Jane Nefeldt, Former Senior Executive at Writers Guild of America West, Dies at 71

Jane Nefeldt, former senior executive of the Writers Guild of America West, has died. She was 71. The WGAW said she died on April 16 in Hermosa Beach, Calif. No cause of death was specified.

Nefeldt began her 35-year long career with the guild in 1972 in the operations department, then advanced to assistant executive director in 1986 before being promoted to senior executive in 1998. She retired in 2007. She was involved in six contract negotiations cycles during her time with the WGAW.

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“Jane was a common sense professional who had an encyclopedic knowledge of the Guild contract. She educated two generations of Guild advocates. She was a zealous representative for Hollywood writers, who have collectively earned millions more dollars because of her decades of efforts. I benefitted greatly from working with her and knowing her,” said Chuck Slocum, WGAW assistant executive director.

Nefeldt was born on Sept. 24, 1952, in a suburb of Chicago. Former WGAW assistant executive director Ann Widdifield also made a statement on the death of Nefeldt.

“Jane was a force of nature. I met Jane in 1979 on my first day working at the WGAW. She mentored me and taught me the ropes. We hit it off immediately and stayed close friends and work colleagues over four decades,” she said. “At the Guild she was always one of the smartest people in the room. Staff, writers, and even company representatives relied on her expertise in interpretation of the Guild’s contract. Writers owe a large debt of gratitude for the innumerable ways she enriched their livelihoods. I will miss Jane dearly as my friend who made my life full of joy.”

Nefeldt is survived by her husband of 40 years, Denny. No memorial services have yet been announced.

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