(March 20, 1944- )
Born in Washington, District of Columbia
Birth name is Camille Olivia Hanks
Businesswoman, television production executive, author, lecturer, and philanthropist
Married then-aspiring comedian Bill Cosby in 1964, later the star of the popular television sitcom, The Cosby Show
Worked as his business manager in his career's early years, and would continue to do so for the next five decades, overseeing all philanthropic and financial matters
Co-directed her husband's concert film 'Bill Cosby: 49' (1987)
Produced two of her husband's albums through Geffen Records, 'Those of You with or Without Children, You'll Understand' (1986) and 'Oh, Baby!' (1991)
President of COC Productions, a film production company, and C&J Productions, a stage production company
Doctoral dissertation, 'Television's Imageable Influences: The Self-Perceptions of Young African-Americans' was published by The University Press of America (1994)
Collaborated with David C. Driskell on the book, 'The Other Side of Color: African American Art in the Collection of Camille O. and William H. Cosby Jr.' (2001)
Wrote the forewords for Thelma Williams' 'Our Family Table: Recipes And Food Memories From African-American Life Models' (2009), Dr. Michele R. Wright's 'Dear Success Seeker: Wisdom from Outstanding Women' (2009), and Edward Lewis' 'The Man from Essence: Creating a Magazine for Black Women' (2014)
Filed an emergency motion in federal court to stay or delay her deposition in a case of sexual misconduct involving her husband; a bid which was subsequently rejected by the court (Jan. 2016)
Why she might be annoying
She was active with Jesse Jackson's Operation PUSH and Rainbow Coalition.
Her husband has been known to dish about their (present) sex life in interviews.
Richard Pryor's widow, Jennifer Lee, accused her and her husband of looking down the nose at them on several occasions.
Some took issue with several comments she made relating her son's death to racism in America.
Ironically, complaints that her husband's sitcom didn't reflect the average black family stemmed from her talking Bill into making the Huxtables a middle-upper class family.
Her husband joked about her shrewd skills as a businesswoman by saying 'people would rather deal with me than with Camille. She's rough to deal with when it comes to my business!'
Many were skeptical as to how she could be her husband's business manager for close to 50 years and not have been remotely aware about any drugging accusations against him.
Many argued that she had a vested financial interest in keeping mum on her husband's various indiscretions. Insiders claimed that she was more concerned with the destruction of the 'Cosby legacy,' which she credited herself with making possible.
She blasted her husband's accusers in a public statement, asserting that they had consented to sex/drugs, and alluding to a conspiracy against Mr. Cosby (even comparing it to the University of Virginia rape hoax).
She lived in an almost blissful state of denial about her husband's activities, even as the number of accusers grew and as evidence became more available (including a deposition in which he admitted to giving Quaaludes to women he slept with).
A joint interview of her and her husband at the opening of an art exhibition went viral after Bill was caught off-camera intimidating an AP reporter for asking about his resurfaced rape allegations. Through the entire clip, she could be seen leaning away from him with a forced, contrived smile on her face (Nov. 2014).
Why she might not be annoying
Her father was a chemist at the US Army's Walter Reed General Hospital.
She is a descendant of Abe Lincoln on his mother's side, Nancy Hanks Lincoln (also making her a distant relative of Tom Hanks).
Oprah Winfrey called her 'a woman who inspires imitation.'
She is a loyal spouse (not to mention long-suffering and forgiving).
She was the model for the iconic supermom Claire Huxtable (and may have had a say in choosing Phylicia Rashad for the part).
She and her husband donated a staggering $20 million to Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia (1989).
By 2000, she and her husband had donated well over $75 million to various black colleges, universities, high schools, and community centers.
She was presented with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Howard University (1987).
She was presented with the Candace Award by the National Coalition of 100 Black Women at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (1992).
She probably has more honorary degrees than her husband does (as of 2016, unless they're restored to him at a later date barring decriminating evidence).
Her 27 year-old son was shot dead while fixing a flat tire off the San Diego freeway (Jan. 16, 1997).
Given how the national dialogue on race has evolved since her son's murder, it is almost inconceivable that a grieving mother would be attacked for criticizing race relations in America in such a way.
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