Fred Grandy

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Fred Grandy
Fred Grandy.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Iowa's 5th district
In office
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 1995
Preceded by Jim R. Lightfoot
Succeeded by Tom Latham
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Iowa's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1987 – January 3, 1993
Preceded by Berkley Bedell
Succeeded by District eliminated
Personal details
Born Fredrick Lawrence Grandy
(1948-06-29) June 29, 1948 (age 67)
Sioux City, Iowa
Political party Republican
Profession Actor, politician, radio personality

Fredrick Lawrence "Fred" Grandy (born June 29, 1948) is a former actor best known for his role as "Gopher" on the sitcom The Love Boat and who later became a member of the United States House of Representatives from the state of Iowa. Grandy was most recently the host of The Grandy Group, a morning drive time radio talk show on 630 WMAL in Washington, D.C..

Early life[edit]

Grandy was born in Sioux City, Iowa. He received his bachelor's degree in English studies from Harvard University in 1970 and is conversant in both French and Arabic.

Television career[edit]

Grandy played a recurring character on the 1970s sitcom, Maude, playing the boyfriend of Maude's daughter, Carol. He played the ship's purser, Burl "Gopher" Smith, for nine seasons (1977–86) on the American television series The Love Boat. He also wrote several vignettes for the show. In 1982, while visiting Turkey to film scenes for the show, Grandy suffered severe burns when a balloon filled with hydrogen exploded.[1]

Grandy appeared in the 1973 made for TV movie, The Girl Most Likely to..., as Ted Gates. He also appeared in a number of Match Game episodes in the mid-1970s. He first sat in the male guest-star seat in the top row left, then later sat in the top row right while he filled in for Charles Nelson Reilly when Reilly was working on other projects.

In 2014, Fred Grandy had a recurring role on Season 3 of The Mindy Project for which his son Charlie Grandy is a writer. He portrayed Dr. William Ledreau.

Grandy holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Washington Shakespeare Theatre and George Washington University.

Political career[edit]

Unknown to most television viewers during the height of his The Love Boat stardom, Grandy's political interests preceded his acting career. Prior to college, he was the roommate of David Eisenhower (grandson of President Dwight D. Eisenhower) at Phillips Exeter Academy and later was best man at Eisenhower's wedding to Julie Nixon. He also served as a speechwriter for Iowa Congressman Wiley Mayne.

Grandy, a Republican, won the election to an Iowa United States House of Representatives seat in 1986 by 3,000 votes. Although he tried to distance himself from his acting career at the time, he told People magazine: "If there were no Gopher, there would be no Fred Grandy for Congress."

During his four terms in Congress, he served on a variety of committees, including Ways and Means, Agriculture, Standards of Official Conduct, and Education and the Workforce. While a member of Congress, Grandy won eight Watchdog of the Treasury awards.

In 1994, he entered the Republican primary race for Governor of Iowa against incumbent Terry Branstad; he lost the election by 4 percentage points.

Post-Congressional career[edit]

Grandy later served as President and CEO of Goodwill Industries International from 1995–2000. He became a political commentator for National Public Radio and served as a visiting professor teaching a course on non-profit organizations at the School of Public Affairs at the University of Maryland, College Park.

From 2003 to 2010, Grandy and radio veteran Andy Parks were the hosts of The Grandy & Andy Morning Show, a conservative radio talk show on 630 WMAL in Washington, D.C.. In May 2010, the program was reconfigured and was afterward called The Grandy Group. He left the radio station in 2011

Grandy was also the host of a show on Retirement Living TV called Daily Cafe (with MSNBC anchor Alex Witt).[2]

Since then he has been a Senior Fellow for National Security Affairs at the Washington-based Center for Security Policy, developing and managing projects on domestic terrorism and counter intelligence.[3]

In May 2013, Grandy returned to the stage, starring in a production of Sleuth at the Surflight Theatre in Beach Haven, New Jersey.


  1. ^ Snierson, Dan (2007-09-07). "''The Love Boat'' flashback". Retrieved 2011-12-10. 
  2. ^ "RLTV Shows: Daily Café". Retrieved 2011-12-10. 
  3. ^ "Fred Grandy: Exposing and Countering the Activities of Radical Islam". Gates of Vienna. October 6, 2011. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Berkley Bedell
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Iowa's 6th congressional district

Succeeded by
none; district eliminated
Preceded by
Jim Ross Lightfoot
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Iowa's 5th congressional district

Succeeded by
Tom Latham