Kennedy speaks at the National Election Integrity Conference in 2017
Mary Claire Kennedy
September 25, 1948
Rochester, New York, U.S.
Mary Claire "Mimi" Kennedy (born September 25, 1948) is an American actress, author, and activist, best known for her performances in television comedies. She co-starred in a number of short-lived sitcoms before her role as Ruth Sloan on Homefront (1991–93). Kennedy is known for her role as Abby O'Neil in the sitcom Dharma & Greg (1997–2002). In film, Kennedy appeared in Pump Up the Volume (1990), Erin Brockovich (2000), In the Loop (2009), Due Date (2010), Midnight in Paris (2011), and The Five-Year Engagement (2012). She is currently a series regular on the sitcom Mom, for which she received a Critics' Choice Television Award nomination.
Kennedy was born in Rochester, New York, the daughter of Nancy Helen (née Colgan) and Daniel Gerald Kennedy. She got her start in theater with the Rochester Community Players, appearing in Agatha Christie's Spider Web in October 1960 when she was 12 years old. She was raised in Rochester, where she graduated in 1966 from Our Lady of Mercy High School. In the 1970s, she was in the musical Rhinegold, featuring songs by her friend Jim Steinman. She attended Smith College.
Kennedy began her career appearing in the Broadway musical Grease, and in 1977 landed a part in the short-lived variety series 3 Girls 3, with Debbie Allen and Ellen Foley. She later played the role of Stockard Channing's sister in the short-lived Stockard Channing in Just Friends (1979), and she was a regular on The Big Show (1980). During the 1980s, she starred in a number of short-lived sitcoms, including The Two of Us (1981–82), Spencer (1984–85), and Family Man (1988). She also co-starred in the sitcom Joe's Life (1993).
Kennedy made her dramatic turn with a supporting role in the critically acclaimed Homefront. The series ran from 1991 to 1993. She later was a regular on Savannah (1996–97), playing the rich socialite mother of Shannon Sturges' character. After the series was canceled, she was cast in Pacific Palisades. This series also was canceled after a single season. In 1997, Kennedy returned to comedy roles playing Dharma's mother, Abby O'Neil, on the sitcom Dharma & Greg (1997-2002).
During the 2000s, Kennedy had many guest-starring roles on television, appearing on Grey's Anatomy, House, ER, Scandal, In Plain Sight, Drop Dead Diva, and Veep. She also had a number of supporting film roles, appearing in Man in the Chair, In the Loop, Due Date, Midnight in Paris and The Five-Year Engagement. In 2013, Kennedy joined the cast of the sitcom Mom playing Marjorie, the twelve-step sponsor of the lead characters. She received a Critics' Choice Television Award nomination for her performance on the show. She became a series regular on the second season.
Kennedy is involved in several progressive activist causes, including Progressive Democrats of America for which she serves as chairperson of the board. She is a regular contributor to the LA Progressive. Her mid-life memoir Taken to the Stage: The Education of an Actress was published by Smith & Kraus in 1996,
|1981||Thin Ice||Arlene||Television film|
|1986||Mr. Boogedy||Eloise Davis||Television film|
|1987||Bride of Boogedy||Eloise Davis||Television film|
|1987||Baby Girl Scott||Jane|
|1989||Immediate Family||Eli's Mom|
|1990||Pump Up the Volume||Marla Hunter|
|1990||A Promise to Keep||Annie||Television film|
|1991||Sins of the Mother||Karen Turner||Television film|
|1992||Death Becomes Her||Second Woman|
|1997||Taken||Judy Gold||Short film|
|1997||Buddy||Mrs. Bunny Bowman|
|1998||Reasons of the Heart||Celia Barton|
|2000||Erin Brockovich||Laura Ambrosino|
|2007||Man in the Chair||Judy Kincaid||Method Fest Independent Film Festival Award for Best Ensemble Cast|
|2008||A Single Woman||Storyteller|
|2009||In the Loop||Karen Clark|
|2009||The Three Gifts||Rita Green||Television film|
|2010||Due Date||Sarah's Mom|
|2011||Life of Lemon||Louise Phillips|
|2011||Midnight in Paris||Helen||Nominated — Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Ensemble Acting|
|2012||The Five-Year Engagement||Carol Solomon|
|2013||In Sickness and in Health||Carol|
|2020||Eat Wheaties!||Edna Straw|
|1978||Getting Married||Jenny||TV movie|
|1979||Family||Karen||Episode: "Going Straight"|
|1979||Stockard Channing in Just Friends||Victoria||13 episodes|
|1981||The Two of Us||Nan Gallagher||20 episodes|
|1984||American Playhouse||Sophisticated urbanite||Episode: "Popular Neurotics"|
|1984||St. Elsewhere||Lois Wegener||2 episodes|
|1984–1985||Spencer||Doris Winger||13 episodes|
|1985||Robert Kennedy and His Times||Pat Kennedy||TV mini-series, 3 episodes|
