On Friday, Clark Atlanta University announced that actor, author, columnist, and commentator, Joseph C. Phillips has joined the University as a Theatre and Communications Studies professor.

CAU’s President, Dr. George T. French Jr. expressed his excitement in welcoming the new professor in a released statement.

“Joseph brings a wealth of awe-inspiring talent, meaningful engagement in the community, and a portfolio of informed, decisive commentary to the University,” Dr. French Jr said. “We anticipate that he will inspire independent thinking, civic responsibility, and a passion for interdisciplinary learning in our students—which aligns perfectly with our mantra to “lift our community by lifting our voices.” 

Phillips shared his excitement for the news on his official Facebook account. “The secret is out,” reads his status update. “I’m loving my new gig.”

Phillips received his BFA in acting in 1983 from the acting conservatory New York University after transferring from the University of the Pacific as a communications major. He also served as a fellow at the Centennial Institute at Colorado Christian College, the Abraham Lincoln Fellow at the Claremont Institute, and the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas. At the University of Kansas, he orchestrated, wrote, and taught a seven-week course called “Black Conservatism in America.”  

Phillips has fostered an impressive career in television, film, stage play, literature, and radio.

As an actor, he is perhaps best known for his role as Lt. Martin Kendall on the hit series “The Cosby Show.” He has appeared on many other shows including the Netflix award-winning series “13 Reasons Why”, “How to Get Away with Murder,” “NCIS” and “Good Trouble.” He is a also three-time NAACP Image Award nominee for his portrayal of Attorney Justus Ward on “General Hospital.”

His feature film credits include starring roles in “Strictly Business,” “Let’s Talk About Sex,” and “Midnight Blue.” Among his theatrical credits are starring roles in the Broadway production of “Six Degrees of Separation” and the Kennedy Center and American Playhouse productions of “A Raisin in the Sun.” He created the title role in “Dreaming Emmett,” Pulitzer and Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison’s only theatrical play.  

Phillips is the author of “He Talk Like a White Boy” and for eight years, wrote a widely syndicated weekly column titled “The Way I See It” that promoted conservative views such as traditional family, limited government, and a return to America’s founding principles. He was also a regular commentator for NPR and American Urban Radio Network. 

For ten years, he served as a director on the State Board of the California African American Museum, where he chaired the accessions committee, which was responsible for approving all art or artifacts for the museum’s collection.   

On Phillips’s extensive roster of civic engagements are his work as a motivational speaker with the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department’s “VIDA” program designed to redirect the lives of at-risk youth; the Special Olympics, and The Green Chimneys Foundation, of which he was an advisory board member; The Red Cross; Big Brothers of Greater Los Angeles; the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America; the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission; and Project Alpha, a partnership of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and the March of Dimes designed to address teenage pregnancy, sexual and physical abuse, and sexually transmitted disease.