Stephen Cannell ’64 (1941-2010) created many of the crime dramas on television between 1070 and 1990, including The Rockford Files, Baretta, the Greatest American Hero, the A-Team and 21 Jump Street. He was ultimately responsible for more than 40 television shows. As the founder and namesake of Stephen J. Cannell Productions, he won an Emmy Award and two Writers Guild of America awards for his work, and at one point was the third-biggest producer on TV. He wrote more than 450 episodes and produced more than 1,500, all before changing tack in 1996 when he released the first of his 18 novels.
And he did it all while battling dyslexia so severe that he failed three grades before ever reaching high school. These struggles didn’t discourage him from pursuing his dream of being an author, which brought him to the School of Journalism and Communication.