James Reynolds (born August 10, 1946) is a longtime American dramatic actor.
Reynolds originated the character of Abe Carver on the long running NBC dramatic serial Days of Our Lives in 1981, which he has played since then. He has been on contract with the show since 1981 with only two short breaks in 1991 and 2003 where he still appeared as a recurring character. He is the only actor to play the role of Abe Carver. Before appearing on Days of our Lives, he had previously appeared in the short lived 1979 CBS series Time Express.
After serving as stalwart police commander Abe Carver on Days of our Lives for nine years, Reynolds moved to the new series, Generations in 1991 to play powerful business tycoon Henry Marshall, replacing actor Taurean Blacque in the role. He was rewarded for his powerful portrayal with an Emmy nomination as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series. With the subsequent demise of that series, Reynolds was invited to return to Days where he was promoted in rank to Chief and named the top law enforcement official in Salem, the mythical community which is home to Days of our Lives.
Reynolds was born in Oskaloosa, Kansas. In high school, the subjects he enjoyed most were English and History. With a small student body, there was never any shortage of extracurricular activities and, in addition to performing in many school plays, he became very active in sports, playing football, basketball, and track.
Following graduation from high school, Reynolds joined the Marines. After boot camp he was assigned to the Information Service Office where, first stationed in Hawaii, he became a reporter for the service newspaper, The Windward Marine. Later he was sent to Vietnam and served for almost a year with a variety of units in and around Chu Lai, adding battlefield reporting to his combat duties.
Returning to the States, Reynolds enrolled in Topeka's Washburn University, majoring in prelaw and journalism. Advised that the best place on campus to meet girls was the theater department, he began auditioning and performing in plays. In addition to his improved social life, Reynolds reaped another unexpected benefit—he discovered a passion for acting. He went on to appear not only in regular campus productions of musicals and dramatic plays, but with local theater groups as well.
One of Reynolds' greatest honors is being named to the Kansas Historical Society's list of famous Kansans, a list that includes such notables as President Dwight Eisenhower, Amelia Earhart, Langston Hughes, Barry Sanders, and many others.
Deeply committed to his charitable work, Reynolds has been involved in more than 300 fund raising events in the last ten years. He annually hosts a "Bowl-a-thon" in Los Angeles to benefit the National Asthma Center and a celebrity basketball game in South Pasadena for the city's schools.
His son Jed is a student at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
James is listed in Who's Who in Entertainment, Who's Who Among African-Americans, Who's Who in Business, and Who's Who International.
Reynolds is an active sportsman, enjoying basketball and racquetball on his days off. He, his wife Lissa Layng Reynolds and son Jed reside in South Pasadena, California.