With fond memories, Sunnylands mourns the passing of legendary television producer Norman Lear

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands offers its heartfelt condolences to the legions of fans who admired the work of television producer Norman Lear.  The creator of groundbreaking shows, such as “All in the Family,” “The Jeffersons,” and “Maude,” died Dec. 5 at the age of 101.

Sunnylands enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Mr. Lear.  He visited the estate in late 2018 to attend a three-day retreat, Imagining a Culture of Health, that was convened to brainstorm ideas for improving American health outcomes.  The Norman Lear Center, based at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, sponsored the gathering along with Sunnylands and The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Participants in the retreat, Imagining a Culture of Health, in 2018.
Norman Lear with his book, Even This I Get to Experience, at Sunnylands in 2015.

Mr. Lear attended a second retreat on the topic that was held virtually in 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic. The Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania joined that convening as a retreat sponsor.

Prior to the retreats, in February 2015, Mr. Lear attended a lunch at Sunnylands in celebration of his recently released memoir, Even This I Get to Experience. Afterward, the legendary television producer spoke about his book and his life in a conversation with then-Sunnylands President Geoffrey Cowan at the Rancho Mirage Public Library.