Gail Strickland

Last updated

Gail Strickland
Years active1966–2008
Neil Baker
(m. 1990)

Gail Strickland is an American actress who had prominent supporting roles in such films as The Drowning Pool (1975), Bound for Glory (1976), Who'll Stop the Rain (1978), Norma Rae (1979), and Protocol (1984), and appeared regularly on various network television shows.


Life and career

Strickland was born in Birmingham, Alabama, one of five children, to Theodosia and Lynn Strickland, who owned a large tire dealership. [1] She married Neil Baker, and they have a daughter together named Maisy. [2]

In 1973, Strickland appeared as Sister Ann in the season-four episode, "Almost a Nun's Story", on The Mary Tyler Moore Show . She had a memorable appearance on the television series M*A*S*H as Captain Helen Whitfield, a nurse in an ongoing battle with alcoholism. She appeared as Courtney, Jerry's love interest, in the episodes titled "Jerry Robinson Crusoe" (3.13) and “My Boy Guillermo” (4.19) of The Bob Newhart Show. She appeared in the pilot episode of the television series Night Court as the public defender. She also guest-starred in the Cagney & Lacey episode "Suffer the Children" season one, episode four. Strickland played a struggling rancher's daughter in the 1987 Highway to Heaven episode "A Dream of Wild Horses", alongside legendary actor Richard Farnsworth. She played nurse practitioner Marilyn McGrath in the 1988 TV series HeartBeat . This was one of the earliest portrayals of a lesbian character on American network television.

Strickland appeared in 11 episodes of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman from 1993–94 as the character Olive Davis. She guest-starred in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Paradise", as the character Alixus. In 1994-95, she appeared as Mrs. Landis of Doubleday in the Seinfeld season-six episodes "The Chaperone" and "The Switch". She appeared on the U.S. Navy series JAG first-season episode "War Crimes" as Ambassador Bartlett, the U.S. ambassador to Peru. Strickland also played Esther MacInerney, the wife of A.J. MacInerney (Martin Sheen), chief of staff for President Andrew Shepherd (Michael Douglas), in the 1995 movie The American President . She played Dr. Rene Spielman on ER season six, episode six, "The Peace of Wild Things".

Strickland was a cast member in the brief run of the 2002 CBS television series First Monday , playing a Supreme Court justice.



1975 The Drowning Pool Mavis Kilbourne
1976 Bittersweet Love Roz
1976 Bound for Glory Pauline
1977 One on One B.J. Rudolph
1977The GatheringPeggy Thornton
1978 Who'll Stop the Rain Charmian
1979 Norma Rae Bonnie Mae
1983 Uncommon Valor Helen Rhodes
1983LiesJessica Brenner
1984 Protocol Mrs. St. John
1986 Hyper Sapien: People from Another Star Myrna King
1991 The Man in the Moon Marie Foster
1993 Three of Hearts Yvonne
1994 When a Man Loves a Woman Pam
1994Last Time OutBecky Davis
1995 How to Make an American Quilt The Mrs.
1995 The American President Esther MacInerney
2008 My Apocalypse Victoria Eastman