|1985||Night Court||Patty Douglas||Episode: "Married Alive"|
|1986||The Twilight Zone||Christie Copperfield||Segment "Aqua Vita"|
Episode: "What Are Friends For?/Aqua Vita"
|1986||ABC Weekend Specials||Mrs. Gridley||Episode: "The Mouse and the Motorcycle"|
|1986||Tall Tales & Legends||Ben's Mom||Episode: "Davy Crockett"|
|1986–1987||Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color||Eloise Davis||Mr. Boogedy|
Bride of Boogedy
|1988||Family Man||Andrea Tobin||7 episodes|
|1989||Tales from the Crypt||Distraught Woman||Episode: "The Man Who Was Death"|
|1989||Homeroom||Miss Wagner||2 episodes|
|1990||Major Dad||Cassandra Loomis||Episode: "Standing Tall"|
|1991||Knots Landing||Doris||Episode: "Where There's a Will, There's a Way"|
|1991||Dinosaurs||Glenda Molehill (voice)||Episode: "Switched at Birth"|
|1991–1993||Homefront||Ruth Sloan||42 episodes|
|1993||Second Chances||Real Estate Agent|
|1993||Joe's Life||Barbara Gennaro||11 episodes|
|1994||The George Carlin Show||Judith Pellegrino||2 episodes|
|1995||Bless This House||Mrs. Elkins||Episode: "Pilot"|
|1995||ABC Afterschool Specials||Elaine Marshall||Episode: "Fast Forward"|
|1995||Baywatch Nights||Paparazzi Agent||Episode: "Pursuit"|
|1995||Partners||Shana||Episode: "City Hall"|
|1996||Dream On||Hilaury||Episode: "Second Time Aground"|
|1996||Homicide: Life on the Street||Dr. Kate Wystan||Episode: "I've Got a Secret"|
|1996||Once You Meet a Stranger||Connie||TV movie|
|1996–1997||Savannah||Eleanor Alexander||22 episodes|
|1997||Cybill||Gretchen||Episode: "The Wedding"|
|1997||Pacific Palisades||Amy Nichols||3 episodes|
|1997–2002||Dharma & Greg||Abby O'Neil||119 episodes|
|2003||Wild Card||Mimi||Episode: "Mimi's Assets"|
|2004||Come to Papa||Barb||Episode: "The Crush"|
|2005||Strong Medicine||Chancellor Eleanor Brubeck||Episode: "Differentials"|
|2005||Cold Case||Elena Bistrong - 1978, 2005||Episode: "Bad Night"|
|2005||Grey's Anatomy||Verna Bradley||Episode: "Bring the Pain"|
|2006||House||Greta Sims||Episode: "Failure to Communicate"|
|2006||The Young and the Restless||Feather||3 episodes|
|2007||Medium||Helen Fitzpatrick||Episode: "Whatever Possessed You"|
|2007||ER||Sergeant O'Malley||Episode: "Officer Down"|
|2007||Cane||Mary||Episode: "One Man Is an Island"|
|2008||Ghost Whisperer||Tracy Edmondson||Episode: "Home But Not Alone"|
|2009||Rita Rocks||Aunt Mavis||Episode: "I Can't Make You Love Me"|
|2009||Private Practice||Eleanor Bergin||Episode: "The Parent Trap"|
|2010||No Ordinary Family||Susan Volson||Episode: "No Ordinary Mobster"|
|2011||Retired at 35||Carol Fabricant||Episode: "Stuck in the Meddle"|
|2011||Criminal Minds||Miss Rogers||Episode: "Coda"|
|2011||Love Bites||Gail Rouscher||Episode: "Sky High"|
|2012||Scandal||Sharon Marquette||Episode: "Dirty Little Secrets"|
|2012||Best Friends Forever||Marilyn||Episode: "Put a Pin in It"|
|2012||In Plain Sight||Joanna Stuber||3 episodes|
|2012||Drop Dead Diva||Judge Isabella Alexander||Episode: "Pick's & Pakes"|
|2012||Up All Night||Sally||Episode: "The Wedding"|
|2013||Anger Management||Elaine||Episode: "Charlie's Dad Starts to Lose It"|
|2013–2014||Veep||Mary King||2 episodes|
|2013||Mistresses||Dr. Susannah Ayers||Episode: "I Choose You"|
|2013–present||Mom||Marjorie Armstrong-Perugian||Recurring season 1; regular season 2-present|
|2014||Switched at Birth||Andrea Askowitz||Episode: "You Will Not Escape"|
|2015||The Brink||Susan Buckley||4 episodes|
Awards and nominations
|1993||American Television Awards||Best Supporting Actress in a Dramatic Series||Homefront||Nominated|
|1993||Viewers for Quality Television Awards||Best Supporting Actress in a Quality Drama Series||Homefront||Nominated|
|2007||Method Fest||Best Ensemble Cast||Man in the Chair||Won|
|2011||Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards||Best Ensemble Cast||Midnight in Paris||Nominated|
|2014||Critics' Choice Television Award||Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series||Mom||Nominated|
- "Mimi Kennedy". TVGuide.com. Retrieved April 11, 2015.
- Marriage announcement of Mimi Kennedy's parents, fultonhistory.com; accessed February 20, 2014.
- Mimi Kennedy profile, filmreference.com; accessed February 17, 2014.
- "Mimi Kennedy". Yahoo Movies Canada. Archived from the original on April 11, 2015. Retrieved April 11, 2015.
- "Critics' Choice TV Awards 2014: And the nominees are..." Entertainment Weekly's EW.com. Retrieved April 11, 2015.
- "CBS' 'Mom' Promotes Mimi Kennedy to Series Regular (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 11, 2015.
- "LA County VSAP System Primary 2020: Voter Self-Protection and Information". LA Progressive. February 2, 2020. Retrieved August 14, 2020.