Director, producer, writer and former DGA president Jack Shea, died yesterday of complications from Alzheimer’s in Tarzana, CA, according to his wife Patt. He was 84. Shea, a New York City native, served three terms as Directors Guild of America president from 1997-2002. Under his watch, the DGA addressed runaway production, encouraged diversity in hiring, formed an Independent Directors Committee and negotiated landmark deals including the historic “blended contract.” One of the original organizers and a past president of the Radio and Television Directors Guild, the precursor to the DGA, Shea encouraged the merger of the RTDG with the Screen Directors Guild in 1960 to form the DGA. In 1992, he was awarded the DGA’s Robert Aldrich Award for “40 years of extraordinary service.” His 40-year television directing and producing career included episodes of The Jeffersons, Silver Spoons, The Ropers, Sanford & Son and Designing Women for which he received an Emmy nomination. His other credits include The Charmings, Growing Pains, The Waltons, Valerie’s Family, The Royal Family, The Golden Girls, Punky Brewster and Full House. Shea also had a longtime professional relationship with Bob Hope, directing many holiday and comedy specials from 1956-1966, including many specials taped overseas.
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