‘Abbott Elementary’ creator and star Quinta Brunson honored by Philadelphia City Council

The Philly native says she's "speechless" after the city passes a resolution to celebrate and honor her innovation in the ABC hit series.

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Social media star turned executive producer Quinta Brunson got honored by the city of Philadelphia for creating the ABC hit series Abbott Elementary.

The show follows the lives of school faculty as they toggle their love for teaching while being employed at one of the worst schools public schools in the country.

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Quinta Brunson attends the 2019 Pre-Emmy Party hosted by Entertainment Weekly and L’Oreal Paris at Sunset Tower Hotel in Los Angeles on Friday, September 20, 2019. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Entertainment Weekly)

The Philly native— who writes, produces, and stars in the mockumentary — said she was inspired by her own experiences and wanted to make a workplace comedy that was relatable to audiences.

“Today, @PHLCouncil passed my resolution to honor and celebrate trailblazing writer, actor, comedian, and Philadelphia native, Quinta Brunson,” wrote councilmember At-Large for the Philadelphia City Council, Helen Gym, who proposed the resolution that passed on Thursday.

Brunson’s rise to critical acclaim is one for the books.

The creator first began gaining notoriety in 2014 after her Instagram comedy skit, The Girl Who’s Never Been On A Nice Date went viral on social media.

Brunson made the skit into a series before joining Buzzfeed to produce video content directed for young adults.

After leaving Buzzfeed in 2018, she was featured in several other television and web series including the animated series Lazor Wulf and HBO’s A Black Lady Sketch Show.

In 2021, her series originally titled Harrity Elementary was picked up by ABC network and premiered on the network on December 7.

The star-studded show, cast a slew of familiar faces including Everybody Hates Chris’ Tyler James Williams, Moesha’s Sheryl Lee Ralph, and comedian Janelle James.

“I wanted to make the audience fall in love with the workplace, and I wanted the comedy to feel like you, the audience member, were working at Abbott, too,” said Brunson to the Washington Post, about the creation of the show.

The sitcom made ABC history as the first comedy debut to quadruple ratings since its original airing, and it touts an impressive 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Quinta Brunson as Janine Teagues in “Abbott Elementary” (Credit: ABC)

In addition, Brunson says she uses the comedic style of the show to talk about real-life issues that Black teachers and children face in underfunded classrooms.

“I think all the funding that goes to everything else should equally go to our schools,” she said in an interview with Education Week.

“I just don’t understand why it doesn’t. The fact that teachers need anything, the fact that wish lists exist? I get it. It’s cute. But I’m just like teachers should never want for anything. It’s a public service. Who are we without teachers,” she adds.

“Abbott Elementary brings to primetime television a loving ode to Philadelphia educators, school children and their families as well as a call to action to fund and support our youth and our public schools, and for that, this Council body is both grateful and inspired,” reads the resolution posted by Gym.

The resolution was co-sponsored by nine out of the 17 council members.

“Wow Helen, I have no idea what to say,” said Brunson on Twitter in response to the honor. “Thank you so much. Pretty speechless over here. I’m over here supporting fair funding in Philadelphia and all the work you do!!!”

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