Robert Shetterly's Americans Who Tell The Truth

portraits and narratives highlight citizens who courageously address issues of social, environmental, and economic fairness.

By combining art and other media, AWTT offers resources to inspire a new generation of engaged Americans who will act for the common good, our communities, and the Earth.


The Samantha Smith Challenge

Open to middle school and high school students, this year's theme is Show US Who You Are! View 2020-2021 Guidelines. 

Speaking Truth to Youth

We are excited to announce the launch of our short-video series Speaking Truth to Youth.

Support a doc on Rob Shetterly

Award-winning filmmaker, Richard Kane, is making a documentary about Robert Shetterly and Americans Who Tell the Truth. To learn more, go to:

Most Recent Portraits

Our full gallery now includes 250 portraits of American truth-tellers. You can browse the full gallery. Or just begin your exploration by linking to a few of the most recent additions to the series here. 

Also, check out our newest collection of videos: Speaking Truth to Youth.  Some of our inspiring living portrait subjects share their insights on activism.  


  • Cove Street Arts: I Am an American

    Portland, Maine

    “I Am An American” exhibition opens Thursday, Nov. 12 at Cove Street Arts in Portland, Maine. 

  • Robert Shetterly Portrait Contest

    Hosted by The My HERO Project

    Americans Who Tell the Truth and The MY HERO Project are co-sponsoring this year's Robert Shetterly Portrait Contest. The deadline for submissions is December 10, 2020. 

  • Using Storytelling for Social Justice

    Hosted by Northeast Storytelling

    Saturday, November 14, 2020 3-4:30 p.m. Andy Davis—storyteller and peace activist—will moderatea panel of experts who have successfully used storytelling to shine a light on social justice issues. Panelists will discuss how to make a peaceful, sustainable, compassionate societyirresistiblethrough a mighty stream of stories.

  • AWTT Exhibit at Zumi's in Ipswich, MA

    Ipswich, MA
    Hosted by Zumi's

    Announcement fromZumi's: So honored and excited for this timely 2020 Art Exhibit at Zumi’s. It will be up throughout the month of October- don’t miss it! So much inspiration in this community engagement project featuring the artwork of Robert Shetterly.

  • The BTS Center Summer Arts Series

    Hosted by The BTS Center

    In partnership with Americans Who Tell the Truth, The BTS Center's first online gathering in their 2020 Summer Arts series will feature presentations by visual artist Rob Shetterly and indigenous environmental scientist and author Robin Wall Kimmerer, as well as some music.

  • W.E.B. Du Bois Remembered

    On this day in 1868, William Edward Burghardt Du Bois - scholar, writer, editor, and civil rights pioneer - was born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. "Education must not simply teach work - it must teach life." Read short AWTT biography of Du Bois More in-depth biography from the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research Audio of Du Bois speaking

  • Interview with Claudette Colvin

    In this rare interview with CNN's Abby Phillip,  Claudette Colvin, now 81, explains why she believes many female activists were overlooked in histories of the Civil Rights Movement. 

  • Clyde Kennard: The Unheard Word Reprised

    Hattiesburg, Mississippi

    Clyde Kennard's story - of his persistent attempts to enter the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) in the 1950's  - is one of the lesser known stories of the mid-20th-century Civil Rights Movement. 

  • Ballad of an American: a Graphic Biography of Paul Robeson

    Get a sneak peak of Sharon Rudahl's new graphic biography of  singer, writer, civil rights activist Paul Robeson in Yes! Magazine. 

  • Pauli Murray and Black Trans Rights Shine at Sundance

    Who is Pauli Murray? The pioneering African American legal scholar and organizer for racial and gender equality was celebrated this week at the annual Sundance Film Festival with the premier of the new documentary, “My Name is Pauli Murray.”