Kelli Giddish

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Kelli Giddish
2009 07 24 Kelli Giddish.jpg
Kelli Giddish at Comic Con 2009
Born Kelli Marie Giddish
(1980-04-13) April 13, 1980 (age 39)
Cumming, Georgia, U.S.
Education Forsyth Central High School
Alma mater University of Evansville
Occupation Actress
Years active 2005–present
Spouse(s) Lawrence Faulborn (m. 2015)
Children Ludo Faulborn
Parent(s) Charles Giddish
Nita Giddish

Kelli Marie Giddish (born April 13, 1980) is an American television, stage, and film actress. She is best known for her role as NYPD Detective Amanda Rollins in the NBC television legal crime drama series, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (2011–present). Previously, she portrayed Di Henry on the ABC soap opera, All My Children (2005–07), as well as starring in short-lived Fox crime drama series, Past Life (2010); and the NBC crime drama series, Chase (2010–11).

Early life

Giddish was born in Cumming, Georgia. She is the daughter of Charles Giddish and wife Nita, and has a brother named Eli Giddish.[1] Her paternal grandfather Ralph L. Giddish (Georgia, ca. 1923) enlisted in the United States Army on March 18, 1943[1][2] and was a World War II veteran[3] and nudged her interest in acting along by taking her to the Fox Theatre in Atlanta[4] and her maternal grandmother Dosia Hildebrand[1] was very supportive of her interests.[4] Giddish graduated from Forsyth Central High School in 1998, winning Region Best Actress in the 1997 One Act competition, and was also 1998 State Literary Champion for Girls Dramatic Interpretation. Giddish graduated with honors from the University of Evansville in Indiana where she majored in Theatre Performance. After graduating, she decided to move to Manhattan to pursue her acting career.


Early career

Giddish joined the cast of All My Children in March 2005, creating the role of Di Henry. In July 2007, it was confirmed by Soap Opera Weekly magazine that Giddish and All My Children parted ways in a mutual decision and that she would make her final appearance as Di on September 19, 2007.

Giddish appeared in the film Death in Love, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, and created the role of Courtney in the web series The Burg. The same people responsible for The Burg also created All's Faire in which Giddish played the role of Cindy.

Giddish, Nicholas Bishop, and Ravi Patel were cast in Fox's reincarnation drama pilot, Past Life. The WBTV-produced reincarnation project revolved around past-life investigators. Giddish played a Ph.D. in psychology and cognitive research who believes in reincarnation.[5] It was announced on May 18, 2009 that Fox had officially placed Past Life on their midseason 2010 schedule to air at 9:00 PM EST on Tuesdays.[6] It premiered on February 9, 2010, and was canceled on February 18.

Giddish starred as the central character, U.S. Marshal Annie Frost, in the police procedural drama Chase, which premiered on NBC in fall 2010.[7] Giddish received rave reviews for her ability to play the lead character in the series, but it was pulled in early February 2011. On April 6, 2011, NBC decided to air five new episodes of Chase on Saturday nights with the first beginning on April 23, 2011.[8]

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

In January 2007, Kelli guest starred on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit in the 8th season, episode 12, "Outsider", as Kara Bawson.

It was announced on June 27, 2011 that Giddish would join the cast of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for its thirteenth season along with Cold Case's Danny Pino coinciding with the departing Christopher Meloni.[9] Giddish told TV Guide during Summer filming; "Everybody on the set is really excited and energized. They've lost a family member with Chris Meloni leaving, but they've been very accepting of us. Amanda is thrilled to be here working with these people, and so am I."[10]

In an interview with TV Guide prior to the 13th season premiere/Giddish's debut episode as Detective Amanda Rollins, "Scorched Earth", Giddish says about her character, "My character is in complete awe of Olivia, Amanda's really eager to get in there because she knows her stuff and really eager to learn. She has come from Atlanta and there was a ceiling there, so she's come up to New York." Giddish felt great about joining the series in its 13th season, "I couldn't feel better about it. ... There's no intimidation, what attracted me was the prospect of re-invigorating a franchise that's been so well-known and so well-liked, and then to be the shaker and mover." Giddish is confident that viewers will warm up to Rollins and Amaro (Pino) with time. "They're going to love us because it's not being forced in their faces," she says. "The more you know about us and the more you see us in your living room, the more you're hopefully going to love us."[11]

