01-28 Happy birthday to Susan Howard, Born: January 28, 1944.
Jeri Lynn Mooney, better known as Susan Howard, is the American actress who played Mara, the first female Klingon to appear in Star Trek, and one of only two (and the only one with a speaking part) ever seen in the original series, in the episode “Day of the Dove”.
Howard was born in Marshall, Texas, and graduated from Marshall High School in the early 1960s. She attended the University of Texas for two years, after which she moved to California, becoming a member of the Los Angeles Repertory Company. She began acting on television programs in 1966.
Outside of Star Trek, Howard is best known for playing Donna Culver Krebbs on the primetime soap opera Dallas from 1979 through 1987. This role actually began with a single guest appearance in 1978, but the producers liked her performance so much that they asked her to return, and she played the character for an additional nine years. Throughout her run on this series, she co-starred with other Trek actors, including Barbara Babcock, Joanna Cassidy, Glenn Corbett, Barry Jenner, Leigh J. McCloskey, Derek McGrath, Bert Remsen, William Smithers, Paul Sorenson, Ray Wise, and Morgan Woodward. Howard also tried her hand at writing for the series, ultimately becoming a member of the Writers Guide of America, a position which she currently still holds.
Prior to Dallas, Howard was a regular on the legal drama series Petrocelli (1974-76), playing lawyer Tony Petrocelli’s wife (a role played by Diana Muldaur in the 1970 movie The Lawyer, from which the Petrocelli series was spun off). David Huddleston was also a regular on this series; the show’s pilot movie, entitled Night Games, co-starred Henry Darrow. Other guest appearances on the show include William Shatner, John Colicos, Susan Oliver and Glenn Corbett among others. Howard’s performance on Petrocelli garnered her nominations from both the Emmy Awards and the Golden Globes. Despite this, the series was canceled in 1976.
In addition, Howard has made guest appearances on such TV series as I Dream of Jeannie (working with Lou Antonio and Ted Cassidy), The Flying Nun (including an episode with Michael Pataki), Bonanza (with John Beck, Dean Stockwell, and Harry Townes), and Mission: Impossible (co-starring James B. Sikking and Paul Sorensen and directed by Reza Badiyi). Shortly after working with Michael Ansara on Star Trek, she appeared with him in an episode of Here Come the Brides, a series which starred TOS guest stars Robert Brown, Mark Lenard and David Soul.
Howard reunited with her TOS co-star William Shatner in the unsold TV pilot, Indict and Convict. Alfred Ryder and Michael Pataki appeared in this project, as well. Howard has also starred in a number of made-for-TV movies, including The Silent Gun (1969, with John Beck, Walker Edmiston, and Michael Forest), Columbo: The Most Crucial Game (1972, with James Gregory, Don Keefer and Dean Stockwell), and Superdome (1978, with Jane Wyatt and Michael Pataki).
She has only three feature films to her credit. The first was the 1977 drama Moonshine County Express, in which she starred with fellow TOS guest stars Morgan Woodward and Jeff Corey. That same year, she starred in the biker movie Sidewinder 1, which also featured Byron Morrow. Most recently, she co-starred with Stanley Kamel in the 1993 independent drama Come the Morning.
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