Born in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina, Young graduated from Yale University with dual degrees in English and Theater Studies; she also holds a certificate from England’s University of Oxford. Young was financially able to attend Yale because of a privately donated scholarship; thanks to Scandal, she is now able to provide an annual scholarship for current Yale Students.
Young is best known for her award-winning role as ‘President Mellie Grant’ on the ABC/Shonda Rhimes series SCANDAL.
Young’s performance as the politically ambitious First Lady who becomes President earned her much critical praise including: a Best Supporting Actress statue from the Critics’ Choice Awards, Entertainment Weekly’s 25 Best Characters on TV, #15 on Entertainment Weekly’s 50 Best TV Scenes of the Year, NY Post’s Top 10 TV Actors, and a TV Guide Magazine’s Fan Favorite Award. Rolling Stone Magazine described Young’s portrayal as “the most badass first lady in TV history” and E!’s resident TV critic described Young as her “favorite character on TV ever.”