Born in Wahpeton, North Dakota, Sam Anderson got his degree from the University of North Dakota before setting out for Hollywood in the late 1970s. Sam's four years teaching theatre at a community college was to be the backbone for his ongoing acting workshops later in his life. He began his acting career with small one shot roles but then got his first real break on "WKRP in Cincinnati" (CBS 1978-82), on which he played several guest roles over the course of its run. Anderson credited the show's creator, Hugh Wilson, with understanding and supporting the importance of actors who could make supporting characters into more than just background color. Throughout the 1980s, Anderson worked regularly in television and made occasional appearances in films, including the Richie Valens biopic "La Bamba" (1987). During this period, he had a recurring role in "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (Syndicated 1987-1994) as the assistant manager of the Royale Hotel, which made him a regular on the convention circuit.During the 1990s, Anderson took on recurring roles in three prominent series, the Alan Thicke vehicle "Growing Pains" (ABC 1985-1992), the samll town comedy-drama "Picket Fences" (CBS 1992-96) and the slapstick family sitcom "Perfect Strangers" (ABC 1986-1993). He expanded his repertoire with voice work on video games and animated series, including "Rugrats" (Nickelodeon 1991-2004), and also appeared in the blockbuster hit "Forrest Gump" (1994). Anderson ran acting workshops at various colleges in the Los Angeles area and in 2004 took became Co-Artistic Director for The Road Theatre Company in Los Angeles. That same year, he began his recurring role as former dentist Bernard Nadler on "Lost" (ABC 2004-2010). He continued to take on character roles in such shows as "NCIS: Los Angeles" (CBS 2009-) and "Scandal" (ABC, 2012-), and did an increasing amount of film work, including roles in the drama "Water for Elephants" (2011) and the horror film "Devil's Due"(2014).