James Pickens Jr.
James Pickens Jr. (born October 26, 1954) is an American actor. He is best known for his starring role as Dr. Richard Webber on the ABC medical drama television series Grey's Anatomy, and for his supporting role as Deputy Director Alvin Kersh on later seasons of the Fox Network science fiction series The X-Files, and Chuck Mitchell on Roseanne (1990-1996;2018), and The Conners (2018–Present).
Early life and education
Pickens was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He began acting while a student at Bowling Green State University. His first acting role was in a campus production of Matters of Choice by Chuck Gordone. Pickens earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from BGSU in 1976.
Pickens started his professional acting career at the Roundabout Theatre in New York City playing Walter Lee in A Raisin in the Sun. In 1981, Pickens performed in the Negro Ensemble Company's production of A Soldier's Play, starring alongside Denzel Washington and Samuel L. Jackson.
In 1986, Pickens began his TV career playing Zack Edwards on the soap opera Another World from 1986 to 1990. He went on to have recurring roles on The X-Files as Deputy Director Kersh, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The West Wing, Roseanne, Beverly Hills, 90210, JAG, and Six Feet Under. He also served a role in 42. In 1997, Pickens played the role of Stevens, head of NASA, in Disney’s comedy Rocket Man.
In 2002, Pickens had a cameo appearance as the male zoo doctor in the film Red Dragon.
In the February 28, 2007, all-star benefit reading of "The Gift of Peace" at UCLA's Freud Playhouse, he portrayed a man whose life experiences lead him to volunteer in the peace movement, and played alongside actors Ed Asner, Barbara Bain, Amy Brenneman, George Coe, and Wendie Malick. The play was an open appeal and fundraiser for passage of U.S. House Resolution 808, which sought to establish a Cabinet-level "Department of Peace" in the U.S. government, to be funded by a two-percent diversion of the Pentagon's annual budget.
In 2005, Pickens was chosen to play Dr. Richard Webber on the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy. In 2018, Pickens has reprised his role as Chuckie Mitchell in two episodes of the tenth season revival of Roseanne. In 2019, he was inducted into the National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum.
Pickens married Gina Taylor, a former member of Musique, on May 27, 1984 and has two children. In his spare time Pickens can be found horseback riding and roping cattle. He is a member of the United States Team Roping Championship and competes in roping events across the country. He owns an American Quarter Horse named Smokey.
James's two children, Carl Pickens and Gavyn Pickens, are both pursuing careers in show business. His son Carl is working on a Hip-Hop career and can be seen in various television appearances, including Hangin' with Mr. Cooper where he appeared alongside his long-time friend Omar Gooding. His father James Pickens Sr. worked for the City of Cleveland.
|1992||Trespass||Police Officer Reese|
|1993||Boiling Point||Prison Officer|
|1993||Menace II Society||Man|
|1994||Hostile Intentions||Capt. Connor|
|1995||Dead Presidents||Mr. Curtis|
|1996||Power 98||Det. Wilkinson|
|1996||Ghosts of Mississippi||Medgar Evers|
|1998||How Stella Got Her Groove Back||Walter Payne|
|1999||Liberty Heights||Sylvia's Father|
|2002||Red Dragon||Male Zoo Doctor||Uncredited|
|2002||Home Room||Principal Robbins|
|2008||Ball Don't Lie||Roberto|
|2010||Just Wright||Lloyd Wright|
|1986–1990||Another World||Zack Edwards||Unknown episodes|
|Roseanne||Chuck Mitchell||21 episodes|
|1991–1992||Beverly Hills, 90210||Henry Thomas||10 episodes|
|1992||Blossom||Vinnie||Episode: "The Letter"|
|1992||Parker Lewis Can't Lose||Fred||Episode: "Hungry Heart"|
|1992||L.A. Law||Joseph Russell||Episode: "Zo Long"|
|1992||Doogie Howser, M.D.||Bert||Episode: "Roommate with a View"|
|1992||Exclusive||Jonathan Heglin||Television film|
|1993||NYPD Blue||Nathan||Episode: "Personal Foul"|
|1993||Murder, She Wrote||Sonny Greene||Episode: "The Survivor"|
|1994||Renegade||Lieutenant Pete Calloway||Episode: "Hostage"|
|1994||Coach||Rick Williams||Episode: "Blue Chip Blues"|
