|S. Epatha Merkerson|
|Born||Sharon Epatha Merkerson|
November 28, 1952
Saginaw, Michigan, USA
S. For the town in Argentina, see 28 de Noviembre. Events Year 1952 ( MCMLII) was a Leap year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Michigan ( is a Midwestern state of the United States of America. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Epatha Merkerson (born Sharon Epatha Merkerson on November 28, 1952) is an American Golden Globe-, Screen Actors Guild- and Emmy Award-winning actress. For the town in Argentina, see 28 de Noviembre. Events Year 1952 ( MCMLII) was a Leap year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The Golden Globe Awards are American awards for motion pictures and Television programs given out each year during a formal dinner The Screen Actors Guild ( SAG) is an American labor union representing over 120000 Film and television principal performers and background An actor, actress, player or thespian (see terminology) is a person who Acts in a Dramatic production and who works She has also received two Tony Award nominations. The Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as the Tony Awards, recognize achievement in live American Theatre and are presented She is known for her roles as Reba the Mail Lady on Pee Wee's Playhouse in the 1980s, and as the no-nonsense supervisor, Lt. Anita Van Buren (1993-present) on the long-running television crime drama Law & Order. Pee-wee's Playhouse is a Children's television program starring Paul Reubens as the child-like Pee-wee Herman. Lt Anita Van Buren is a Fictional character on NBC 's long running drama Law & Order, portrayed by S Television ( TV) is a widely used Telecommunication medium for sending ( Broadcasting) and receiving moving Images, either monochromatic Law & Order is an American Police procedural and Legal drama television series created by Dick Wolf. She has appeared on the show longer than any other cast member. She was the first actor to appear in 300 episodes.
Merkerson, the youngest of five children, was born in Saginaw, Michigan, the daughter of Ann Merkerson, who at the time was the only female in the vehicles operation unit at the Detroit Post Office. Michigan ( is a Midwestern state of the United States of America. Her father worked in a factory.  Merkerson's parents separated in 1957. Merkerson graduated from Cooley High School in 1970. Thomas M Cooley High School is located at the intersection of Hubbell and Fenkell Avenue on the northwest side of Detroit Michigan. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from Wayne State University and began her New York theater career in 1978. In the USA the Bachelor of Fine Arts, usually abbreviated BFA, is the standard Undergraduate degree for students seeking a professional education in the Wayne State University is located in Detroit, Michigan, in the city's Midtown Cultural Center. New York ( is a state in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States and is the nation's third most populous 
She has said she preferred the name "Epatha" to "Sharon", and so legally changed her first name to S. 
Merkerson made her television debut as Reba the Mail Lady on Pee Wee's Playhouse, and has appeared on The Cosby Show, among other series. Pee-wee's Playhouse is a Children's television program starring Paul Reubens as the child-like Pee-wee Herman. The Cosby Show is an American television Situation comedy starring Bill Cosby, first airing on September 20, 1984  Her single most important television appearance may have been in the first-season Law and Order episode "Mushrooms", in which she portrayed the grief-stricken mother of an 11-month-old boy who is shot accidentally. Her performance was not only memorable to the audience during that key first season, but also impressed the producers enough to select Merkerson to replace Dann Florek as detective squad chief in the series' fourth season. Dann Florek (born Ezekial Dann Florek on May 1, 1950 in Flat Rock, Michigan) is an American Actor and
Merkerson was nominated for a Tony Award as Best Featured Actress in a Play for her performance as Berniece in August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, The Piano Lesson and won an Obie Award in 1992 for her work in I'm Not Stupid. The Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as the Tony Awards, recognize achievement in live American Theatre and are presented August Wilson ( April 27, 1945 – October 2, 2005) was an American Playwright. The Pulitzer Prize, ˈpʊlɨtsɚ PULL-it-sər is an American award regarded as the highest national honor in Newspaper journalism, The Piano Lesson is a play by American Playwright August Wilson, the fourth in his series ''The Pittsburgh Cycle''. The Obie Awards