Remembering Barbara Baldavin: A Star Trek Legacy and Beyond 


Actress Barbara Baldavin, known for her roles in the iconic sci-fi series Star Trek and the medical drama Medical Center, passed away on Sunday, March 31, 2024, at her home in Manhattan Beach, California. She was 85 years old.

Baldavin’s career spanned across television and film, with notable appearances both in front of the camera and behind the scenes in casting. Her journey began on the stage while attending El Camino College and later studying at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Institute.

Remembering Barbara Baldavin
Remembering Barbara Baldavin

A Starfleet Wedding Interrupted: Baldavin’s Trek Appearances

Trekkies will remember Baldavin for her portrayal of phaser control officer Angela Martine in two pivotal episodes of Star Trek: The Original Series first season. In the episode “Balance of Terror,” her character’s wedding to Starfleet officer Robert Tomlinson (played by Stephen Mines) is tragically interrupted by a Romulan attack, showcasing the ever-present dangers faced by the crew of the USS Enterprise.

Baldavin later returned to the Star Trek universe for the series finale, “Turnabout Intruder,” which aired in 1969. This time, she took on the role of Lt. Lisa, a communications officer and court reporter, demonstrating her acting versatility.

A Recurring Role in Medical Center and Beyond

Beyond Star Trek, Baldavin landed a recurring role as Nurse Holmby on the long-running medical drama Medical Center. She appeared in a staggering 51 episodes across the show’s final six seasons (1970-1976), working alongside actors Chad Everett and James Daly. Interestingly, she had previously appeared on the show’s first season in a different role, showcasing her range as an actress.

From Actress to Casting Director: Shaping Television

Following her acting career, Baldavin transitioned into the world of casting, leveraging her industry experience to shape future television shows. Her keen eye for talent landed her roles in the casting departments of prestigious shows like Dynasty, Matt Houston, and Trapper John, M.D.

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This shift behind the scenes allowed Baldavin to play a crucial role in discovering and nurturing upcoming actors, contributing significantly to the television landscape of the 1980s.

A Life Well Lived: Beyond the Spotlight

Born in Quincy, Massachusetts, on October 18, 1938, Baldavin’s passion for acting blossomed during her college years in California. She was close friends with actress Dawn Wells, best known for her role as Mary Ann on Gilligan’s Island – a friendship solidified by their shared birthday.

Outside of her professional life, Baldavin was a dedicated instructor at Dawn Wells’ Film Actor’s Boot Camp, sharing her knowledge and experience with aspiring actors. She is survived by her sons, Joseph and Marc D’Agosta, and her grandchildren, Casandra and Justine. Her former husband, Joseph D’Agosta, who served as casting director on Star Trek and other Desilu productions, predeceased her.

Early Life and Career Beginnings

Hailing from Quincy, Massachusetts, Barbara Baldavin discovered her passion for acting while attending El Camino College in Torrance, California. She honed her craft at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Institute, laying the foundation for a successful career in the entertainment industry.

Iconic Roles on ‘Star Trek’ and ‘Medical Center’

Baldavin made her mark on television screens with memorable appearances on the original ‘Star Trek series. In 1966, she portrayed Angela Martine, the phaser control officer, in two first-season episodes. Her character’s wedding to Starfleet officer Robert Tomlinson presided over by Captain Kirk, remains etched in the hearts of fans.

She later returned to ‘Star Trek’ as Lieutenant Lisa, a communications officer, in the series finale “Turnabout Intruder” in 1969. Baldavin’s versatility shone through as she effortlessly transitioned between different roles, leaving a lasting impression on audiences.

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Baldavin’s stint on ‘Star Trek’ was just the beginning of her illustrious television career. She went on to portray Nurse Holmby in 51 episodes of ‘Medical Center’, captivating viewers with her compelling performances. Her contributions to the show during its last six seasons solidified her status as a talented actress.

Transition to Casting and Legacy

In the 1980s, Barbara Baldavin embarked on a new chapter in her career, transitioning to the casting department of various television shows. From ‘Hagen’ to ‘Dynasty’ and ‘Trapper John, M.D.’, she played a pivotal role in shaping the ensemble casts of these beloved series. Her keen eye for talent and dedication to her craft left an indelible mark on the industry.

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