Martha Greenhouse, SAG, AFTRA official, dies at 91

Actress served five terms as AFTRA New York Local president

Martha Greenhouse, who performed on Broadway, in film and on TV and served on SAG’s national board and as AFTRA’s New York Local prexy, died Jan. 5 in Manhattan after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. She was 91.

Greenhouse served five terms as AFTRA’s New York Local prexy and two terms on the Screen Actors Guild’s national board. More recently she served as an AFTRA Foundation Board member and was prexy of the AFTRA Heller Memorial Foundation for more than a decade. She was also an AFTRA rep to the Associated Actors and Artistes of America and served on the board of the New York chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

“During her more than 40 years of board service, Martha helped lead the New York Local of AFTRA through turbulent times, and the union came out stronger due to her hard work, talent and dedication,” said SAG-AFTRA co-prexy Roberta Reardon. “Her service to the union should be held up as an example to everyone who will walk in her footsteps.”

Greenhouse’s acting credits include “Law & Order,” “The Jackie Gleason Show,” “The Stepford Wives,” Woody Allen’s “Bananas” and the original production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella.” Greenhouse also appeared in a number of plays on and Off Broadway such as “Summer Brave,” “Dear Me, the Sky Is Falling” and Jose Quintero’s “Our Town.”

Greenhouse remained active on the national and local AFTRA boards till 2005 and 2010, respectively, and received kudos for her efforts including the Founder’s Award, the N.Y. Local’s Ken Harvey Award and the George Heller Gold Card.

In the late ’70s, Greenhouse topped the N.Y. Caucus of Artists for Merger, which sought to combine SAG and AFTRA. She was instrumental in forming the SAG-AFTRA Joint Committee for Merger, which met throughout the 1980s.

Thesp joined AFTRA in 1941 and SAG in 1955.

Greenhouse is survived by a son and two grandsons.

More Scene

  • The Ultimate Guide to 2019 Comic-Con

    The Ultimate Guide to 2019 Comic-Con Parties and Activations

    Hollywood is heading down the California coast to San Diego because It’s time for 2019 Comic-Con International. The annual cosplay celebration officially kicks off tomorrow, July 18, with a preview happening tonight. Here, Variety gives you a guide to this year’s parties and activations. Make sure to check back for updates. Wednesday, July 17Amazon Prime [...]

  • Sir Elton John, David Furnish. Sir

    New Elton John AIDS Foundation Gala to be Held in the South of France

    Elton John and David Furnish are launching a new gala for the Elton John AIDS Foundation. The two will host the inaugural A Midsummer Party benefit on July 24 in the south of France at the Johnny Pigozzi’s private estate, Villa Dorane, in Cap d’Antibes. A cocktail reception will be followed by dinner, a live [...]

  • Dwayne Johnson Idris Elba

    Dwayne Johnson: Idris Elba Nixed 'Black James Bond' Joke in 'Hobbs & Shaw'

    In the “Fast & Furious Presents Hobbs & Shaw,” the movie’s villain Brixton, played by Idris Elba, spreads his arms out wide and declares “I’m black Superman.” It turns out that might not have been the original line. Dwayne Johnson tells Variety that Elba was first asked to proclaim he’s “black James Bond,” but the [...]

  • Matteo BocelliAmerican Icon Awards Gala, Inside,

    Top Music Manager Calls Out American Icon Awards for Failing to Pay Talent

    The centuries-old adage no good deed goes unpunished is a common refrain for star music manager Scott Rodger of late. Rodger, who represents Paul McCartney and Andrea Bocelli at Maverick, says his client Matteo Bocelli, the son of the opera star, was stiffed out of promised expense reimbursement by the American Icon Awards. The event, [...]

  • Mary Bailey Steve D'Angelo, Jim Belushi

    Cannabis Industry Tackles Justice Reform With 'Last Prisoner Project'

    Jim Belushi is standing two feet away in the backyard of his spacious Brentwood home, honking a harp like he’s a Blues Brother back in sweet home Chicago accompanied by noted reggae band Rebelution’s Eric Rachmany and Kyle Ahern, who provide a 12-bar shuffle. There’s the sweet smell of skunk — and success — hanging [...]

  • Dwayne Wade holds up the legend

    Dwyane Wade, Megan Rapinoe Win Big at 2019 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Sports Awards

    The 2019 Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports Awards was filled with incredible athletes, inspiring moments and — of course — a massive amount of slime. “I love the kids. I love the slime. I loved the games. I love seeing celebrities and athletes like become kids again. And it’s like my favorite thing,” Michael Strahan told [...]

  • Dave Bautista and Kumail Nanjiani

    Dave Bautista Talks Representation in Hollywood and Defying Stereotypes with 'Stuber'

    Dave Bautista and Kumail Nanjiani make an unlikely duo in “Stuber,” an R-rated comedy about a police officer and his Uber driver. But the two connected over the rare chance to star in the film as actors of Asian descent (Baustia is half-Filipino and Nanjiani is Pakistani). “I’ve been stereotyped for a couple different reasons [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content