Serinda Swan stars as a tough-as-nails undercover D.E.A. agent on USA’s new crime drama Graceland—a woman, she says, with “a big heart but [who] does not take shit from anyone. I love that she’s capable physically, but she relies on her mental ability first. I did gymnastics for more than 10 years and I love taking fight classes for roles, but my parents always taught me knowledge is power.”
We decided to put that knowledge to the test and tasked Swan with taking our DuJour Questionnaire. Read on to find out about the time she was arrested and thrown in jail and how she’d spend her last day on earth.
What was the best day of your life?
I cycled across Cambodia for a charity that brings awareness to sex trafficking, and I met the most amazing six-year-old girl who told us her story. I’ve always been a little shy about the idea of being a “celebrity,” but in that moment I realized that I could use it as a platform. It was an aha moment.
When I was 21, I got pulled over by a cop—he took my license and registration and then disappeared for a half hour. All of a sudden, two more officers showed up and told me they had a warrant for my arrest! I was handcuffed, and they brought me to the worst possible prison in Vancouver. I was in jail, bawling, and had no idea what was going on. Eventually, they asked me if I knew why I was arrested. I didn’t. They said, “You have over $500 in unpaid parking tickets.” I spent eight hours in jail while they processed my paperwork.
If you could spend a day in someone else’s shoes, who would it be?
President Obama. I’d want to get a grasp of what’s really happening behind the scenes. I’d go into every single file and read them all!
What’s your favorite hour of the day?
If I’m awake for it, 6 am to 7 am. It’s quiet and fresh and full of possibility—the calm before everyone gets sucked into their social lives. I love that time. It seems sacred to me.
If you could relive any day in history, what would it be?
The day that women got the right to vote.
Did you break a sweat today?
Not yet. But I plan on it. I took SoulCycle for the first time yesterday, and I’m addicted. Molly Sims and Tyra Banks were in my class!
If you could wear a uniform every day, what would it be?
Boyfriend jeans, a white T-shirt, a pair of dunks or a nice flat loafer, and a boyfriend sweater.
I didn’t want to today, but I _________.
Woke up early. It was only 9:30 am, but technically that’s 6:30 am to me—I’m in New York but on West Coast time.
What was the best conversation you had today?
This one! I’m in a hotel by myself, so I really don’t have anyone to talk to.
How would you spend your last day on Earth?
On the top of a mountain with everyone that I love.
Hair & Makeup by Andrea Tiller
Photography by Liz Rosa