Ava DuVernay

Birth Name: Ava Marie DuVernay

Place of Birth: Long Beach, Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: August 24, 1972

Ethnicity: African-American, Louisiana Creole [African, French], distant Haitian and Belgian

Ava DuVernay is an American film director, producer, screenwriter, film marketer, and film distributor.

She was born to Darlene and Joseph Marcel DuVernay III. She was raised by her mother and stepfather, Murray Maye, whom Ava considers to be her father. Murray was from Lowndes County, Alabama, and was the son of Cornelia and Percy Devon Maye.

Ava’s ancestry is African-American and Louisiana Creole (which consists of African and French).

A DNA test whose results were displayed on the show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2017) stated that Ava’s genetic ancestry is:

*57.3% African
*41.5% European

Among Ava’s paternal ancestors is Jacques Henry Glaudin, a white man, of French descent, who was born, c. 1779, in Haiti, and his wife, Magdeleine Clémence Auger, who was of mixed race background. The two left Haiti during the slave revolt of the 1790s, and lived in Cuba, before settling in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Ava’s paternal grandfather was Joseph Marcel DuVernay II (the son of Joseph Marcel DuVernay and Jeanne Eulalia Staes). Ava’s grandfather Joseph was born in Louisiana. Ava’s great-grandfather Joseph was the son of Frank Louis DuVernay and Victoria Frilot.

Ava’s paternal grandmother was Naomi Veronica Lockett (the daughter of Cornelius Lockett and Octavia Smith). Naomi was born in Louisiana.

Ava’s maternal grandfather was William Marshall Sexton (the son of L. Z. Sexton).

Sources: Genealogy of Ava’s paternal grandfather, Joseph Marcel DuVernay II (focusing on his father’s side) – https://www.wikitree.com

Ava’s paternal grandfather, Joseph Marcel DuVernay II, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Ava’s paternal grandmother, Naomi Veronica Lockett, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Photo by Debby Wong/Bigstock.com

2 Responses

  1. andrew says:

    Jeanne Eulalia Staes had Belgian ancestry

    *Ava DuVernay and Suzanne Malveaux are 6th cousins, through their shared ancestors Claude Frilot and Rosette Françoise Boutte

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