Robert Shetterly's Americans Who Tell The Truth

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

Mary Ellen Tracy
I teach at one of the schools which Samantha Smith attended. Because of this, when I heard about thisSamantha Smith Challenge (click to sign up your students)I was excited to learn more.
David Hilton
I know my time with my students will have been worthwhile if, at the end of our class, each child has grown as a citizen. I want my students to learn to be aware, empathetic, and active. The Samantha Smith Challengefits right into this approach.
Adele Drake
Robert Shetterly's portraits cut to the chase in a compelling way. Students could access the profound sentiments that these portraits represent.
Dr. Elisa Díaz-Martínez
Robert’s Americans Who Tell the Truth has become a distinctive and profound way of teaching American History and American Thought...His work will help us advance towards common understanding and tolerance.
Karyn Field
During the 2013/2014 school year, teachers Karyn Field and Sharyn Hastings used the AWTT portraits and resources to help students analyze "themes related to scapegoating, intolerance and social strife." Students wrote poems, orchestrated press conference
Laurie Solchenberger
I am a special and regular educator in Madison, WI. My students used your images to discuss how some people choose to do amazing things with their lives: some in big ways, some in small ways, but always by finding something they believe in.
Kristen Zoeller
Finally, I was shown people of all backgrounds who had made a difference; finally, I found people who were so normal, who I could relate to, and yet were so profound. Suddenly, there was no more excuse.

The Samantha Smith Challenge

The 2017/18 Samantha Smith Challenge Celebration, an initiative of AWTT and MAMLE, convened on June 4, 2018 at Thomas College in Waterville, Maine. This year's theme was "Social Justice Through the Arts". Learn more here.

Introducing a new, in-development project, engagEd. Lessons plans from the AWTT Truth Tellers that will help teach your students to engage the world and its challenges. Please check out our resources for educators.

Most Visited Portraits

Our full gallery now includes over 200 portraits of American truth-tellers. You can browse the full gallery. Or just begin your exploration by linking to a few of our site-users' favorites here.


  • Full Array of AWTT Portraits on Display at Syracuse University

    Syracuse University
    Hosted by Tanner Lecture Series

    Lecture: November 29, 2018 | 7:30 p.m. EST | Setnor Auditorium, Crouse CollegeExhibition: November 26 through December 14 | Panasci Lounge, Schine Student CenterAs announced by Syracuse University Lecture Series:

  • Robert Shetterly at Rosemont College: Public Talk October 27, 2015

    Rosemont, Pennsylvania
    Hosted by Rosemont College

    Robert Shetterly will spend the last week of October 2015 at Rosemont College in Rosemont, Pennsylvania.

  • New Carter G. Woodson Portrait to be Unveiled in Hampton, Virginia

    Hampton History Museum
    Hosted by ASALH, AWTT, Hampton History Museum


  • AWTT Exhibit in Greensboro, North Carolina

    The International Civil Rights Center & Museum / Guilford College Library
    Hosted by AWTT / Education for Engaged Activism / The International Civil Rights Center & Museum / Guilford College

    52 portraits will be exhibited at The International Civil Rights Center & Museum and at the Guilford College Library in Greensboro, NC from November 14, 2015 to February 14, 2016.

  • AWTT Exhibit at YMI Cultural Center, Asheville, North Carolina

    YMI Cultural Center, 39 S. Market Street, Asheville, North Carolina
    Hosted by AWTT / Education for Engaged Activism / YMI Cultural Center

    52 AWTT portraits will be at the YMI Cultural Center in Asheville, North Carolina.

  • Dahr Jamail: The End of Ice

    Madison, WI

    Freelance Journalist Frances Madeson interviews Dahr Jamail about his recent book: The End of Ice

  • David Korten's New Year's Resolution: From Me to We

    We must move beyond the myth of the lone individual to recognize our deep interdependence and responsibilities for one another and nature.

  • Ninth Circuit Court Grants Government's Interlocutory Appeal in Juliana case

    Eugene, Oregon

    On December 26, in a 2-1 decision, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals granted defendants’ petition for permission to bring an interlocutory appeal in Juliana v. United States, the landmark constitutional climate lawsuit brought by young Americans.

  • None of Us Deserve Citizenship


    Don't miss Michelle Alexander's impassioned and powerful op-ed column in the 12/11 New York Times!

  • Juliana Plaintiffs Back in Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

    San Francisco, CA

    On December 10, attorneys for the 21 young plaintiffs in the landmark constitutional climate lawsuit, Juliana v. United States, filed their answer in opposition to the fifth petition of the Trump administration to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In their Fifth Petition, Defendants seek permission for an early appeal before trial.