William Allen Young is an American actor best known for his role as Frank Mitchell on UPN's Moesha and directing a few episodes of the show, and made a guest appearance on UPN's The Parkers as Frank Mitchell. His other television credits include The Day After, Matlock, Babylon 5, CBS's JAG, Knots Landing, The Jeffersons, and The Women of Brewster Place, among other shows. He portrayed a recurring character on CBS's CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and a different recurring character, Joseph Ratner, on CBS's CSI: Miami. William currently plays Dr. Rollie Guthrie on the CBS medical drama Code Black.
Life and career
Young was born in Washington, D.C. but grew up in South Central, Los Angeles, during the Civil Rights Movement. One of seven children, he was inspired by his mother,Mother Joan Walker of California Southwest Jurisdiction, a high-school dropout who worked as a maid before returning to school at night to get her diploma and a nursing license, which led to a career in the medical profession.
His acting career includes starring roles in the Academy Award-nominated film, A Soldier's Story, and in Women of Brewster Place, The Atlanta Child Murders, Simple Justice, Sins, Lock Up, and In the Belly of the Beast, and the award-winning Lifetime series Any Day Now. Millions of viewers still recognize him as Frank Mitchell, the tough-but-loving father, on the hit TV show, Moesha, or as Chief Judge Ratner on CSI: Miami. William has received critical praise for his stage performances in New York and Los Angeles., and he has performed abroad in Africa, Austria, France, Italy, London, Sri Lanka, and Russia. His film project, District 9, filmed on location in South Africa, was released in August 2009. He also guest starred on the 6th season of Sister, Sister. He has also recently starred as Harry Wentz on the Disney Channel Original Series Good Luck Charlie. In 2013, Young reunited with Moesha co-star Brandy Norwood on the season six episode, "The Blueprint" on the television show The Game.
He is a USC graduate and former #1 College Speaker in the Nation for two consecutive years, when he led the Trojan Debate Squad to a National Championship. He holds a master's degree in Sociolinguistics, a bachelor's degree in Rhetoric & Debate, and has lectured at major colleges and universities nationwide. He is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity.
He is the founder/president of the non-profit Young Center for Academic and Cultural Enrichment.
He is the recipient of the NAACP Outstanding Social Achievement Award, USC Black Alumni Association Thomas Kilgore, Jr. Service Award, California Lottery Association Hero in Education Award, Black Hollywood Education Resource Center President's Icon Award; Arts Council for the Disabled Humanitarian Service Award, and National Organization of Women at Work Man of the Year Award. He was recently inducted into the African-American Hall of Education and deemed an Ambassador of Goodwill by former President Bill Clinton.