Actor Ron Silver, who won a Tony Award as a take-no-prisoners Hollywood producer in David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow and did a political about-face from loyal Democrat to Republican activist after the September 11 attacks, died Sunday at the age of 62. "Ron Silver died peacefully in his sleep with his family around him early Sunday morning" in New York City, said Robin Bronk, executive director of the Creative Coalition, which Silver helped found. "He had been fighting esophageal cancer for two years." Silver, an Emmy nominee for a recurring role as a slick strategist for liberal President Jed Bartlet on The West Wing, had a long history of balancing acting with left-leaning social and political causes. His big-screen credits included Ali, Reversal of Fortune, Enemies: A Love Story, Silkwood and Semi-Tough. Besides The West Wing, Silver was a regular or had recurring roles on such TV shows as Veronica's Closet, Chicago Hope and Wiseguy. He directed and costarred in the 1993 TV movie Lifepod, a science-fiction update of Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat. Born July 2, 1946, in New York City, Silver was the son of Irving and May Silver. His father worked in New York's garment industry and his mother was a teacher. Silver and ex-wife Lynne Miller had a son, Adam, and daughter, Alexandra.