James Ward III
Senior Manager, Communications, OWN
James Ward III was born and raised in Seattle, WA. His passion to be in the entertainment industry sprouted through acting at the age of four, and thankfully with the support of his family, James’ parents got him signed with an agent right away. He has since had the opportunity of acting professionally and joined the Screen Actors Guild at age 10. After diving in to the acting world via commercials, voice over and industrial videos, James discovered live theater through the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center (LHPAC). His LAPHC credits include starring in “The Soul of Beauty and the Beast” (Jacque) and “The Wiz with a Renaissance Swing” and “Grease! The Way We Do It” both as ensemble cast.
James received his Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from the University of Southern California. During his time studying at USC, their fall 2009 production of Toni Morrison’s "The Bluest Eye" for which he played the role of Soaphead Church, was nominated in three different categories for the 20th Annual Beverly Hills/Hollywood NAACP Theatre Awards. Additionally, James was Co-President of the student-founded organization called the Black Entertainment & Theatrical Association of which he and a fellow student produced USC’s first Diversity Showcase providing the opportunity for actors of different ethnic backgrounds to showcase their talents in front of industry professionals.
As James continues to pursue his career in the Los Angeles market as an Entertainment Entrepreneur, he currently works as the Senior Manager, Communications at OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, where he executes publicity campaigns for various OWN programming including David Makes Man, Greenleaf, Black Love, Love Is__ and Iyanla: Fix My Life. Previously, James earned his stripes as a Publicist in the Urban Division at a PR/Marketing agency where he worked with a team spearheading targeted publicity campaigns that reach African American audiences for major motion picture and television projects such as the launch of Empire, Underground, The Wiz Live!, Captain America: Civil War, Spectre 007, Central Intelligence, Kung Fu Panda 3, 22 Jump Street and many more.
James also believes, “to whom much is given, much is required.” With an understanding of this philosophy, James’ philanthropic work includes participating as a mentor in the USC Black Alumni Association’s Legacy Through Leadership Mentoring Program; and utilizing his skills as a PR expert for organizations supporting African Americans and the Black LGBTQ community in Hollywood. He recently received the Shadow and Act 2019 Rising Award as a “Behind the Scenes Star” alongside Oscar-winner Barry Jenkins (“Moonlight,” “If Beal Street Could Talk”) who received the Game-Changer Award.
James is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., loves rollercoasters, horseback riding, champagne brunch with friends and has golfed since the age of seven.