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Berg, Gertrude (03 October 1899–14 September 1966), actress, writer, and producer of radio and television programs, was born Gertrude Edelstein in the Harlem district of New York City, the daughter of Jacob Edelstein, a Catskills resort hotel owner, and Diana Netta Goldstein, a bookkeeper and hotel kitchen manager. She was educated in public schools and showed interest in acting as a child, performing comic skits at her father’s hotel. As a teenager, she took several extension courses in playwriting at Columbia University. In 1918 she married Lewis Berg, a mechanical engineer, whose work took the couple to a sugar refinery in Reserve, Louisiana. In 1921 they returned to New York, where they would live for the rest of their lives. The couple had two children....

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Leonard, Sheldon (22 February 1907–10 January 1997), performer, director, producer, and writer, primarily for television, radio, and film, was born Sheldon Leonard Bershad in New York City, the only child of Frank Bershad, a salesman, and Anna Levitt Bershad, an immigrant from Russia whose father had been a scribe to the Romanoff court. The family lived in the polyglot Morrisania section of the Bronx except for a period of three years during Leonard's early teens, when they lived in Belleville, New Jersey. In his autobiography Leonard describes Belleville as a "WASPy suburb" that made him self-conscious of the urban working-class accent and mannerisms that would become his trademarks as a performer as well as his Jewish background....

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Levinson, Richard Leighton (07 August 1934–12 March 1987), writer, creator, and producer of television programs, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of William Levinson, a businessman, and Georgia Harbert. He received a B.S. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1956 and served in the U.S. Army during 1957–1958. Levinson developed a lifelong partnership with William Link, his boyhood friend and college roommate. The two began collaborating on class skits and mystery stories as junior high school students. Levinson continued his personal and professional alliance with Link for over four decades....

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Levy, David (02 January 1913–25 January 2000), advertising and broadcasting executive, television producer, and writer, was one of twin sons born to Benjamin Levy, an accountant, and Lillian Potash Levy of Philadelphia. He excelled as a student, especially in mathematics and writing, both of which would remain lifelong pursuits. An economics major at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, he received a B.S. degree in 1934 and an M.B.A. in 1935....

Article

Serling, Rod (25 December 1924–28 June 1975), television writer and producer, was born Rodman Edward Serling in Syracuse, New York, the son of Samuel Serling, a grocer and butcher, and Esther Cooper. In 1926 Serling’s family joined a growing Jewish community in Binghamton, New York. As editor of ...

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Todman, William Selden (31 July 1916–29 July 1979), radio and television writer, director, and producer, was born in New York City, the son of Frederick Simpson Todman, an accountant, and Helena Diana Orlowitz. Todman received a bachelor of science in 1938 from Johns Hopkins University and earned a bachelor of arts from New York University in 1941. While at New York University, he was employed as a freelance radio writer and producer for several New York stations, and in 1941 he was offered a permanent position with WABC radio. During his tenure with that station, Todman wrote for and directed “The Connee Boswell Show,” “Anita Ellis Sings,” and “Treasury Salute Dramas.”...