Biff Henderson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Biff Henderson
Biff Henderson in New York City.jpg
Biff Henderson in New York City.
James Jackson Henderson, Jr.[1]

(1946-10-03) October 3, 1946 (age 76)
Occupation(s)Stage manager for:
To Tell the Truth (1969)
The David Letterman Show (1980)
Late Night with David Letterman (1982–93)
Late Show with David Letterman (1993–2015)

James Jackson "Biff" Henderson, Jr. (born October 3, 1946) is an American comedian and television personality best known for his work on the Late Show with David Letterman. He was the show's stage manager and appeared in occasional humorous segments, which often involved interviewing people at public places and events.

Early life and education[edit]

Henderson was born in Durham, North Carolina, in the Hayti District. He acquired the nickname "Biff" from his mother when her friend had a dream involving a boy named "Biff".[2] He graduated from Hillside High School in Durham, and earned a degree in business administration from Hampton Institute. He also served in the United States Army and deployed to Vietnam during the Vietnam War.


In 1970, Henderson had been in New York to interview with The Hertz Corporation, which at the time had been co-owned with NBC by the Radio Corporation of America. His need for a restroom in the RCA Building led to a chance encounter with a janitor who introduced him to an NBC sales executive. He would join NBC, working first for the NBC Radio Sales Services and Station Clearances Department and then as stage manager during NBC's coverage of the World Series, coverage of various NASA missions, plus shows such as Today and To Tell the Truth.[3][2]

His association with David Letterman, which spanned 35 years, began in 1980 as a stage manager on The David Letterman Show (NBC). He rejoined Letterman with the launch of Late Night with David Letterman (NBC) in 1982, remaining with it and Late Show with David Letterman (CBS) for their entire runs.[2] Henderson frequently participated in the on-screen antics and sometimes was the star of short segments recounting his humorous adventures in New York. Henderson's "theme" music on the show was "Milestones" by Miles Davis.

Henderson took part in a Jimmy Kimmel Live! skit honoring Back to the Future during a Kimmel broadcast from Brooklyn in October 2015.[4] When Michael J. Fox (as Marty McFly) and Christopher Lloyd (as Emmett Brown) ask Kimmel what became of their nemesis Biff, Henderson came onstage, prompting "Marty" to tell Kimmel, "no, not that Biff."[5]


  1. ^ Wadler, Joyce (February 13, 2002). "PUBLIC LIVES; A Straight Man Who Won't Dwell on the Bad Stuff". The New York Times. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "Late Show Cast: Biff Henderson". CBS TV. CBS. Retrieved May 19, 2015.
  3. ^ "Say Hello to David Letterman's On-Air Sidekick, Biff Henderson!". Westchester. Retrieved February 12, 2022.
  4. ^ Blake, Meredith (October 23, 2015). "Highlights from Jimmy Kimmel's week in Brooklyn". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  5. ^ Ramisetti, Kirthana (October 22, 2015). "Marty McFly, Doc Brown visit Jimmy Kimmel Live for 'Back to the Future Day'". Daily News (New York). Retrieved November 5, 2015.

External links[edit]