The Info List - Grant Tinker

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Grant Almerin Tinker (January 11, 1926 – November 28, 2016) was an American television executive who served as Chairman and CEO of NBC from 1981 to 1986. Additionally, he was the co-founder of MTM Enterprises and a television producer. Tinker was the husband of actress and producer Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
for 19 years (1962–1981).


1 Life and career 2 Personal life 3 Death 4 Awards and honors 5 References 6 Further reading 7 External links

Life and career[edit] Tinker was born in Stamford, Connecticut, the son of Margaret (née Hessin) and Arthur Almerin Tinker.[1][2] During World War II, Tinker served in the United States Army Air Forces Reserve. He graduated from Dartmouth College. His sons, Mark and John, are also producers. In 1961, Tinker rejoined NBC
and was the head of West Coast programming, where he developed I Spy, Dr. Kildare, and The Man from U.N.C.L.E.[3] Tinker married Moore in 1962. In 1969, they formed the television production company MTM Enterprises. Tinker hired Room 222
Room 222
writers James L. Brooks
James L. Brooks
and Allan Burns
Allan Burns
to create and produce the company's first television series, The Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
Show. MTM produced such popular American sitcoms and drama television series as Rhoda, The Bob Newhart
Show, WKRP in Cincinnati, Hill Street Blues, and St. Elsewhere. After his divorce from Moore in 1981, Tinker left MTM to become the chairman and CEO of NBC, then the perennial last-place American television network (in terms of Nielsen ratings and profits). During Tinker's tenure in NBC's top position, the network regained ratings and produced the popular shows The Cosby Show, Family Ties, The Golden Girls, Cheers, Night Court, and Hill Street Blues. Tinker left the network in 1986, shortly after its parent company RCA
was bought by General Electric. After leaving NBC, Tinker tried to repeat his success with MTM by forming GTG (Grant Tinker-Gannett) Entertainment, but the business venture failed and the company closed in 1990.[citation needed] Personal life[edit] Tinker was married three times. In 1950 to Ruth Byerly, with whom he had three sons and a daughter.[4] Two of their sons, Mark and John, are successful producers. Tinker's marriage to Byerly ended in divorce in 1962.[4] Later that same year, Tinker married actress Mary Tyler Moore. This marriage also ended in divorce 19 years later in 1981. Tinker's third marriage was to aviator Brooke Knapp, with whom he remained married until his death in 2016. Death[edit] Tinker died at his Los Angeles
Los Angeles
home on November 28, 2016, at the age of 90.[3] His death came just two months before the death of his ex-wife Mary Tyler Moore.[5] Awards and honors[edit]

Tinker was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1997. In 2004, Tinker won a personal Peabody Award
Peabody Award
"for recognizing, protecting, and fostering creativity of the highest order."[6]


^ "Miss Ruth Byerly Connecticut Bride; A Bridal Couple, A Bride and an Engaged Girl". The New York Times. March 5, 1950.  ^ "Arthur Almerin Tinker". longislandsurnames.com. Retrieved November 9, 2015.  ^ a b McFadden, Robert D. (November 30, 2016). "Grant Tinker, Former Chairman of NBC, Dies at 90; Made Network a Ratings Powerhouse". The New York Times.  ^ a b Shah, Diane K. (October 25, 1987). "STARTING OVER: TV'S GRANT TINKER" (web). New York Times. Retrieved December 20, 2017.  ^ "Mary Tyler Moore, Who Incarnated the Modern Woman on TV, Dies at 80". The New York Times. Retrieved July 25, 2017.  ^ "Personal Award: Grant Tinker". Peabody Award. Winter 2004. 

Further reading[edit]

Tinker, Grant; Rukeyser, Bud (1994). Tinker in Television: From General Sarnoff to General Electric. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-0671759407. 

