Deanne Barkley, who broke through the glass ceiling in network television to become an influential executive in the early 1970s, when few women had the power to develop prime-time programs, died April 2 in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. She was 82.
The cause was chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, said her son, Wilson Shirley.
Described by the Los Angeles Times in 1974 as having "more economic clout than probably any other woman in television," Barkley became vice president in charge of movies for ABC in 1972, responsible for lining up the concepts and talent to fill hundreds of prime-time hours with made-for-TV films.
"She was just terribly significant," said Mollie Gregory, a writer and producer whose 2002 book "Women Who Run the Show" chronicled the rise of women in Hollywood in the 1970s. "If you were struggling to sell material, everyone you met with then was a man . . . She was very influential for anyone who was striving to work" in TV.
-- Los Angeles Times