1969 Dark Shadows Dorcas Trilling"1.751", "1.766"
1973 The Mary Tyler Moore Show Sister Ann Hutchins"Almost a Nun's Story"
1974 Barnaby Jones Susan Taylor"Friends Till Death"
1974 Police Story Julie Keegan"Country Boy"
1974 Hawaii Five-O Elena Lewis / Forbes"Killer at Sea", "How to Steal a Masterpiece"
1974–75 The Bob Newhart Show Courtney Simpson"Jerry Robinson Crusoe", "My Boy Guillermo"
1975 Harry O Laura Mayo"Silent Kill"
1975 Ellery Queen Gail Stevens"Too Many Suspects"
1975My Father's HousePaulaTV film
1975 The Rookies Beverly Shore"The Voice of Thunder"
1976 Kojak Monica"Justice Deferred"
1976The Dark Side of InnocenceHeatherTV film
1977 Westside Medical Aileen Baker"The Devil & the Deep Blue Sea"
1977A Love Affair: The Eleanor and Lou Gehrig StoryDorothyTV film
1977 The Gathering PeggyTV film
1978 The President's Mistress Gwen BowersTV film
1978 Lou Grant Liz Harrison"Scandal"
1978Ski Lift to DeathVicki GordonTV film
1979Letters from FrankMarleneTV film
1979 The Gathering, Part II PeggyTV film
1980King CrabVickyTV film
1980 Rape and Marriage: The Rideout Case Jean ChristensenTV film
1981A Matter of Life and DeathMary CogginsTV film
1981 M*A*S*H Capt. Helen Whitfield"Bottoms Up"
1981 Walking Tall Lynn Hudson"Deadly Impact"
1981 Darkroom Helen"Siege of 31 August"
1982 Trapper John, M.D. Dr. Curtis"Doctors and Other Strangers"
1982 Alice Julia Roberts"Give My Regrets to Broadway"
1982 My Body, My Child AdeleTV film
1982Eleanor, First Lady of the WorldAnna RooseveltTV film
1982 The Six of Us Sally Benjamin-TreeTV film
1982 ABC Afterschool Special Mrs. Watson"Amy & the Angel"
1982Life of the Party: The Story of BeatriceAbbieTV film
1982, 1984 Hill Street Blues Gail Kennedy"Invasion of the Third World Body Snatchers", "The Other Side of Oneness"
1982, 1984 Cagney & Lacey Ruth Dawes / Mrs. Tanton"Suffer the Children", "Fathers & Daughters"
1983 Starflight: The Plane That Couldn't Land Nancy GilliamTV film
1983 Hardcastle and McCormick Agatha 'Aggy' Wainwright"Flying Down to Rio"
1984 Night Court Sheila Gardiner"All You Need Is Love"
1984 Family Ties Dorothy Canell"Ladies' Man"
1984 Emerald Point N.A.S. Dr. RobardsRecurring role
1984 Fame Becky Guest"The Ballad of Ray Claxton"
1985 Dallas Veronica Robinson"Winds of War", "Shattered Dreams", "Terms of Estrangement"
1985On Our WayMelindaTV film
1985–86 The Insiders Alice WestMain role
1986 Spenser: For Hire Mildred Frances"She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not"
1986–87 What a Country! Principal Joan CourtneyMain role (season 1)
1987 CBS Schoolbreak Special Kay Webb"An Enemy Among Us"
1987 Highway to Heaven Billie Harwood"A Dream of Wild Horses"
1987 Murder, She Wrote Kate Hollander"Steal Me a Story"
1988–89 Heartbeat Marilyn McGrath, N.P.Main role
1991 Civil Wars Lisa Wharton"The Pound and the Fury"
1991 WIOU Beatrice Hudson"Three Women and a Baby", "One Flew Over the Anchor Desk"
1992 The Burden of Proof Fiona CawleyTV miniseries
1992SpiesMrs. MillsTV film
1993 Silent Cries Roberta HamptonTV film
1993 Law & Order Ellen Gorham"Promises to Keep"
1993 Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman Olive DavisRecurring role (season 1)
1993RememberAmandaTV film
1994 Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Alixus"Paradise"
1994 Murder, She Wrote Edith Peabody"To Kill a Legend"
1994–95 Seinfeld Ms. Landis"The Chaperone", "The Switch"
1994–1998 Melrose Place Katherine AndrewsRecurring role (seasons 2–7)
1995 A Mother's Prayer RuthTV film
1995 JAG Ambassador Bartlett"War Cries"
1997 Walker, Texas Ranger Dr. Janet Monroe"Forgotten People"
1997 The Pretender Grace Carter-Welman"Over the Edge"
1998 Profiler Melinda Moscone"Birthright"
1998 Michael Hayes Rose"Imagine: Parts 1 & 2"
1998Life of the Party: The Pamela Harriman Story Betsey Cushing Roosevelt Whitney TV film
1999 Chicago Hope Shirley Fleming"Playing Through"
1999 Providence Evelyn Lombard"You Can't Hurry Love"
1999 ER Dr. Renee Spielman"The Peace of Wild Things"
2002 First Monday Justice Deborah SzwarkMain role

Related Research Articles

<i>The Muppet Show</i> Variety television show created by Jim Henson

The Muppet Show is a sketch comedy television series created by Jim Henson and featuring the Muppets. The series originated as two pilot episodes produced by Henson for ABC in 1974 and 1975. While neither episode was moved forward as a series and other networks in the United States rejected Henson's proposals, British producer Lew Grade expressed enthusiasm for the project and agreed to co-produce The Muppet Show for the British channel ATV. Five seasons, totalling 120 episodes, were broadcast on ATV and other ITV franchises in the United Kingdom and in later first-run syndication in the US from 1976 to 1981. The programme was produced and recorded at ATV Elstree Studios, England.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mike Farrell</span> American actor

Michael Joseph Farrell Jr. is an American actor, best known for his role as Captain B.J. Hunnicutt on the television series M*A*S*H (1975–83). Farrell was a producer of Patch Adams (1998) starring Robin Williams, and starred in the television series Providence (1999–2002). He is also an activist and public speaker for various political causes.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Loretta Swit</span> American actress

Loretta Jane Swit is an American stage and television actress known for her character roles. Swit is best known for her portrayal of Major Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan on M*A*S*H, for which she won two Emmy Awards.

Georgina Parker is an Australian television soap actress and has also appeared in film and theatre. She is a double Gold Logie winner, best known for her acting roles in Australian soap operas; as Lucy Gardiner in A Country Practice; as Theresa "Terri" Sullivan in All Saints; and as Roo Stewart in Home and Away. Parker is the second actress to play Roo Stewart.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jane Leeves</span> English actress

Jane Elizabeth Leeves is an English actress. Leeves played Daphne Moon on the NBC television sitcom Frasier from 1993 until 2004, for which she was nominated for an Emmy Award and a Golden Globe Award. She also played Joy Scroggs on TV Land's sitcom Hot in Cleveland.

