Glynn Turman

Emmy-winning actor Glynn Turman landed his first role as a 12-year-old, playing Sidney Poitier's son in the iconic stage play, "A Raisin in The Sun". He parlayed that career into television and films and is best known for playing pivotal roles in series such as 'A Different World,' 'The Wire' and 'How To Get Away With Murder." Lately he has again received critical acclaim for his role of Doctor Senator in the FX series, 'Fargo.' His longtime fans still refer to him as "Preach," the role he played in the coming-of-age 1975 classic film, "Cooley High."

Born and raised in New York City it is sometimes hard to imagine that the sometimes director of stage productions has also been a real-life cowboy. He says from as long as he could remember, he has had a fascination with horses.

An accomplished horseman and rodeo champion off-screen, he and his wife, Jo-Ann, co-founded and direct a free western-style summer camp, "Camo Gid D Up," for inner-city and at-risk youth since 1992. He credits that attending youth camps as a kid saved him from juvenile delinquency.

In 1999, Glynn Turman won the state's Regional Team Roping Finals and placed in the top 5 in the National US Team Roping Champion Finals in Oklahoma City. In November 2011 Glynn was inducted into the Western Heritage Multi-Cultural Museum's Hall of Fame in Ft. Worth Texas. And this year for Juneteenth he saw his lifelong work to bring the Black Rodeo to television realized on CBS.

Glynn has passed his rodeo legacy down to his family, including his granddaughter Melinda who appears here with him.

Glynn Turman

Melinda Siegel

Melinda Siegel

My grandfather, Glynn Turman, influenced me to ride horses at a very young age. He owns a cowboy western ranch and horses. As early as a baby, and on-ward, I attended the all-Black Bill Pickett Rodeo in Los Angeles. I watched Black cowboys and Black cowgirls compete from all over the nation, including Black cowboys/girls from Compton. Around 12 years old I became more interested in learning how to become a real cowgirl among the heavily male-dominated sport. My grandfather taught all his grandkids to ride and handle a horse. My brother and I really took the most interest.

Eventually I learned the art of teaching horseback riding to underserved youth as a Junior Counselor for Camp Gid-D-Up, a non-profit summer camp for underserved youth founded by my grandparents. Inspired and curious by the skills and transformation horses had on so many lives I decided to focus my high school senior project on the history of the Black cowboy, something we never learned about in school.

I earned my Bachelor's degree in Media Studies from Cal State University in 2011. During that time, I spent many weekends at the ranch navigating miles of riding trails in the Angeles Forest with my grandfather. In 2014, I collaborated with my grandfather, and we hosted a summer long Cattle sorting event at his ranch. The event was a huge success and became a popular activity among the community and fellow equestrians.

In 2018, I completed my Master in Science degree in School Counseling. Today, I work as a school counselor at a school focused on the performing arts. There I continue my mission to support our talented students and their families, to ensure they reach their goals and pursue their dreams for the future.

I'm a wife to my husband, Garrett Siegel, and mother to my 1 and half year-old daughter, Zoey. As parents we are passionate about nature and the positive influence it has brought to our lives. Earlier this summer, Zoey attended her first rodeo at the 37th annual Bill Pickett Rodeo in Las Vegas, Nevada. For the first time in history the all-Black Rodeo was aired on national television on Juneteenth. Our daughter loves horses and really enjoys watching the rodeo!

Passing on the legacy of the American Black Cowboy is very important to me. The life lessons I have gained working with horses has taught me humility, respect and the ability to be vulnerable. You learn quickly that too much ego and pride will land you in the dirt! I am blessed to represent a secret part of American history by being a modern-day Black cowgirl.