Donna Culver Krebbs

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Donna Culver Krebbs
Donna Culver Krebbs.jpg
Susan Howard as Donna Culver Krebbs
DALLAS character
Portrayed by Susan Howard
Duration 1979–87
First appearance March 16, 1979
The Outsiders
Last appearance May 15, 1987
Fall of the House of Ewing
Created by David Jacobs
Occupation Writer
Member of the Texas Energy Commission
Co-Chief Executive Officer of Ewing Oil
Owner of Krebbs #1

Donna Culver Krebbs (maiden name McCullum) is a fictional character in the popular American television series Dallas, played by Susan Howard from 1979 to 1987.[1]

Casting and creation[edit]

Susan Howard was cast in the series in 1979.[2] She was recurring in season 2 and 3, before becoming a regular in season 4. In 1986, Howard won Soap Opera Digest Award for Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role on a Primetime Serial for role.[3] In 1987, the show's producers opted not to renew her contract, stating that her character had run its course.[4] Howard has claimed this decision was connected to her opposition of what she saw as pro-abortion storylines involving her character.[5]


Donna was an intelligent, ambitious and well-regarded politician's wife, married to the much older Sam Culver, a former governor of Texas. During her marriage, she began an affair with Ray Krebbs, foreman of Southfork Ranch. However, despite finding love with Ray, Donna decided to remain with Sam because he was dying. After Sam's death, Donna and Ray attempted a reconciliation but she rebuffed his proposal of marriage because she felt it was too soon after Sam's death. Donna then briefly got romantically involved with Cliff Barnes, but their relationship dissolved when Donna backed Bobby Ewing as a replacement for her stepson Dave Culver in the state senate instead of Cliff. Donna then married Ray in 1981 and they lived in a house that Ray built on the outskirts of Southfork Ranch. Since Ray had found out he was Jock Ewing's son, he acted as though he wasn't good enough for Donna, comparing himself to her and Jock's other sons J.R. and Bobby, especially after he made failed attempts to compete in business by working on development projects with Jock and Punk Anderson. After Jock died in a helicopter crash in South America, Ray fell into a deep depression: drinking, neglecting his duties at Southfork, and having an affair with an old girlfriend named Bonnie. However, he and Donna remained married and stuck by each other. Donna found out while researching for her book on Sam Culver's early years that Sam and Jock had put Sam's uncle, Jonas Culver, in a mental institution in order to get his land and drill the oil on it. Jonas committed suicide while institutionalized.

In the 1984-85 season, Donna and Ray decided to separate due to her emphasis on her new career in the oil industry, but Donna discovered she was pregnant with Ray's child. In the 1985-86 season, Donna and Ray discovered their unborn child had Down syndrome and, despite Ray's efforts for an abortion, Donna decided to keep the child. At a rodeo, she was injured by a bull, causing her to miscarry. She and Ray then adopted a deaf boy named Tony in 1986. However, when star Patrick Duffy decided to return to the show - despite his character Bobby having died a season earlier - the entire 1985-86 season was relegated to a dream. As a result, in the following season, Donna was still pregnant, having never miscarried. This time, she decided to divorce Ray. Donna moved to Washington, D.C., and became a lobbyist for the oil industry. During this time she met Sen. Andrew Dowling and they started a relationship. She subsequently gave birth to Ray's daughter, Margaret (named after Ray's mother), in 1987 and she and Ray parted ways as friends.


  • Curran, Barbara A. (2005). Dallas: The Complete Story of the World's Favorite Prime-Time Soap. Cumberland House Publishing. ISBN 978-1581824728. 


  1. ^ "Whatever happened to; PETROCELLI 1978-79.(Features)." Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland). MGN Ltd. 1999. Retrieved August 14, 2012 from HighBeam Research:
  2. ^ Bruce B. Morris (2009). Prime Time Network Serials: Episode Guides, Casts and Credits for 37 Continuing Television Dramas, 1964-1993 (2 Volumes Set). McFarland. ISBN 978-0786442416. 
  3. ^ "Soap Opera Digest Awards 1986". Soap Opera Digest Awards. Retrieved 2013-04-19. 
  4. ^ Susan Howard:Biography - MSN Movies
  5. ^ Dallas Exclusive Interviews

External links[edit]