(written from a Production point of view)
Hailing from Haverhill, Massachusetts, Joseph Ruskin (born 14 April 1924; age 89) (born Joseph Schlafman) has appeared in every Star Trek series except Star Trek: The Next Generation (though he did appear in a Next Generation feature film). With the exception of Majel Barrett, who has appeared in every "Star Trek" series, he is the only actor to appear in all four of the series in question. Furthermore, given that Barrett only provided the computer voice in Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Enterprise, Ruskin is the only actor to appear on screen in all four series. He also appeared in two Star Trek video games, lending his voice to Master Si'tann in Star Trek: Hidden Evil (1999) and to Admiral Nolotai and Vulcan Master N'Kal in Star Trek: Away Team (2001).
He has had a long and distinguished career, appearing in TV shows as early as 1959. More recently, he had a recurring role as "Alliance Member Alain Christophe" in J.J. Abrams's TV series Alias, as well as playing an elderly mob boss in Smokin' Aces, which featured Chris Pine.
Ruskin, like William Schallert, Barry Gordon and Kitty Swink have all served on the Screen Actors Guild Executive Board of Directors and then have become Trustees at the Screen Actors Guild Pension and Health Plan.
Along with Majel Barrett, Clint Howard, Jack Donner and Vince Deadrick, he is one of only five actors to appear in both Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek: Enterprise. He, Barrett and Howard also appeared in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
Other projects in which Ruskin appeared with fellow Trek performers include:
- The Magnificent Seven with Whit Bissell and John A. Alonzo (1960)
- The Twilight Zone episode "To Serve Man" with Dave Armstrong, Theo Marcuse and James Wellman (1962)
- The Outer Limits episode "Production and Decay of Strange Particles" with Leonard Nimoy, Rudy Solari, Barry Russo, Willard Sage, Robert Fortier and Vic Perrin, make-ups by Fred Phillips and Robert H. Justman as production manager (1964)
- The Time Tunnel episode "Revenge of the Gods" with James Darren, Whit Bissell, Lee Meriwether, Paul Carr and Abraham Sofaer (1966)
- The Streets of San Francisco episode "The Most Deadly Species" with Vince Howard and Steve Sandor (1974)
- Planet of the Apes episode "The Tyrant" with Percy Rodrigues, Mark Lenard, Gary Combs, Ron Stein and Tom Troupe, directed by Ralph Senensky with cinematography by Jerry Finnerman (1974)