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Marla Gibbs Celebrates Her 90th Birthday With Friends And Family

(Top L-R): Mayor James Butts, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Sheila Frazier, Beverly Todd, Kathleen Bradley, Judy Pace, Councilmember Curren Price, Jr., and Earnest Harden (Bottom L-R): Jackee Harry, Marla Gibbs, and former State Senator Diane Watson Photo Credit: Ian Foxx Media Group

Marla Gibbs (born Margaret Theresa Bradley; June 14, 1931) is an actress, singer, comedian, writer and television producer, whose career spans five decades celebrated her birthday at Peter Georges’ Conference Room Restaurant & Bar in Playa Vista and the party was sponsored by family friend and businessman Henry Woods, founder of HNW International Corporation, an international Consulting/Connector Firm, along with Lemuel Daniels, Peter George, and others.  

An all-star cast of Marla’s friends and children that attend the birthday celebration included; Beverly Todd, Judy Pace, Earnest Harden, Jr., Kathleen Bradley, Sheila Frazier, former State Senator Diane Watson, Jackee Harry, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Tico Wells, Attorney Frank K. Wheaton, and Marla’s children; Angela, Amil, Dorian, and Jordan Gibbs.  A host of politicians presented proclamations and kind words to Marla, present were Mayor James Butts, Councilmember Curren Price, Jr, Senator Sydney Kamlager and Commissioner Jackie Hawthorne, along with representatives for Congresswoman Karen Bass, Mayor Eric Garcetti, LA Supervisor Janice Hahn, and Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. Actors Bill Duke and Lou Gossett, Jr. were not able to attend, however, in their absences sent Marla flowers.  

Guest mixed and mingled and dined on a lavish display of passed hors d’oeuvres of cauliflower wings, brussels sprouts, lamb meat balls, along with a buffet dinner which included; seafood pasta, penne Norma, flatbread, crispy chicken paillard, and a green salad.  Followed by a music video and serving of a delicious birthday cake, as everyone sang happy birthday to Marla.  

Marla simply said, “Thank you and this is my 30th birthday celebration!”

Gibbs is known for her role as George Jefferson’s maid, Florence Johnston, in the CBS sitcom, “The Jeffersons” (1975–1985), for which she received five nominations for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She also starred in the show’s spin-off “Checking In” (1981) and the NBC sitcom, “227” (1985–1990); Gibbs co-produced the latter series, played the lead role of Mary Jenkins, and sang the theme song.  

Gibbs has won seven NAACP Image Awards. In later years, Gibbs played supporting roles in films “The Meteor Man” (1993), “Lost & Found” (1999), “The Visit” (2000), “The Brothers” (2001), “Madea’s Witness Protection” (2012), “Grantham & Rose” (2015), and “Lemon”(2017) and the TV show “Station 19” (2018).   

In 2015, Gibbs made two appearances in the Shonda Rhimes’ drama series, “Scandal.” She later guest starred on “Hot in Cleveland,” “American Horror Story: Hotel.” and “This Is Us.” In 2018, she was cast in a recurring role on the ABC drama series “Station 19.” Gibbs also has had starring roles in two television pilots: “Old Soul” alongside Ellen Burstyn and Rita Moreno for NBC in 2014, and ABC’s “alen Vs. Everybody” in 2017. In film, she co-starred in “Lemon” and “Please Stand By.” Gibbs owned a jazz club in South Central L.A. called Marla’s Memory Lane Jazz and Supper Club from 1981 to 1999. As a singer, she released a number of albums. In 2019, Gibbs reprised her role as Florence on “Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s All in the Family and The Jeffersons,” less than a month before her 88th birthday.

About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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