or Off-Broadway Theater Awards are annual awards bestowed by The Village Voice newspaper to Off-Broadway Theater  Her screen credits include Jacob's Ladder, Loose Cannons, She's Gotta Have It and in James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day, in which she played the terrified wife of Joe Morton. Jacob's Ladder is a 1990 Psychological horror Film directed by Adrian Lyne, based on a Screenplay by Bruce Joel Rubin Not to be confused with the Los Angeles AM sportsradio talk show She's Gotta Have It is a 1986 Comedy - Drama film written and directed by Spike Lee. James Francis Cameron (born August 16, 1954) is an Academy Award -winning Canadian - American director Terminator 2 Judgment Day, commonly abbreviated as T2, is a 1991 action / Science fiction film directed co-written Joseph Morton Jr (born October 18, 1947) is an American stage television and film actor In 2006, she won Golden Globe, Emmy and Screen Actors Guild awards for her performance in the television movie Lackawanna Blues, her first starring role. The Golden Globe Awards are American awards for motion pictures and Television programs given out each year during a formal dinner The Screen Actors Guild ( SAG) is an American labor union representing over 120000 Film and television principal performers and background Lackawanna Blues is an American Play written by Ruben Santiago-Hudson in 2001  In 2007, she starred on stage in Los Angeles in William Inge's Come Back, Little Sheba at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in the role made famous by Shirley Booth, and in January 2008 opened on Broadway in the production. William Motter Inge (ˈɪndʒ "inj" –) was an American playwright and novelist whose works typically feature solitary protagonists encumbered with This article is about the play by William Inge For its film and television adaptations see Come Back Little Sheba. Shirley Booth ( August 30 1898 – October 16 1992) was an American Actress. For the revival of Come Back, Little Sheba, Merkerson earned her second Tony nomination. This article is about the play by William Inge For its film and television adaptations see Come Back Little Sheba.
Merkerson is an outspoken advocate against smoking and for lung cancer research and awareness. Tobacco Smoking is the inhalation of smoke from burned dried or cured leaves of the Tobacco plant most often in the form of a Cigarette. Lung cancer is a Disease of uncontrolled Cell growth in tissues of the Lung. When she guest-hosted on The View on March 2, 2007, she discussed her 23-year addiction to smoking, which ended in the early '90s after she woke up one morning unable to breathe. The View is an Emmy Award -winning American Talk show created by Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie and broadcast on Until May 2007, she sat on the Board of Directors of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.
Merkerson is often reticent about revealing what her first name really is — Sharon. On the June 11, 2005 episode of NPR's Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, she jokingly claimed that the initial "S," "stands for 'Sweet' [because] so many people have difficulty with Epatha, which is what I prefer to be called. Wait Wait… Don't Tell Me! is an hour-long weekly radio News quiz Game show produced by Chicago Public Radio and National Public Radio " She lives in Harlem, New York City.
For her role as Van Buren on Law & Order, she actually wears a wig. Law & Order is an American Police procedural and Legal drama television series created by Dick Wolf. Her real hair is made up in short dreadlocks. Dreadlocks, also called locks or dreads, are interlocked coils of Hair which form by themselves in all hair types if the hair is allowed to grow naturally Merkerson decided to wear a wig for the role to look more "professional".
In November 2007, Merkerson appeared in a TV commercial for Coricidin HBP. A television advertisement or television commercial (often just commercial or advert (US or ad (UK is a span of television programming produced Coricidin, Coricidin 'D' (decongestant or CoricidinHBP (for h igh b lood p ressure is the name of a drug marketed by Schering-Plough
Relationships: Toussaint L. Jones - Ex-husband
College: Wayne State University, Detroit, MI (BFA in Theatre, 1976)
for Shirley Valentine
|Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play|
for The Piano Lesson
for Lost in Yonkers
for The Lion in Winter
|Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Actress - Miniseries or Television Movie|
for Lackawanna Blues
for Elizabeth I
for The Lion in Winter
|Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Mini-series or Motion Picture Made for Television|
for Lackawanna Blues
for Elizabeth I