Executive Producer and Showrunner of CBS’ The Talk, Heather Gray Dies at Age 50

By A.J. Katz 

Executive producer and showrunner of CBS’ The Talk, Heather Gray, died in Los Angeles over the weekend at the age of 50.

CBS stated that Gray was “bravely battling an unforgiving disease,” but did not disclose additional details concerning cause of death.

A veteran producer on The Tyra Banks Show, Gray joined The Talk midway through its inaugural season in 2010 as senior supervising producer. She was promoted to co-ep the following year and eventually named executive producer of the daytime talker in 2019.


Gray earned two Daytime Emmy Awards, for best talk show, entertainment, in 2016 and 2018, along with an NAACP Image Award in 2016.

Staff from The Talk received a memo (included below) concerning the tragic death of Gray. It’s signed by CBS president and CEO George Cheeks, CBS Studios president David Stapf, CBS Network Entertainment president Kelly Kahl, CBS Network Entertainment senior executive vp programming Thom Sherman, CBS Network Entertainment executive vp current programs Amy Reisenbach and CBS Network Entertainment senior vp daytime programs Laurie Seidman.

Dear Talk Family,

On behalf of all of us at CBS, we want to extend our deep condolences to you for the painful loss of our beloved Heather. She was an inspiration to us all, living and thriving while bravely battling an unforgiving disease. She showed us what true courage looks like.

Heather has been the heart and soul of “The Talk” from day one. Her brilliance as an innovative producer was only outmatched by her huge smile and infectious laugh. She was an admired, beloved mama bear of your family and a leader that all looked up to. Her contributions to the success of the show are immeasurable, but more importantly, she was a boss that proved you can lead with kindness, caring and friendship. Heather was everyone’s friend, everyone’s champion, everyone’s favorite person on the set. We will miss her terribly.

We recognize and share the pain and shock you are feeling at this moment, as well as the grief you will feel in the days ahead. While the show is starting its hiatus as of August 1 (Monday), we do not want you to grieve and mourn alone. The set will be open, and HR will have staff and grief counseling available in person and by phone. HR support will be on site as well. We understand how difficult this will be for all of you and want you to all know, that we are here for you.

George, Kelly, David, Thom, Amy, Laurie