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Farewell to a Legend: CESD Talent Agency Founder Bill Cunningham Passes Away at 96

Bill Cunningham, CESD Founder, Dies At 96

Bill Cunningham, the visionary founder of CESD Talent Agency, has passed away at the age of 96. With a career spanning over half a century, he built an esteemed agency that represents some of the biggest names in Hollywood. The news of his passing was announced by the agency, revealing that he peacefully passed away at his residence in West Hollywood on July 15.

Bill Cunningham, A Singer And Founder Of CESD Talent Agency: A Legacy of Hollywood History

Source: Carlo Allergie/Reuters

CESD Talent Agency, formerly Cunningham & Associates, is a powerhouse in the entertainment industry. Led by Ken Slevin and Paul Doherty, it represents diverse talent in commercials, voice-over, print, digital, theatrical/TV-film, and young performers. With 32 agents across offices in LA and NY, CESD continues to nurture top talents.

Bill Cunningham, born on January 2, 1927, in San Francisco, pursued his Hollywood dreams after serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II. He showcased his exceptional singing talent on TV shows like NBC’s Voices of Walter Schumann and The Tennessee Ernie Ford Show.

Source: Scott Schuman, The Sartorialist / Penguin Press)

Additionally, he became the original voice of Ken, Barbie’s boyfriend, for Mattel Toys, and sang on various movie soundtracks. His musical journey included tours with Judy Garland and Dinah Shore, and he recorded an album, “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows,” with support from Fred Astaire.

Bill Cunningham: A Pioneer in Talent Agency Business

Source: CESN

Bill Cunningham founded Pacific Artists Agency in the 1960s, which later became Cunningham & Associates. With determination and ingenuity, he personally promoted talents to top ad agencies. With offices in LA, New York, and Chicago, the agency excelled as a top bicoastal commercial/VO talent agency.

In 1989, Cunningham retired, leaving behind a legacy of success and style. His autobiography, “I Wonder What Became of Me,” was published in 2014, chronicling his remarkable journey.