follow-up to its acclaimed series The L Word which ran from 2004-2009. In The L Word: Generation Q, Smith will portray Pierce Williams, “a buttoned-up, fastidious, expert political strategist and a veteran of LA politics. Unlike his colleagues, he’s not quick to share details about his personal life, choosing to put all his energy into winning campaigns.”

In February 2019, Smith appeared in Portland Center Stage at the Armory's production of Cheryl Strayed's "Tiny Beautiful Things."

Previously, Smith has appeared on CBS's Blue Bloods, Showtime's Homeland, HBO's Girls, NBC's Chicago P.D., CBS's Person of Interest, NBC's Law & Order: SVU, and more. 

As an advocate for transmasculine representation, Smith has been featured in articles in VarietyThe New York TimesThe Guardian, and in profiles by NBC News and GLAAD

A mentor since his graduation from Kent State, Smith has taught through the Gear Up program at the University of Michigan, Wingspan Arts, Maysles Documentary Center, the Tribeca Film Institutes's Tribeca Teaches Program, and the Manhattan LGBT Center.

Photo Credit: Ben Esner


Media Contact:

Joni Koneval, 330-672-0116,

POSTED: Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - 10:52pm
UPDATED: Monday, November 4, 2019 - 8:41pm