Anne Sward-Hansen is from Bronxville, New York, and graduated from Emerson College, in Boston. She pursued graduate studies at the University of Miami, in Coral Gable, Florida. While there she received the prestigious Irene Ryan Award at the American College Theatre Festival.
Sward-Hansen devoted most of her career to television and film, most notably 13 years on CBS As the World Turns. She served three terms as President of the Utah Branch of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and continues to sit on the SAG national Low Budget Committee, SAG Indie, and is the Vice President of the Utah Branch Council.
She is a leading film acting coach throughout the United States and is currently a faculty member of the Theatre and Media Arts Department at Brigham Young University. Sward-Hansen was the acting coach for Warner Brothers' Everwood and also coached in Robert Collier's Acting Studio in New York City. Throughout her teaching career, she has taught at the University of Miami, Cypress College in California, and at Utah Valley University. She also developed film acting course curricula for the Boys & Girls Clubs, BIA Indian Schools on reservations, and for the Kellogg Foundation Fellows Leadership Program in Washington, DC.
In 1987, she became the first chairman and a founding member of the American Indian College Fund. She currently is an Emeritus Trustee and in 2005 was presented the AICF Lifetime Achievement Award at the Lincoln Center in New York City.
In 2012, Sward-Hansen was featured in the new web-series Pretty Darn Funny, produced by BYU's TMA 378 class and directed by professor Jeff Parkin. She was also in the cast of 95ers: Echoes, which was directed by Tom Durham. Both Pretty Darn Funny and 95ers: Echoes were shown at the LDS Film Festival in 2013, at which Pretty Darn Funny won five Telly Awards. At the 2014 Filmed in Utah awards show, Pretty Darn Funny won awards for Best Ensemble, Best UTuber Channel, and Best Director (Jeffrey Parkin). Sward-Hansen stayed with Pretty Darn Funny in season 2.
Sward-Hansen was awarded Best Actress at the Filmed in Utah 2013 Awards for her performance in Proper Manors. In 2014, she played the role of Patricia in the film Favorite, which won an Honorable Mention at the LDS Film Festival.