Terry Carter

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Terry Carter
Loz terry carter.png
Born John Everett DeCoste
(1928-12-16) December 16, 1928 (age 86)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1955-present
Spouse(s) Anna DeCoste (1964-1990)
Beate Glatved DeCoste (1991-2006)
Etaferhu Mesfene Zenebe (2009-present)
Website terry-carter.net

Terry Carter (born December 16, 1928) is an American actor and filmmaker, known for his roles as Sgt. Joe Broadhurst on the seven-year TV series McCloud[1] and as Colonel Tigh on the original Battlestar Galactica.

Early life[edit]

Carter was born in Brooklyn, New York City, as John Everett DeCoste. His mother, Mercedes, was a native of the Dominican Republic,[1] and his father, William DeCoste, was of Argentinian and African-American descent who operated a radio repair business.[2] Carter graduated from Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan in 1946. He attended Hunter College, Boston University, and U.C.L.A. before earning a Bachelor of Science degree from Northeastern University.[3] Carter left St. John's University School of Law after two years to become an actor.[4]

Acting career[edit]

Carter gained theatre experience in several productions on the Broadway and off-Broadway stage. His Broadway credits include playing the male lead opposite Eartha Kitt in the play Mrs. Patterson[1] and performing the title role in the musical extravaganza Kwamina.[1]

From 1965 to 1968, Carter worked as a weekend newscaster for WBZ-TV in Boston,[5] where he became an anchor-reporter. Some sources said he was Boston's first black TV newsman.[6] During his three-year stint, he also served as New England television's first black opening-night movie and theater critic. Although WBZ said he resigned from the station, Carter told the black press that had been fired, because Westinghouse (which owned WBZ) objected to his personal involvement in numerous community projects.[7] His departure left Boston without any black TV news reporters.

Carter also acted in numerous TV series, specials, and theatrical films. He was featured as the only black actor to have a leading role opposite Vic Morrow in "Combat" (Season 3 Episode 25: "The Long Wait"-1965. His role was a truck driver named Private Archie Masters. In the role, Carter never fired a shot, he just threw three smoke grenades under fire in a rescue of Morrow in his role as Sgt Saunders) He was a regular cast member in The Phil Silvers Show (also known as The Sergeant Bilko Show).[1] He played the part of Police Officer Tuttle in the 1974 children's film Benji. He is best known internationally for his co-starring role as "Colonel Tigh" in the popular science-fiction TV series Battlestar Galactica. He was originally cast as "Lieutenant Boomer", but was cut following a roller skating accident that fractured his ankle. After replacing Carter with Herb Jefferson, Jr., producer Glen A. Larson instead offered Terry Carter the role of "Colonel Tigh", second in command of the ragtag fleet of starships. Carter also starred as Dennis Weaver's partner, "Sergeant Joe Broadhurst" in the detective series McCloud for seven years. He played opposite Pam Grier in the motion picture Foxy Brown. He played the role of CIA chief "Texas Slim" in Hamilton, a multinational action-adventure Swedish film (1999). More recently, Carter had a recurring role in Hotel Caesar, Norway's most popular soap opera, as "Solomon Tefari", an Ethiopian businessman and father of one of the main characters.

Death confusion[edit]

In January 2015, Carter was erroneously reported to have been a victim of a hit and run incident involving Suge Knight in California that resulted in his death. The victim was an associate of Knight's who had the same name as Carter, but was significantly younger (aged 55) than the 86-year-old actor. Carter released several statements through the media confirming he was alive.[8]

Production career[edit]

In 1975, Carter started a small Los Angeles corporation, Meta/4 Productions, Inc.[1] for which he produced and directed industrial and educational presentations on film and videotape for the federal government.[1]

Carter is president of Council for Positive Images, Inc., a non-profit organization he formed in 1979, dedicated to enhancing intercultural and interethnic understanding through audiovisual communication. Under the Council’s auspices, Carter has produced and directed award-winning dramatic and documentary programs for presentation on PBS and distribution worldwide.

