Piper Kerman

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Piper Kerman
Piper Kerman BBF 2010 Shankbone.jpg
Kerman at the 2010 Brooklyn Book Festival
Born Piper Eressea Kerman
(1969-09-28) September 28, 1969 (age 44)
Boston, Massachusetts,[1] United States
Alma mater Smith College
Occupation Writer, author, memoirist
Notable work(s) Orange Is the New Black
Spouse(s) Larry Smith (m. 2006)

Piper Eressea Kerman[2] is an American memoirist whose experiences in prison provided the basis for the comedy-drama series Orange Is the New Black.

Kerman was born on September 28, 1969 in Boston[1] into a family with many doctors, attorneys and educators[1] and graduated from Smith College[3] in 1992. A self-described WASP,[3] in 1993 she entered into a romantic relationship with a woman who dealt heroin for a West African kingpin.[4][5] Kerman laundered money for the drug operation.[4]

In 1998, Kerman was indicted for money laundering and drug trafficking and subsequently pleaded guilty.[4] Beginning in 2004, she served 13 months of a 15-month sentence at FCI Danbury, a minimum security prison located in Danbury, Connecticut.[6]

At present, Kerman works as a communications strategist for nonprofits.

Kerman published her best-selling memoir about her experiences in prison, Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison, in 2010. An adaptation of the same name by Jenji Kohan, the Emmy award-winning creator of Weeds, debuted in July 2013 on Netflix. Kerman's analogue on the series ("Piper Chapman") is played by Taylor Schilling. The program was renewed for a second season before season 1 premiered.[7]

Personal life[edit]

On May 21, 2006, Kerman married Larry Smith, an editor.[2]




  1. ^ a b c Lee Ball, Aimee (August 2, 2013). "Prison Life, Real and Onscreen". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ a b "Piper Kerman and Larry Smith". The New York Times. May 21, 2006. 
  3. ^ a b "The Woman Behind 'Orange Is The New Black'". 90.9 WBUR. July 29, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c Humphrey, Michael (March 25, 2010). "Ex-Convict Piper Kerman on Her Hot New Memoir, Orange Is the New Black". New York Magazine. Retrieved May 8, 2010. 
  5. ^ Segura, Liliana (April 1, 2010). "Orange Is the New Black: A Year in a Women's Prison". Truthout. Retrieved May 8, 2010. 
  6. ^ "What's a Nice Blonde Like Me Doing in Prison?", Slate, Jessica Grose, April 8, 2010
  7. ^ Nellie Andreeva (June 27, 2013), Netflix Renews 'Orange Is The New Black' For Second Season 

External links[edit]