Phalana Tiller

← Back to all Portraits of Success

Phalana Tiller 2001

Phalana Tiller
Working internationally as an actor and freelance writer, Phalana Tiller leads a fast-paced life that most people only dream about. She divides her time among Johannesburg, South Africa; New York; and Los Angeles. No two days are ever alike, with auditions, studying lines, researching characters, going to call-backs, and editing her own writing.

“I really enjoy the variety of my days, and the fact that there is very little predictability when it comes to when, where, and how I work,” she says. Currently, she is starring in a national network sitcom in South Africa, has a recurring role on a prime-time show on CBS, and is working on her own screenplay, which she aspires to direct some day.

The message she received from The Scholarship Fund has stayed with her as she works and lives around the world.  “When I was granted an award by The Fund, I was imbued with a sense of responsibility and pride,” she says. “I felt that by accepting a scholarship that my teachers, coaches, friends’ parents, and fellow Alexandria residents had worked hard to collect, I could not be mediocre. That attachment gave me the incentive to be a decent person once I got out into the wide world ahead.”

T.C. Williams Class of 1989
B.A., History, University of Virginia, 1994
M.S., Education, University of Virginia, 1994