Personalities: Cheryl Ladd, Pride of Huron

May 16, 2017

Cheryl Ladd as Kris Munroe in Charlie's Angels

She was one of Charlie's Angels, portrayed Grace Kelly in Princess Grace, and most recently played Robert Shapiro's wife in The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story.

Cheryl Ladd is arguably South Dakota's most famous female celebrity.

What you may not know is that she was once Cheryl Stoppelmoor, a talented youngster born and raised in Huron. Chuck Anderson, a native Huronian himself, naturally had to find out how the town contributed to her success.

On July 8th, 1995, he got that chance.

Cheryl was planning to visit Huron for a special commemoration, but instead had to prepare for a trip to Europe to promote her new show, One West Waikiki. 

Chuck understood and thanked her for trying.

He immediately jumped into questioning, asking what her favorite productions were. She had a particular one in mind.

Cheryl Ladd as Grace Kelly and Ian McShane as the Prince of Monaco

Chuck segued into the gamechanging role of Cheryl's career: Kris Munroe in Charlie's Angels. How did she get it?

She was daunted by the idea of replacing starlet Farrah Fawcett, an original Angel. So, she found a way to remove some of the pressure.

Charlie's Angels

Charlie's Angels was a weekly hour-long program which called for greater time and resources, something the audience never saw. Chuck was curious about a typical filming day.

In order for a star to be born, one must be uniquely skilled and passionate. Cheryl was discovered exhibiting those traits.

Cheryl Ladd in Satan's School for Girls

Cheryl intended to pursue singing in California, but her dancing and acting chops brought even more jobs. Not only does she owe gratitude to her arts training in Huron,...

...but she also honors grade school teachers who instilled character and discipline.

She says her father has been her hero.

Before becoming famous, Cheryl worked a few odd jobs in Huron and California.

She was fortunate enough to have jobs to fall back on, because the acting world is tough and unapologetic. Knowing this, Cheryl has advice for aspiring actors and actresses.

At the end of the interview, Chuck reminded Cheryl of the pride and love her hometown has for her.

A short time later, Chuck took on a project to see where Cheryl's teachers/mentors are now.

He says he's sitting with Ladd's favorite Spanish teacher, Karen Mueller.

He asks for a teacher's perspective on Ladd as a student, and only high praise is sufficient.

Being one of Cheryl Ladd's greatest mentors, Mueller felt responsible to share a bit of wisdom with the future actress to help keep her grounded. Cheryl did not heed the advice, and both women are actually glad.

The cast of Unforgettable
Credit People

Today, Cheryl Ladd is starring in the thriller Unforgettable with Katherine Heigl and Rosario Dawson. She continues to act in film and TV productions and is married to music producer Brian Russell.

Listen to Chuck Anderson's full interview with Cheryl Ladd here.

Chuck Anderson talked about his conversation with Cheryl Ladd during an interview with Lori Walsh on SDPB's "In the Moment" program.