Joan Van Ark is an American actress, most notable for her role as Valene Ewing in the primetime soap opera Knots Landing. A life member of The Actors Studio, she has also received a Theatre World Award and been nominated for a Tony Award for her stage work.
Van Ark began her professional stage career in 1963 at the Guthrie Theater, Minneapolis, appearing in The Miser and Death of a Salesman. She made her Broadway debut in 1966 in Barefoot in the Park and received a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Play in 1971 for The School for Wives.
She landed her most famous role of Valene Ewing in 1978, first on the CBS series Dallas, then for thirteen seasons on its spin-off Knots Landing. For this role, she twice won the Soap Opera Digest Award for Best Actress, in 1986 and 1989. She left the show in 1992, although she did return for the final episode of the series in 1993 and for the 1997 miniseries Knots Landing: Back to the Cul-de-Sac. In 1985, she received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination as host of the Tournament of Roses Parade on CBS. From 2004-2005, she starred in the soap opera The Young And the Restless.