Ben Powers

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Ben Powers
Powers in 1977
Alton Adelbert Powers

(1950-07-05)July 5, 1950
DiedApril 6, 2015(2015-04-06) (aged 64)
EducationRhode Island School of Design
Years active1974–1987
Known forKeith Anderson – Good Times

Alton Adelbert Powers (July 5, 1950 – April 6, 2015), known professionally as Ben Powers, was an American actor. Powers was best known for his role as Keith Albert Anderson, the husband of Thelma Evans, during the sixth and final season of the CBS sitcom Good Times. Powers was also a cast member on the NBC television comedy series Laugh-In (1977–78).

Powers died on April 6, 2015, at age 64 due to liver cancer.[1]


Powers was born in New York City, in Brooklyn, and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. He attended the Rhode Island School of Design.[2] Powers got his first break in the 1970s with Adrian Hall, director at Trinity Repertory Theater in Providence, Rhode Island, his hometown. In addition to stage acting, Powers did stand-up comedy, performed impressions, and sang standards as well as original music he wrote. He was discovered by a Hollywood agent in Providence, signed on to do movies, and entertained at the Playboy clubs in Las Vegas, New York, and Boston. After Good Times, Powers guest starred on a number of popular TV dramas and sitcom shows of the 1980s including Gimme a Break!, Flamingo Road, The Greatest American Hero, The New Odd Couple and Laverne & Shirley. Powers was also a regular on the CBS-TV hit detective drama show Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer in 1984–85, until the star, Stacy Keach, was arrested in London for cocaine smuggling and the show was canceled while Keach did time in England. Powers left the Hollywood scene at the end of 1985, before the detective series was picked up again. In the early 1980s, Powers appeared in a handful of big-screen films which included Cheech and Chong's Next Movie, Things Are Tough All Over and The Man Who Loved Women as well as a number of made-for-TV movies, mostly in smaller supporting roles.


Powers died of liver cancer on April 6, 2015, at the age of 64 and was cremated.[2][3][4]


Year Title Role Notes
1975 Great Performances John Episode: "Brother to Dragons"
1977–78 Laugh-In Himself (performer) 6 episodes
1978–79 Good Times Keith Anderson 24 episodes
1980 Cheech and Chong's Next Movie Welfare Black
1982 Gimme a Break! Tony Episode: "Nell's Ex"
1982 Flamingo Road TV reporter Episode: "An Eye for an Eye"
1982 Flamingo Road Episode: "The Harder They Fall"
1982 Things Are Tough All Over The Pimp
1982 Drop-Out Father Ben Brown TV movie
1982 The New Odd Couple Sidepocket Sidney Episode: "The Hustler"
1982 The Greatest American Hero Ivan Episode: "The Price Is Right"
1982 Laverne & Shirley Aaron Episode: "Death Row: Part 1"
1983 Laverne & Shirley Rick West Episode: "Here Today, Hair Tomorrow"
1983 The Man Who Loved Women Al
1984 Shattered Vows Tod TV movie
1984 Uncensored Skit characters Direct-to-video
1984–85 The New Mike Hammer Moochie 13 episodes


  1. ^ The Hollywood Reporter: 'Good Times' Actor Ben Powers Dies at 64
  2. ^ a b "Ben Powers Dies: 'Good Times' Actor Was 64". April 18, 2015. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
  3. ^ Sad News: "Good Times actor Ben Powers passes away at 64"
  4. ^ Barnes, Mike; Gajewski, Ryan (April 19, 2015). "'Good Times' actor Ben Powers dies at 64". Retrieved April 20, 2015.

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