<i>Empty Nest</i> American television sitcom

Empty Nest is an American television sitcom that aired for seven seasons on NBC from October 8, 1988, to April 29, 1995. The series, which was created as a spin-off of The Golden Girls by creator and producer Susan Harris, starred Richard Mulligan as recently widowed pediatrician Dr. Harry Weston, whose two adult daughters return home to live with him.

<i>Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman</i> American television series 1993-98

Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman is an American Western drama television series created and executive produced by Beth Sullivan and starring Jane Seymour, who plays Dr. Michaela Quinn, a physician who leaves Boston in search of adventure in the Old West and settles in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Gail Edwards</span> American former actress

Gail June Edwards is an American former actress. She is known for her roles as Dot Higgins in ABC's It's a Living, Sharon LeMeure in NBC's Blossom, and Vicky Larson in ABC's Full House.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Donna Pescow</span> American actress

Donna Gail Pescow is an American film and television actress and director. She is known for her roles as Annette in the 1977 film Saturday Night Fever, Angie Falco Benson in the 1980s sitcom Angie, Donna Garland in the sitcom Out of This World and Eileen Stevens in the Disney Channel sitcom Even Stevens.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Lee Meriwether</span> American actress and former model

Lee Ann Meriwether is an American actress, former model, and the winner of the Miss America 1955 pageant. She has appeared in many films and television shows, notably as Betty Jones, the title character's secretary and daughter-in-law in the 1970s crime drama Barnaby Jones starring Buddy Ebsen. The role earned her two Golden Globe Award nominations in 1975 and 1976, and an Emmy Award nomination in 1977. She is also known for her portrayal of Catwoman, replacing Julie Newmar in the film version of Batman (1966), and for a co-starring role on the science fiction series The Time Tunnel. Meriwether had a recurring role as Ruth Martin on the daytime soap opera All My Children until the end of the series in September 2011.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jorge Garcia</span> American actor and comedian

Jorge Garcia is an American actor and comedian. He first came to public attention with his performance as Hector Lopez on the television show Becker, but subsequently became best known for his portrayal of Hugo "Hurley" Reyes in the television series Lost from 2004 to 2010. He starred in the Fox television series Alcatraz and played a minor character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. He starred as Jerry Ortega on Hawaii Five-0 and can be seen in the Netflix original movie The Ridiculous 6. Garcia also appeared on the cover of Weezer's 2010 album Hurley in a close-up shot from a photo he took with vocalist Rivers Cuomo.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ken Kercheval</span> American actor (1935-2019)

Kenneth Marine Kercheval was an American actor, best known for his role as Cliff Barnes on the television series Dallas and its 2012 revival.

<i>Diagnosis: Murder</i> American action-mystery-comedy-medical crime drama television series (1993–2001)

Diagnosis: Murder is an American action-comedy-mystery-medical crime drama television series starring Dick Van Dyke as Dr. Mark Sloan, a medical doctor who solves crimes with the help of his son Steve, a homicide detective played by Van Dyke's real-life son Barry. The series began as a spin-off of Jake and the Fatman, became a series of three television films, and then a weekly television series that debuted on CBS on October 29, 1993. Joyce Burditt wrote the episode in Jake and the Fatman and is listed here as the creator of the spin off series.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Gail O'Grady</span> American actress

Gail Ann O'Grady, an American actress and producer, is best known for her roles on television. Her roles include Donna Abandando in the ABC police drama NYPD Blue, and Helen Pryor in the NBC drama series American Dreams. O'Grady is also well known for her lead roles in a number of television movies. She has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy Awards three times.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Anne Francis</span> American actress (1930–2011)

Anne Francis was an American actress known for her ground-breaking roles in the science-fiction film Forbidden Planet (1956) and the television action-drama series Honey West (1965–1966). Forbidden Planet marked a first in color, big-budget, science-fiction-themed motion pictures. Nine years later, Francis challenged female stereotypes in Honey West, in which she played a perky blonde private investigator who was as quick with body slams as witty one-liners. She earned a Golden Globe Award and Emmy Award nomination for her performance.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jeanette Nolan</span> American actress (1911–1998)

Jeanette Nolan was an American actress. Nominated for four Emmy Awards, she had roles in the television series The Virginian (1962–1971) and Dirty Sally (1974), and in films such as Macbeth (1948).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Skip Homeier</span> American actor

George Vincent Homeier, known professionally as Skip Homeier, was an American actor who started his career at the age of eleven and became a child star.

Stephanie Hodge is an American actress and stand-up comedian, known for her roles as Nurse Sandy Miller in the NBC sitcom Nurses from 1991 to 1993, and as Jennie Malloy on the WB sitcom Unhappily Ever After from 1995 to 1998.

<i>HeartBeat</i> (1988 TV series) American medical drama television series

HeartBeat is an American medical drama television series that premiered on ABC on March 23, 1988, and ran for two seasons.


  1. Toepfer, Susan; Hutchings, David (April 25, 1988). "Is Prime Time Ready for Its First Lesbian? Gail Strickland Hopes So—and She's About to Find Out". People . Retrieved May 25, 2022.
  2. "It's All about the Light". Palisadian-Post . Pacific Palisades, Calif. August 29, 2007.