At the end of season 13 of Law & Order: SVU, she and co-star Danny Pino weighed-in on their first season and both Giddish and Pino say they received not only a "very warm welcome" from SVU's cast and crew, but saw their respective characters explored more than they could hope for in their first season. "They’ve given me a lot to work with — and I hope they give me more next season," says Giddish. "Were still playing 'musical chairs' in terms of partners, and that’s a great way to go about exploring the different characters." Pino added, "That’s what you hope for when you’re putting it down on paper and discussing what you want to play. I had [pre-season] conversations with [showrunner] Warren Leight, and you hope that starts materializing — and it did. And that bodes well going into Season 14."[12]

Giddish's partner on the show primarily is Ice-T, who has portrayed Detective Odafin "Fin" Tutuola since the 2nd season. Ice-T praised both Giddish and Pino in the wake of Chris Meloni's departure, "We had to regroup, like a football team," said Ice-T. "The quarterback changed, but we still had to move the ball down the field. And we did well." He continued with, "Danny came in, strong. Kelli came in, strong. And we shut down the doubters."[12]

It was announced that Kelli's real life pregnancy would be incorporated into SVU's seventeenth season.

Personal life

Kelli married Lawrence Faulborn on June 20, 2015, in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.[13] She gave birth to the couple's first child, a son named Ludo, on October 6, 2015.[14]



Year Title Role Notes
2005 Witches of the Caribbean Clara
2006 Walls Sara Short film
2008 Death in Love Young Mother
2008 Understudy, TheThe Understudy Simone
2012 Breathless Tiny


Year Title Role Notes
2005–07 All My Children Diana "Di" Henry Series regular
2006–09 Burg, TheThe Burg Courtney Web-series, 13 episodes
2007 Damages Heather MacDonald Episodes: "Sort of Like a Family", "Because I Know Patty"
2007 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Dana Stipe Episode: "Depths"
2007 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Kara Bawson Episode: "Outsider"
2008 All's Faire Cindy Web-series
2008 Without a Trace Ariana Murphy Episode: "Rise and Fall"
2009 Life on Mars Carol Episode: "Coffee, Tea or Annie"
2010 Past Life Dr. Kate McGinn Series regular, 9 episodes
2010–11 Chase Annie Frost Series regular, 18 episodes
2011 Good Wife, TheThe Good Wife Sophia Russo Episodes: "Getting Off", "Closing Arguments", "A New Day"
2011–present Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Det. Amanda Rollins Series regular
2014 Chicago Fire Det. Amanda Rollins Episode: "Nobody Touches Anything"
2014-15 Chicago P.D. Det. Amanda Rollins Episodes: "Conventions", "They'll Have to Go Through Me", "The Number of Rats"


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  9. Seidman, Robert. "NBC Signs Kelli Giddish (Chase) and Danny Pino (Cold Case) as New Detectives for Law & Order: Special Victims Unit". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved June 27, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. Rudolph, Ileane (August 25, 2011). "Fall TV First Look: Kelli Giddish and Danny Pino on Law & Order: SVU". TV Guide. Retrieved August 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. Stanhope, Kate (September 20, 2011). "Kelli Giddish on Law & Order: SVU's New Recruits: The Fans Are Going to Love Us". TV Guide. Retrieved May 28, 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. 12.0 12.1 Mitovich, Matt (May 23, 2012). "SVU Stars Weigh In on Season of Transition, Tease Cliffhanger Finale: 'It Doesn't End Well!'". TV Line. Retrieved May 28, 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. Martin, Annie (July 30, 2015). "Kelli Giddish of 'Law & Order: SVU' married and pregnant". UPI. Retrieved July 30, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. Mendelson, Will (October 6, 2015). "Law & Order: SVU Star Kelli Giddish Welcomes Her First Child: Photo". Us Weekly. United States. Wenner Media LLC. Retrieved October 6, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links