Frank Bonner

Frank Bonner

79 (passed away Jun. 16th, 2021)
Feb. 28th, 1942
Born in
Little Rock, Arkansas, USA

Frank Bonner's Main TV Roles

Show Character(s)
WKRP in Cincinnati TV Show
WKRP in Cincinnati
Just the Ten of Us TV Show
Just the Ten of Us
Sidekicks TV Show
The Duck Factory TV Show
The Duck Factory

Main Movie Roles

Guest TV Roles

[none found]


Frank Bonner was best known for playing sales manager Herb Tarlek on the television sitcom WKRP in Cincinnati.

Frank Bonner is an American actor and director, with a career spanning nearly 40 years. Born Frank Woodrow Boers, Jr., to musician parents in Arkansas, he adopted the screen name “Frank Bonner.” He was known by his screen name for most of his career.

Following high school, he joined the US Navy for 4 years, before moving to Los Angeles and beginning his acting career with stage plays. He received his first professional break with the play The Only Bathtub in Cassis but his real break came with him being cast as the outrageous Herb Tarlek in the 1978 TV series WKRP in Cincinnati.

He has numerous acting and directorial projects to his credit, including Sidekicks, Head of the Class, Just the Ten of Us, Scarecrow and Mrs. King, Saved by the Bell and City Guys to name a few. However, his portrayal of Herb would remain his best-loved and best-known role for decades. Such was its popularity that it even inspired a song and music video by the Canadian band Rheostatics.

Bonner’s family confirmed that the actor died as a result of complications from Lewy body dementia.

  • The Canadian rock group, 'Rheostatics', wrote a song about his _"WKRP in Cincinnati" (1978)_ (qv) character "Herb Tarlek". Bonner also starred in the music video.
  • His ex-wife, 'Lillian Garrett' (qv), guest-starred on his TV series, _"WKRP in Cincinnati" (1978)_ (qv).

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