Debbie Zipp, 55, hails from Overland Park, Kansas, where she was bitten by the acting bug at the early age of 5, but didn't come out of the closet with her 'disease' until Junior High with her first role of 'Ma' in It's Cold In Them Thar Hills. From then on she knew her destiny and so did her family, much to their happy dismay. She received her B.F.A. from U.S.I.U. School of Performing Arts and her M.F.A. from U.C.L.A.
She counts herself very lucky to have been able to make her living as an actress. A few of her leading stage roles in Los Angeles include Judy in the Victory Theatre production of Sirens of Seduction, 'Gracie' in Let's Get The Whole Thing Gershwin at the Westwood Playhouse and 'Debbie' in The Good One at the Pan Andreas. She's had lead series regular roles in the television series pilots The Cheerleaders and There's Always Room. She also starred with Darren McGavin in the series Small and Frye for Disney.
Television shows she has guest starred on include Magnum PI, Paper Chase, LA Law, New Love American Style, One Day At A Time, Gilmore Girls and Malcolm in the Middle. She's also appeared in such films as Like Father Like Son, One Day And A PC and Double Exposure. She's probably best known for her recurring lead role 'Donna' on the Murder She Wrote series starring Angela Lansbury as well as her principal roles in over 300 national television commercials.
Debbie continues to act; however, in recent years she was bitten by another bug -the producing bug. As President of the non-profit organization [email protected] WORK she helped lead the fight against ageism for women and fought to change the way the entertainment industry views and utilizes women over 40. After seeing the opportunities for work as an actress diminish greatly after she turned 40 she decided to try to change this fo herself, other actresses and all women of a certain age.
While President, ACTRESSES @ WORK produced 2 documentary shorts "Invisible Women" and "The Forgotten Grave", three PSA'S on ageism, and the stage production of "Magpies Tea Room". She was invited to speak at AARP in Washington DC and was a quest on the AARP radio show as well as a quest on the Larry Elder radio show on KABC Talk Radio. All of these efforts caught the attention of other major organizations like Institute for Mental Health Initiatives, Women in Film, Screen Actors Guild etc. as well as The Sunday London Times, Chicago Tribune, and the Los Angeles Times. More recently she has been a guest of Raven Blair Davis on Women Power Talk Radio, The Rolanda Watts Radio Show for Greenstone Media and a guest of Beverly Mahone on the Blog Talk Radio Show "Passions". She was also a guest speaker at the "Festival of Influence" with her "Believe It Baby" presentation. She has been inducted into the Boomer Diva Nation Walk of Fame and is extremely proud to have been asked to be an Inspirational Luminary by Inspire Me Today.
In order to further the cause of improving the images of women in the media and to pursue her new love of producing Debbie co founded with Jan Bina, Claire Callaway and Judith Drake the for-profit production company IN THE TRENCHES PRODUCTIONS whose films must star a woman over 40. With IN THE TRENCHES PRODUCTIONS she has produced the short films "Quick Soap", "Believe It Baby", "A Host of Trouble", "Forgotten Grave" (documentary short), "Living Large With Less", and "Transitions" and she looks forward to producing many more films that will resonate with women over 40. Debbie is probably most proud of creating and developing the IN THE TRENCHES PRODUCTIONS website, the first entertainment website for women over 40 on the internet, which she believes will be a catalyst for change and an inspiration to women over 40.
In her personal life she is proud of her volunteer work with animals and having served twice as a unit PTA President. Debbie is lucky to have the love and support of her wonderful husband, Michael Horton, and her two beautiful children, Cali and Trevor and her incredible parents, Ginny and Wilbur, who instilled in her so many of the essential values that she lives by today.
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