Wanda Witherspoon

Vice President, Public Affairs and Special Events

Wanda Witherspoon smiles

As Vice President of Public Affairs and Special Events, Wanda Witherspoon oversees all aspects of event development and production, community engagement experiences, the Sesame Workshop Speakers Bureau, and character appearances to elevate the brand and mission of the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street.

Witherspoon has more than 20 years of experience blending production and event expertise. She leads the organization’s Special Events group in producing live performances and stage shows, including Sesame Workshop’s Annual Benefit Dinner and participation in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. She also coordinates community engagement events highlighting Sesame Workshop’s social impact work around the world, while managing external partner and sponsor relationships and strategic planning for the group. Since joining the Workshop in 1999, she has overseen events for multi-city road tours and brand events elevating Sesame’s content, international co-productions, and global social impact work. 

In 2016, Witherspoon assumed management of the Sesame Workshop Speakers Bureau to elevate and approve speaker requests and to identify new opportunities to elevate Sesame Workshop's content and key initiatives through conferences, workshops, and trade shows. Under her leadership, Sesame has been featured at Skoll World Forum, Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity, the Milken Institute Global Conference, The Aspen Institute, The Atlantic Festival, the Global Philanthropy Forum, the WISE Summit, the first-ever Global Refugee Forum, high-level side events during the UN General Assembly, and more. 

In 2020, Witherspoon was appointed co-lead of an internal committee tasked with supporting Senior Leadership and Human Resources in focusing on matters regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion. In this role, she will guide the committee in identifying areas of concern and making recommendations to prompt dialogue, influence transformative progress, and offer lasting solutions to ensure continued staff development and representation through equity and inclusion. She recently joined the Workshop’s senior leadership Operations Team through an inaugural effort led by the President & CEO to broaden and diversify the voices that impact business decisions and operations.

Prior to joining Sesame Workshop, Witherspoon was a news producer for Fox Television, where she produced dramatic reenactments and news stories intended to help recover missing children nationwide. She began her career in promotions at Black Entertainment Television in Washington, DC and was a producer and editor at Arlington Community Television (now Arlington Independent Media) in Virginia. Witherspoon is a graduate of Marymount University, Arlington, with a B.A. in Mass Communications and Public Affairs.   

Contact for Speaking Engagements

Sesame Workshop Speakers Bureau

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