Heartbroken to hear about the passing of my friend Ken Howard. He was a joy to work with as an actor and labor leader. A true force of nature.
-Melissa Gilbert, former SAG President
Having known Ken Howard for over 30 years and worked with him as an actor and as a member of our Foundation Board, I would like to express how deeply we will feel his loss. Ken did great work all his life - as an actor, as the president of our union, and for our Foundation. For more than four years, Ken served on our Board as an outspoken advocate for the emergency assistance, catastrophic health fund and scholarship programs for union members and their families in need of a leg up. He was also an ardent supporter of the Foundation’s free professional programs which help union members build their careers and develop their craft. Ken attended many Foundation fundraisers, events and meetings in order to support the mission and work of the SAG-AFTRA Foundation. He did all of this on his own time, without compensation or fanfare, but to be of service to his fellow union members. On behalf of our entire Board, staff, and the union performers we serve every day, our hearts go out to Ken’s wife Linda and his entire family from all of us at the Foundation.
-JoBeth Williams, SAG-AFTRA Foundation President
Today we pay tribute to a real shining star in Hollywood. Ken Howard was terrific in his craft as a SAG-AFTRA actor and labor leader.
-Thomas Perez, U.S. Secretary of Labor
Ken Howard was a friend and an impactful leader who dedicated himself to improving the lives of union workers and fighting for everyday people in our city. His commitment to supporting artists, and encouraging creativity in young people, helped countless Angelenos jump-start successful careers in the entertainment industry. His influence and work will live on, and we will miss him dearly.
-Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles
It was deeply sorrowing to learn about the passing of Ken Howard, a friend, gifted actor, and stalwart champion for creativity and artistic rights. On the screen, his talent was radiant and unforgettable. And as a leader, Ken was a unifier whose hard work and contributions will be enjoyed by many in the creative community for years to come. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.
-United States Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman, Motion Picture Association of America
We mourn the loss of SAG-AFTRA President Ken Howard, and we honor his tremendous leadership built on unwavering dedication to the members he represented. Ken was a unifier, a true professional and a powerful voice for working people. From his roles as Thomas Jefferson to Tip O'Neill to the White Shadow, he leaves an indelible legacy. He will be greatly missed.
-Richard Trumka, President, AFL-CIO
We are deeply saddened at the news of SAG-AFTRA President Ken Howard's passing yesterday. Ken was a leader during the difficult and important merger of the Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and he led with a vision of stability for the union members. Ken Howard was a strong leader, and this is an incredible loss to his family, SAG-AFTRA members and the industry as a whole. We support our sister union during this difficult time.
-Matthew D. Loeb, President, IATSE
The International Federation of Actors (FIA) and its 89 member unions are saddened by the passing of Ken Howard, President of SAG-AFTRA. We all met Ken back in 2009, soon after he was first elected to the SAG Presidency, and have been impressed ever since by his determination and commitment to improving the livelihood of his fellow performers, not just in the USA but also around the world. He was a man of strong convictions, both at a professional and at a personal level. With a determination to unite, he successfully led the historical SAG and AFTRA merger, one of his several remarkable achievements. He attended many of our international meetings, where he would always use the right word at the right time. He would listen much to and express real empathy for the struggles of fellow unions and performers from distant countries as if these were his own. Indeed they were, as Ken's sympathy for the wellbeing of professional performers transcended geographical boundaries. The true meaning of solidarity really resonated with him, inspiring everything he did. He was always keen to understand others and would always have time for anyone of us, no matter how busy his schedule was. Ken was an acclaimed actor, a visionary leader but, most of all, an extraordinary person and a dear friend for us all. His departure will be deeply regretted by our federation. On behalf of our membership worldwide, our deepest sympathies go to his wife and family as well as to all our colleagues at SAG-AFTRA.
-Dominick Luquer, General Secretary, International Federation of Actors