Lynn Whitfield Biography: Instagram, Age, Net Worth, Children, Parents, Wikipedia, Movie & TV Shows

Posted By Johnson Ajiboye

Lynn Whitfield is an award-winning actress who has starred in various television and film productions.

She is best known for portraying Josephine Baker in The Josephine Baker Story, which earned her an Emmy Award and a Golden Globe nomination.

She is also famous for her role as Lady Mae Greenleaf in the Oprah Winfrey Network series Greenleaf, which won her two NAACP Image Awards and a Gracie Award.


  • Full name: Lynn Butler-Smith
  • Other names: Lynn Whitfield
  • Date of birth: February 15, 1953
  • Age: 70 years old
  • Gender: Female
  • Place of birth: Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Actress
  • Height: 5 feet 3 inches (1.6 m)
  • Parents: Valeria Jean Butler (mother) and Valerian E. Smith (father)
  • Siblings: 3
  • Spouse: Vantile Whitfield (1974-1978), Brian Gibson (1990-1992)
  • Children: Grace Gibson (daughter)
  • Relationship status: Single
  • Net worth: $5 million

Early Life & Education

Lynn Whitfield, who turned 70 in 2023, was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on February 15, 1953.

She was the child of Valeria Jean Butler, the president of a housing finance agency, and Valerian E. Smith, a dentist.

She has three siblings: Valerian Butler-Smith, Shawne Langston, and Kimberlegh Butler-Smith.

She grew up in a middle-class family and attended Catholic schools. She became interested in acting early and participated in school plays and local theatre productions.

She graduated from Howard University in Washington, D.C., with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1975. She then moved to New York City to pursue her acting career.

Personal Life

Lynn Whitfield has been married twice and has one daughter. Her first marriage was to Vantile Whitfield, a director and playwright, in 1974.

They divorced in 1978. Her second marriage was to Brian Gibson, a British director, in 1990. They met on the set of The Josephine Baker Story, where Gibson directed Whitfield in her breakthrough role.

They had a daughter, Grace Gibson, who was born in 1991. Grace is also an actress and has appeared in films such as Black Nativity and All Eyez on Me.

Whitfield and Gibson divorced in 1992. Whitfield has also dated celebrities like Martin Lawrence and Arthur Ashe. She is currently single and lives in Los Angeles, California.


Lynn Whitfield has had a successful and diverse career in television and film. She started her career in theatre and appeared in several Off-Broadway and regional plays, such as For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow Is Enuf, The Great MacDaddy, and Showdown. She made her television debut in 1981 in the soap opera The Doctors.

She then appeared in various T.V. movies and series, such as Hill Street Blues, Cagney & Lacey, The Women of Brewster Place, and A Different World. She also had a recurring role as Jill Thomas in the sitcom Martin.

Her breakthrough role came in 1991, when she played Josephine Baker, the legendary jazz singer and dancer, in the HBO biopic The Josephine Baker Story.

She received critical acclaim and won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie. She also received a Golden Globe nomination and a NAACP Image Award for her performance. She became the first black actress to win an Emmy for a lead role.

She continued to star in various films and T.V. shows, such as A Thin Line Between Love and Hate, Eve’s Bayou, Stepmom, The Cheetah Girls, Madea’s Family Reunion, and The Wedding.

She also played the role of Brandi Web in the cult classic film Head of State opposite Chris Rock. She received several awards and nominations for her work, including a Black Reel Award, a Satellite Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award.

In 2016, she began playing the role of Lady Mae Greenleaf, the matriarch of a wealthy and influential family, in the Oprah Winfrey Network drama series Greenleaf.

She received rave reviews and won two NAACP Image Awards and a Gracie Award for her performance. She also co-produced the series, which ran for five seasons until 2020.

She is currently working on several projects, such as the Netflix comedy film The Perfect Find, the Amazon Prime Video thriller series The Underground Railroad, and the BET+ drama series The Ms. Pat Show.

Net Worth

Lynn Whitfield has an estimated net worth of $5 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

She has earned her wealth from her acting career and her producing and endorsement deals.

Social Media

  • Instagram: @mslynnwhitfield
  • Twitter: @MsLynnWhitfield


  • The Josephine Baker Story
  • Eve’s Bayou
  • Stepmom
  • Head of State
  • Madea’s Family Reunion
  • The Cheetah Girls
  • Greenleaf
  • The Perfect Find
  • The Underground Railroad
  • The Ms. Pat Show

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