Yvette Lee Bowser – Wikipedia

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American television writer and producer

Yvette Denise Lee Bowser (born 1965)[1] is an American television writer and producer. She wrote and produced the TV shows Living Single and Half & Half, and early in her career, worked on The Cosby Show spin-off A Different World. With Living Single, she became the first African-American woman to develop her own primetime series.[2]

Bowser started on A Different World in 1987 as one of a number of apprentices, rising in prominence in the production company over the years and eventually becoming producer by the 1991–92 season.[3] She left the show to take a position with Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper.

Bowser created her own company, Sister Lee Productions, which produced or co-produced her later shows, Living Single and Half & Half. She has said in an interview that she draws many of her characters and plots from her own and her friends’ personal experiences.[4] She has said, “I just basically rip pages out of my diary to tell stories on TV.”[5] In the case of Half & Half, for example, the writer based the characters Mona and Dee-Dee on herself and an older half-sister, and plot ideas came from her experience as the youngest child in a blended family.[5]

Through Sister Lee Productions, Bowser served as showrunner[6] for the critically acclaimed Netflix series Dear White People, adapted with Justin Simien from his film of the same name.
[7][8][9][10] In 2020, she became the showrunner on the Starz original series Run the World, created by Leigh Davenport.[11][12]

Personal life[edit]

Bowser lived in Philadelphia’s Carroll Park neighborhood until age 5, when she and her mother moved to California.[13] Bowser graduated from Santa Monica High School in 1983.[14] She attended with Holly Robinson, who was a part of the Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper cast and later starred in For Your Love.[15] Bowser also attended with her friend Lori Petty, whom she later cast in her sitcom Lush Life.[14]

After high school, Bowser attended Stanford University where, in spring 1986, she pledged the Xi Beta chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority.[16]

Yvette Lee married producer Kyle Bowser in 1994. The two worked together on Living Single, Half & Half, and For Your Love.[17]



  1. ^ Kranz, Rachel (2004). African-American Business Leaders and Entrepreneurs. Infobase Publishing. p. 23. ISBN 9781438107790. Retrieved 25 March 2020.
  2. ^ Gregory, Deborah. ““Yvette Lee Bowser: the sister who took ‘Living Single’ straight to the top! – African American television producer“. Essence. December 1994.
  3. ^ Brown, Malaika. (April–May 1995). “Sisterhood televised: Yvette Lee Bowser and the voices she listens to – creator and executive producer of the TV show, ‘Living Single’“. American Visions.
  4. ^ Perkins, Ken Parish (March 29, 1998). “Yvette Lee Bowser’s ‘For Your Love’ Breaks Sitcom Color Barriers“. Fort Worth News-Telegram. The Des Moines Register (Des Moines, Iowa).
  5. ^ a b Walker, Nicole (March 15, 2004). “Two sisters, two different moms—TV’s ‘half & half’ takes a fresh look at the blended black family“. Jet. Archived from the original on January 23, 2005.
  6. ^ Young, Danielle (27 April 2017). “From A Different World to Dear White People: Meet the Black-TV-Series Whisperer, Yvette Lee Bowser”. theroot.com. The Root. Retrieved 16 January 2019.
  7. ^ Dear White People (2017)”. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 22, 2018.
  8. ^ “Dear White People: Season 1 reviews”. Metacritic. Retrieved May 3, 2017.
  9. ^ Dear White People Season 2″. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved June 30, 2018.
  10. ^ “Dear White People: Season 2 reviews”. Metacritic. Retrieved June 3, 2018.
  11. ^ Low, Elaine (30 January 2020). “Starz Gives Series Order to Yvette Lee Bowser Comedy ‘Run the World’. variety.com. Variety. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  12. ^ Venable, Malcolm (14 June 2021). “Why Yvette Lee Bowser Wanted to Make ‘Run the World’. msn.com. MSN. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  13. ^ Shea, Kathleen (October 15, 1993). “A Single-minded Passion for Success“. Philadelphia Daily News. p. 83.
  14. ^ a b Pennington, Gail (July 22, 1996). “Fox Makes Plans for ‘Super’ Season“. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. p. 6E.
  15. ^ Bobbin, Jay (March 15, 1998). “Couples Live ‘For Your Love’“. The Palm Beach Post (West Palm Beach, Florida).
  16. ^ Xi Beta Legacy“. Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Xi Beta Chapter. 2016. Archived from the original on July 3, 2105.
  17. ^ Holmes, Kristin E.The Bible’s fresh voice, Philadelphia Inquirer, Nov. 4, 2006

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