Ron Silver, a distinguished actor-activist who carved out his niche on television, movies and in Broadway, died on Sunday at 62 from esophageal cancer.
Colleague Robin Bronk, executive director of the Creative Coalition, said: "Ron Silver died peacefully in his sleep with his family around him early Sunday morning" in his native New York City.
Silver's impressive resume included notable roles in TV's The West Wing, Chicago Hope and Veronica's Closet; films Reversal Of Fortune, Ali, Enemies: A Love Story, Silkwood and Semi-Tough; and the Broadway rendition of David Mamet's Speed The Plow, for which he won a Tony award in 1988.
Also known for his political activism, the fiercely intelligent and opinionated Silver, then a lifelong Democrat, raised eyebrows when he pledged his support to George W. Bush and the Republican party after 9/11; he would speak in support of Bush at the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York.
"He was a talented actor, a scholar and a great believer in participatory democracy," Bronk said. "He was an activist who became a great artist and his contributions will never be forgotten."