Acclaimed actress and singer Bellamy Young notably starred in her award-winning role as President Mellie Grant on ABC/Shonda Rhimes' Peabody Award-winning series "Scandal." She most recently starred on FOX's critically acclaimed drama "Prodigal Son."
Young's critically praised performance as the politically ambitious first lady then president has earned her a Best Supporting Actress statue from the Critics' Choice Television Awards, Entertainment Weekly's 25 Best Characters on TV, No. 15 on Entertainment Weekly's 50 Best TV Scenes of the Year and New York Post's Top 10 TV Actors, and she earned TV Guide Magazine's Fan Favorite Award. Rolling Stone Magazine described Young's portrayal as "the most badass first lady in TV history" and E!'s resident TV critic Kristin Dos Santos described Young as her "favorite character on TV ever."
Young most recently starred as Jessica Whitly alongside Michael Sheen in "Prodigal Son," whose second season wrapped on FOX earlier this year. Recently, Young was seen in Disney and Ava DuVernay's "A Wrinkle in Time" and "Dolly Parton's Heartstrings" for Netflix. She also starred alongside Lou Diamond Philips in the crime thriller "Night Stalker," as well as indie projects "Bernard & Huey" and Zoe Cassavetes' "Day Out of Days." Young has appeared alongside some of Hollywood's biggest stars in films such as Randall Wallace's "We Were Soldiers" with Mel Gibson, Madeleine Stowe and Greg Kinnear, and JJ Abrams' "Mission Impossible: III" alongside Tom Cruise, Laurence Fishburne and Philip Seymour Hoffman. She has also appeared in several independent films including the Sundance favorite "The Freebie" starring Dax Shepard, and she produced and starred in "A Country Remedy," which was filmed in her home state of North Carolina.
Young's extensive television resume has included recurring roles on CBS' long-running series "Criminal Minds" alongside Thomas Gibson and Joe Mantegna, ABC's "Dirty Sexy Money" alongside Donald Sutherland and Jill Clayburgh, portraying ASA Monica West on "CSI: Miami," and she appeared alongside Zach Braff on the hit comedy "Scrubs." Young made her television debut as Dr. Courtney Evens on the long-running NBC soap opera "Another World."
Young began her acting career onstage starring on Broadway in Cy Coleman's "The Life" and in the revival of Stephen Sondheim's "Merrily We Roll Along." Young's additional credits have included the first run of Randy Newman's "Faust" and the first run of Pulitzer prize-winning playwright, Landford Wilson's "Book of Days."
A trained singer, Young released her debut album "Far Away So Close," a collection of contemporary covers influenced by her North Carolina roots. In 2015, Young performed Nat King Cole's "The Christmas Song" at the White House Christmas Tree Lighting in Washington, D.C., for President Obama and his family.
Through her philanthropic work, Young serves as the national spokesperson for the Humane Society of the United States' campaign The Shelter Pet Project, a project promoting animal adoption from shelters and rescue groups. Young has also used her notoriety to bring awareness to Operation Blankets, a donation-based foundation that repurposes pillows and blankets for animal shelters across the country. In 2015, Young participated as a contestant on "Celebrity Jeopardy!" and won, donating her $50,000 earnings to Operation Blankets of Love. During the Obama administration, Young served as the Ambassador for The Trust for the National Mall alongside Chelsea Clinton.
Born in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina, Young graduated from Yale University with dual degrees in English and theater studies; she also holds a certificate from Oxford University in England. Young could attend and afford Yale University because of a privately donated scholarship; she now provides her own scholarship for current and prospective Yale Students.