March 5, 2023

News Release: February 1, 2023

Television Writer-Producer Yvette Lee Bowser to Receive WGAW’s 2023 Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement

2023 Award Recipient

Television creator-showrunner Yvette Lee Bowser (Living Single) has been named the recipient of the Writers Guild of America West’s 2023 Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement, presented to a Guild member who has “advanced the literature of television and made outstanding contributions to the profession of the television writer.” She will be honored at the WGAW’s 2023 Writers Guild Awards ceremony on Sunday, March 5th.


“I’m deeply moved to join such distinguished company and to be acknowledged for telling diverse stories,” said Bowser. “There’s no greater professional reward than being seen by my peers.”

A WGAW member since 1988, Bowser began her career as an apprentice writer on the culture-shifting series A Different World. During her five years on the show, Bowser penned 25 episodes and firmly established the launch of her decades long career as a writer-producer. After a run with Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper, Bowser—at age 27—became the first Black female show creator with her groundbreaking series, Living Single. The show was the number one comedy in Black and Latino households for its entire five-year run and has maintained strong cultural significance through three decades of syndication and streaming.

Bowser quickly became a highly sought-after creator-showrunner, creating the multi-ethnic romantic comedy For Your Love and executive producing the popular series Half & Half. Her leadership experience led Bowser to consulting roles on the drama Lipstick Jungle and the iconic ABC series black-ish before helming the Netflix series Dear White People. She currently serves as executive producer and showrunner on the dramedy Unprisoned, set to premiere this March on Onyx for Hulu. 

Having produced nearly 600 episodes of television centered on diverse characters and stories, Bowser’s writing and producing expertise is matched by her dedication as a teacher and mentor. Eighteen years ago, Bowser helped launch the WGA Showrunner Training program, which continues to prepare some of today’s most prolific and successful writer-producers. Through the decades, her guidance has impacted hundreds within the industry and her storytelling has influenced millions throughout the world. 

Born in Philadelphia, Bowser was raised in Los Angeles and graduated from Stanford University, where she now sits on the Alumni Board. Stanford is also where Bowser became a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

Named after one of the most influential writers in entertainment history, the Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement is the WGAW’s highest award for television writing. Past Television Laurel Award recipients include Merrill Markoe, Jenji Kohan, Diane English, Aaron Sorkin, Steven Bochco, Susan Harris, Stephen J. Cannell, Shonda Rhimes, David Chase, Marta Kauffman & David Crane, Larry David, Garry Marshall, and Alison Cross.