ABC Family

Women Behind the Scenes Spotlight: Brenda Hampton

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Today’s Women Behind the Scenes spotlight is focused on series creator, TV writer and executive producer Brenda Hampton.

Brenda grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and later studied journalism at the University of Georgia. After graduation she worked as a technical writer for the U.S. Navy, writing speeches, technical manuals and corporate newsletters. But it was in the 80’s that she moved to Los Angeles and starting writing for the short-lived NBC comedy Sister Kate. After that she has a short stint on the CBS comedy Baghdad Café (which starred Whoopi Goldberg).

Throughout the early part of the 90’s she worked as a writer on such comedies as Lenny, Blossom, The John Larroquette Show and Mad About You. In 1994 she worked with David Landsberg to develop and executive producer the CBS series Daddy’s Girls that starred Keri Russell (Felicity) in her first main TV role alongside the late Dudley Moore.

A few years later, she would create one of the longest-running family TV shows to air on the WB (sans The CW): 7th Heaven. The series ran for an amazing 11 seasons on the network; but that didn’t stop Brenda. While 7th Heaven was in its early years, Brenda also worked as an executive consultant/developer on the short-lived 1998 series Love Boat: The Next Wave and the short-lived series Safe Harbor (that starred Chyler Leigh, who went on to fame in Grey’s Anatomy and legendary actor Gregory Harrison).

In 2005, Brenda worked with Kirstie Alley as co-creator, executive producer and writer on the latter’s satirical look at her own life in the short-lived comedy Fat Actress.

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And, then in 2008, as 7th Heaven came to an end, Brenda created yet another family based series, this time for ABC Family: The Secret Life of the American Teenager.

In February of 2010, Brenda was awarded the Francis M. Wheat Community Service Award for her work as a child advocate and for her work on The Secret Life of the American Teenager.

Brenda is also the mother of three adopted children.

Using her favorite online handle, Rueben is an East Coast-bred gal who is now a permanent Californian and a lifelong tv-oholic. She watches at least 25 TV shows a week, goes to the movies as often as possible, listens to music every waking moment, reads every day and “plays” on the internet every chance she can. Some of her current favorite TV shows are Outlander, Arrow, Grimm, The Blacklist, Teen Wolf, Killjoys, Dark Matter, The Shannara Chronicles, Good Witch, When Calls the Heart, The 100, Switched at Birth, Jane the Virgin, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., The Flash and The Fosters (among others). She is looking forward to the debut of No Tomorrow this fall and the limited-run returns of Prison Break and 24: Legacy. Follow her at @ruebenrambling or contact her at rueben@nicegirlstv.com.