|1994||Me and the Boys||Coach||Episode: "Black Dads Can't Jump"|
|1994||A Child's Cry for Help||Brad Currie||Television film|
|1994||Lily in Winter||Chick||Television film|
|1995||Trail by Fire||Television film|
|1995||Sharon's Secret||Ashmore||Television film|
|1995||Touched by an Angel||George||Episode: "The Driver"|
|1996||In the House||Russell||Episode: "My Crazy Valentine"|
|1996||The Lazarus Man||—||Episode: "The Conspirator"|
|1996||One West Waikiki||—||Episode: "Allergic to Golf"|
|1996||Dangerous Minds||Coach Butch Kelly||Episode: "Moonstruck"|
|1996||Bloodhounds||Agent John DeGraf||Television film|
|1996–1997||Something So Right||Jim||5 episodes|
|1997||Pacific Palisades||Josh Smith||Episode: "Past & Present Danger"|
|1997||Walker, Texas Ranger||Staff Sergeant Luther Parrish||Episode: "The Fighting McLains"|
|1997–1998||Brooklyn South||Detective||4 episodes|
|1997–2000||The Practice||Detective Mike McKrew||15 episodes|
|1998||The Pretender||Clark Thomas||Episode: "Crash"|
|1998||Seinfeld||Detective Hudson||Episode: "The Finale"|
|1998||Little Girl Fly Away||Detective Walter Engelhart||Television film|
|1998–2000||Any Day Now||Judge Lucius Pearl||3 episodes|
|The X-Files||FBI Assistant / Deputy Director Alvin Kersh||20 episodes|
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
|1999||Vengeance Unlimited||Mr. Hobbs||Episode: "Friends"|
|1999||JAG||Commander Wallace Burke||2 episodes|
|1999||A Slight Case of Murder||Det. Larry Gray||Television film|
|2000||City of Angels||Wilson Patterson||3 episodes|
|2000||Daddio||Doug Grayson||Episode: "The Premium Also Rises"|
|2000||The District||Mr. Lane||Episode: "The Real Terrorist"|
|2000||Family Law||—||Episode: "Family Values"|
|2000||NYPD Blue||Lt. Joe Abner||3 episodes|
|2001||Semper Fi||Mr. Maddox||Television film|
|2001–2002||Philly||Clyde Coleman||7 episodes|
|2002||Strong Medicine||Dr. Everett Sloane||Episode: "Outcomes"|
|2002||Crossing Jordan||Agent Hawkins||Episode: "Bombs Away"|
|2002||MDs||Mr. Farrell||Episode: "Cruel and Unusual"|
|2002–2003||Six Feet Under||Roderick Charles||2 episodes|
|2002–2003||Becker||Cliff Bennett||2 episodes|
|2003||CSI: Miami||Prison Warden||Episode: "Body Count"|
|2003||The Lyon's Den||Terrance Christianson||3 episodes|
|2004||Line of Fire||Kenneth Stevens||Episode: "The Senator"|
|2004||The West Wing||Mayor||Episode: "Full Disclosure"|
|2004||Jack & Bobby||Marcus Ride||Episode: "Pilot"|
|2005||Curb Your Enthusiasm||Doctor||2 episodes|
|2005–present||Grey's Anatomy||Richard Webber||405 episodes|
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Satellite Award for Best Cast – Television Series
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
Nominated—Golden Nymph Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series
Nominated—NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series
Nominated—NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (2006–11)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2006, 2008)
|2007–2009||Private Practice||Richard Webber||2 episodes|
|2010||Seattle Grace: Message of Hope||Richard Webber||6 episodes|
|2018||Grey's Anatomy: B-Team||Richard Webber||1 episode|
|2018||Yellowstone||Old Cowboy||Episode: "The Unravelling, Pt. 2"|
|2018–2022||The Conners||Chuck Mitchell||9 episodes|
|2020–present||Station 19||Richard Webber||6 episodes|
|2022–2023||The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder||Charles (voice)||2 episodes|
- "Actor, alum Pickens to address BGSU grads". Bowling Green State University. www.bgsu.edu. Retrieved January 20, 2018.
- "H.R.808 - Department of Peace and Nonviolence Act, 110th Congress (2007-2008)". 18 May 2007. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
- Martino, Stacey. "The Gift of Peace". Archived from the original on September 19, 2008. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
- Ausiello, Michael (November 17, 2017). "Ask Ausiello: Spoilers on Good Doctor, Roseanne, Chicago Fire, Supernatural, Walking Dead, The Flash and More". TVLine. Retrieved December 11, 2017.
- "Hall of Fame Inductees". National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum. Retrieved June 17, 2023.
- "Listings - X-FILES, THE on FOX | TheFutonCritic.com". www.thefutoncritic.com. Retrieved January 20, 2018.