New York stage, film and TV actor Martha Greenhouse, who served as a SAG and AFTRA leader for more than four decades, has died. Greenhouse passed away Saturday at the age of 91, according to a statement from SAG-AFTRA. Greenhouse appeared in many plays on and off Broadway, including Summer Brave; Dear Me, The Sky Is Falling; and Jose Quintero’s Our Town. Her TV and film credits included Law & Order; Ryan’s Hope; The Jackie Gleason Show; The Stepford Wives; Car 54, Where Are You?; Woody Allen’s Bananas; and the original production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella.
Greenhouse joined AFTRA in 1941 and Screen Actors Guild in 1955, serving five terms as the president of AFTRA’s New York Local, from 1977-1982, and two terms on SAG’s National Board, from 1981-87. More recently she served as an AFTRA Foundation Board member and was president of the AFTRA Heller Memorial Foundation for more than a decade. She also served on the board of the N.Y. Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and was an AFTRA representative to the Associated Actors and Artistes of America. She remained active on the national and local AFTRA boards until 2005 and 2010 respectively. During her tenure, Greenhouse received the Founder’s Award, the N.Y. Local’s Ken Harvey Award, and the George Heller Gold Card, the highest honor given by national AFTRA for service to the union. She continued to work as an activist and leader, ensuring that plans for Manhattan Plaza included low-income housing for performers.
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