External links[edit]

Grant Tinker
Grant Tinker
on IMDb Grant Tinker
Grant Tinker
interview video at the Archive of American Television Grant Tinker
Grant Tinker
profile at the Museum of Broadcast Communications website

Business positions

Preceded by Fred Silverman CEO of NBC 1981–1986 Succeeded by Bob Wright

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TCA Career Achievement Award

Grant Tinker
Grant Tinker
(1985) Walter Cronkite
Walter Cronkite
(1986) Hill Street Blues
Hill Street Blues
(1987) David Brinkley
David Brinkley
(1988) Lucille Ball
Lucille Ball
(1989) Jim Henson
Jim Henson
(1990) Brandon Tartikoff
Brandon Tartikoff
(1991) Johnny Carson
Johnny Carson
(1992) Bob Hope
Bob Hope
(1993) Charles Kuralt
Charles Kuralt
(1994) Ted Turner
Ted Turner
(1995) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1996) Fred Rogers
Fred Rogers
(1997) Roone Arledge (1998) Norman Lear
Norman Lear
(1999) Dick Van Dyke
Dick Van Dyke
(2000) Sid Caesar
Sid Caesar
(2001) Bill Cosby
Bill Cosby
(2002) Carl Reiner
Carl Reiner
(2003) Don Hewitt
Don Hewitt
(2004) Bob Newhart
Bob Newhart
(2005) Carol Burnett
Carol Burnett
(2006) Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
(2007) Lorne Michaels
Lorne Michaels
(2008) Betty White
Betty White
(2009) James Garner
James Garner
(2010) Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey
(2011) David Letterman
David Letterman
(2012) Barbara Walters
Barbara Walters
(2013) James Burrows (2014) James L. Brooks
James L. Brooks
(2015) Lily Tomlin
Lily Tomlin
(2016) Ken Burns
Ken Burns

v t e

Television Hall of Fame Class of 1997

James L. Brooks Garry Marshall Quinn Martin Diane Sawyer Grant Tinker

v t e


CEOs of NBCUniversal

Fred Silverman (1978-1981) Grant Tinker
Grant Tinker
(1981–1986) Bob Wright
Bob Wright
(1986-2007) Jeff Zucker
Jeff Zucker
(2007-2011) Steve Burke (2011-present)

Presidents of NBC

Sylvester Weaver (1953-1955) Robert Sarnoff (1955-1965) Robert E. Kintner (1958-1965) Julian Goodman (1966-1974) Herb Schlosser (1974-1978) Fred Silverman (1978-1981)

West Coast Presidents

Perry Lafferty (1979) Don Ohlmeyer (1993-1999) Scott Sassa (1999-2002)

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MTM Enterprises

Mary Tyler Moore Grant Tinker

TV shows

The Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
Show (1970–77) The Bob Newhart Show
The Bob Newhart Show
(1972–78) Paul Sand in Friends and Lovers (1974–1975) The Texas Wheelers
The Texas Wheelers
(1974–75) Rhoda
(1974–78) The Bob Crane Show
The Bob Crane Show
(1975) Doc (1975–76) Three for the Road (1975) Phyllis (1975–77) The Tony Randall Show
The Tony Randall Show
(1976–78) Lou Grant (1977–82) The Betty White
Betty White
Show (1977–78) We've Got Each Other (1977–78) The White Shadow (1978–81) WKRP in Cincinnati
WKRP in Cincinnati
(1978–82) Mary (1978) The Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
Hour (1979) The Last Resort (1979–80) Paris (1979–80) Hill Street Blues
Hill Street Blues
(1981–87) Remington Steele
Remington Steele
(1982–87) St. Elsewhere
St. Elsewhere
(1982–88) Newhart
(1982–90) Bay City Blues
Bay City Blues
(1983) The Duck Factory (1984) Mary (1985–86) Fresno (1986) The Popcorn Kid
The Popcorn Kid
(1987) Beverly Hills Buntz (1987–88) Eisenhower and Lutz (1988) Annie McGuire (1988) Tattingers (1988–89) City (1990) Capital News
Capital News
(1990) Evening Shade
Evening Shade
(1990-94) The Trials of Rosie O'Neill
The Trials of Rosie O'Neill
(1990–91) You Take the Kids (1990–91) The New WKRP in Cincinnati
WKRP in Cincinnati
(1991–93) Xuxa (1993) Boogies Diner (1994–95) Wild Animal Games (1995–96) Family Challenge (1995–97) Wait 'til You Have Kids (1996–97) Bailey Kipper's P.O.V. (1996–97) Shopping Spree
Shopping Spree
(1996–98) Sparks (1996–98) The Pretender (1996-2000) It Takes Two (1997) Good News (1997–98)


Something for Joey (1977) The Boy Who Drank Too Much
The Boy Who Drank Too Much
(1980) A Little Sex (1982) Just Between Friends
Just Between Friends
(1986) Clara's Heart
Clara's Heart
(1988) Night of the Twisters (1996) Christma