Selected projects[edit]

  • Katherine Dunham Technique – Library of Congress
    A 2-½ hour presentation of the dance technique of anthropologist-choreographer Katherine Dunham. Funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, this video documentary is designed to serve as a study guide for dance teachers, scholars and dancers, as part of the Katherine Dunham Legacy Project of the Library of Congress. In 2012, Terry Carter released The Katherine Dunham Technique as a DVD, available for purchase at www.dunhamtechniquedvd.com.
  • A Duke Named Ellington - WNET-TV (PBS), American Masters Series (1988)
    This two-hour musical documentary features "the Duke" himself, reminiscing and performing, as soloist and with his illustrious orchestra. A Duke Named Ellington offers a retrospective of Ellington's half-century career, focusing primarily on his music and method, his artistic accomplishments and his role as a trailblazer in the development of modern music. A Duke Named Ellington had its world premiere on the PBS American Masters series, to critical acclaim. A Duke Named Ellington was selected as the official US entry in international television festivals in countries such as the People's Republic of China, France, Spain, Italy, Canada, Brazil, Poland, and Bulgaria. A Duke Named Ellington has been telecast in most countries of Europe, as well as in Japan, Australia, and South Africa. The program has been awarded the CINE Golden Eagle and the Golden Antenna. A Duke Named Ellington was nominated for an Emmy Award as "Outstanding Informational Special". In 2007, Terry Carter released A Duke Named Ellington, the documentary he produced for PBS American Masters in 1988, as a DVD: A Duke Named Ellington DVD.
  • Once Upon A Vision - KET-TV (PBS) (1991)
    This one-hour television documentary reveals the little-known history of Berea, Kentucky, a unique 19th Century inter-racial colony founded in the midst of the slave-holding South. Before the Civil War, a group of zealous abolitionists and former slaves began building a community based on unconditional racial and gender equality and participatory democracy. For more than half a century, withstanding intense persecution from slavers, pro-slavery politicians, and the Ku Klux Klan, these poor white and black settlers lived, and died for, their vision of multi-racial democracy. This program has become part of the secondary-school American History curriculum in Kentucky. Hosted and narrated by historian and author Alex Haley.
  • JazzMasters - TV2/Denmark (1988)
    This series of 13 television portraits features some of the most outstanding musical artists in the world of jazz. An international co-production, JazzMasters was the first program series ever commissioned by TV2/Denmark. The JazzMasters series has been telecast in Scandinavia, France, Poland, Bulgaria and Japan. The series features programs about Chet Baker, Kenny Drew, Dexter Gordon, Johnny Griffin, Bobby Hutcherson, Carmen McRae, Palle Mikkelborg, James Moody, Clark Terry, Randy Weston, Niels Henning Ørsted-Pedersen, Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter.
  • K*I*D*S - KCET-TV (PBS), US Department of Education (1984)
    This dramatic television miniseries was designed for public broadcasting to promote interracial and interethnic understanding among adolescents. K*I*D*S is the story of a multi-racial group of teenagers struggling to cope with some of the adult-sized conflicts confronting youth in America today. Endorsed by the National Education Association, K*I*D*S, accompanied by a teachers' guide, was also distributed on videocassette to secondary schools throughout the nation. K*I*D*S received an Emmy award in Los Angeles as "Best Series for Children and Youth".
  • Katherine Dunham: Dancing With Life - National Endowment for the Arts
    This 90-minute documentary program is a work in progress, designed for PBS, about the extraordinary life and work of the African-American anthropologist-choreographer-dancer, a pioneer internationally heralded as one of the most influential creative forces in American dance theatre.


  • Emmy Award, Los Angeles, Best Series for Children and Youth, 1985, for K*I*D*S
  • Emmy Nomination, Best Informational Special, 1989, for A Duke Named Ellington
  • CINE Golden Eagle, 1989, for A Duke Named Ellington
  • Golden Antenna, 1989, for A Duke Named Ellington
  • Award for Excellence, L. A. Film Review Board, 1977, for Child Abuse & Neglect Series


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Martin, Bob (June 27, 1976). "McCloud's sidekick get his kicks as actor-producer". Independent Press-Telegram. Long Beach, California. p. 44. 
  2. ^ Terry Carter - Biography
  3. ^ Elizabeth Sullivan, "Terry Carter Gaining Fame," Boston Globe, February 15, 1970, p. A9
  4. ^ "TV Actor Terry Carter Wants to be a Teacher." Norfolk (VA) New Journal and Guide, February 27, 1965, p. 14.
  5. ^ Nathan Cobb, "The Combative Jimmy Myers," Boston Globe, January 27, 1993, p. 21
  6. ^ Elizabeth Sullivan, "A New Face on the 11 O'Clock News." Boston Globe, February 1, 1981, p. TV-1.
  7. ^ Harold L. Vaughan, "Resignation Phony Says Ex-Newsman." Baltimore Afro-American, August 10, 1968, p. 16
  8. ^ David Gardner. "Terry Carter: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know". Heavy.com. Retrieved 3 February 2015. 

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