Dan Gasby, television media sales executive, television producer, co-founder of the B. Smith retail brand and Alzheimer’s Caregiver
Prior to joining forces with B., Gasby had a highly successful television sales and production career that began in 1977 at a start up UHF television station, WPTY-TV, in Tennessee. In 1985, Gasby joined Camelot Advertising Sales, a division of KingWorld Entertainment, as an Account Executive, where his accounts included Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, and the Oprah Winfrey Show, the three most successful shows in the history of TV syndication.
In l989, Gasby created and co-produced Big Break, a musical variety show hosted by Natalie Cole that was the forerunner to “American Idol.” Gasby went on to produce the first televised Essence Awards in 1992, and served as Executive Producer for the 25th Anniversary Essence Awards celebration in 1995. That year, Gasby also served as Creator and Co-Executive Producer for the Newsweek American Achievement Awards, shot on location at The Kennedy Center.
By then, Gasby had married B. Smith and begun a remarkable collaboration, as her partner and producer, of B. Smith magazines, television shows, restaurants and books. First was B.Smith With Style, a weekly syndicated lifestyle program. Then came B. Smith Style magazine, and three highly successful books on entertaining. B. Smith’s restaurants were among the first – if not the first – to attract a completely diverse clientele, and were popular watering holes in Manhattan; Sag Harbor, NY; and Washington DC for well-known actors and entertainers. Gasby was the restaurants’ major domo, moving from one to the next, and helping B. charm the delighted guests. Unfortunately, because of B’s early onset Alzheimer’s, the restaurants have closed. Now Dan is working full-time as a spokesman for Alzheimer’s awareness – and particularly for understanding of the enormous challenges faced by Alzheimer’s caregivers.
He is co-author, with B. and Michael Shnayerson, of Before I Forget, published in January, 2016 by Harmony Books.