Nick Offerman

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Nick Offerman
Offerman in May 2018
Nicholas David Offerman

(1970-06-26) June 26, 1970 (age 53)
Alma materUniversity of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (BFA)
  • Actor
  • comedian
  • writer
  • producer
Years active1994–present
(m. 2003)

Nicholas David Offerman (born June 26, 1970) is an American actor, comedian, writer, and producer. He became widely known for his role as Ron Swanson in the NBC sitcom Parks and Recreation (2009–2015), for which he received the Television Critics Association Award for Individual Achievement in Comedy and was twice nominated for the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

Offerman has also appeared in the second season of the FX series Fargo (2015), for which he received a nomination for the Critics' Choice Television Award, as well as the FX on Hulu series Pam & Tommy (2022), and the HBO series The Last of Us (2023), for which he won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series. He has acted in numerous independent films such as The Kings of Summer (2013), Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015), The Founder (2016), and Hearts Beat Loud (2018).

Offerman's other work includes executive producing and starring in the film The House of Tomorrow (2017). He voiced Agent Powers on Gravity Falls (2012–2016) and has provided voice acting work for The Lego Movie franchise (2014–present), Hotel Transylvania 2 (2015), Ice Age: Collision Course (2016), and the Sing film franchise (2016–present). He also hosted Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics (2020).

He began co-hosting the NBC reality competition series Making It (2018–2021) with Parks and Recreation co-star Amy Poehler; the duo received three nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program.

Early life[edit]

Nicholas David Offerman was born in Joliet, Illinois, on June 26, 1970, the son of nurse Cathy (née Roberts) and social studies teacher Ric Offerman.[1] His father taught at a high school in Minooka.[2] Offerman was raised Catholic[3][4] in nearby Minooka,[5] where he attended Minooka Community High School.[6] He received a BFA from the University of Illinois Urbana–Champaign in 1993.[5] That year, he and a group of fellow students co-founded the Chicago theatre company Defiant Theatre.[5]



Offerman lived in Chicago in the mid-1990s, where he participated with theater companies such as Steppenwolf, Goodman, and Wisdom Bridge. At Steppenwolf, he also worked as a fight choreographer and master carpenter.[7] During this time, Offerman became acquainted with Amy Poehler, who was heavily involved with the Chicago improv comedy scene.[5]

In 2003, he married Will & Grace actress Megan Mullally. Offerman has also appeared on her talk show, The Megan Mullally Show. At the same time, he began appearing on television as a plumber on Will & Grace on its fourth season's Thanksgiving episode, on The King of Queens, in three episodes of 24, and in an episode of The West Wing. Prior to Parks and Recreation, his most prominent role was as a factory worker and Benny Lopez's love interest Randy McGee on George Lopez. He appeared twice on Gilmore Girls, in 2003's "The Festival of Living Art" and 2005's "Always a Godmother, Never a God" and in the third-season episode of Monk, "Mr. Monk and the Election" as a helper for the campaign of Natalie Teeger. In 2007, Offerman co-starred in the Comedy Central series American Body Shop.

Offerman with the cast of Parks and Recreation in 2012

In 2009, The Office producers Michael Schur and Greg Daniels offered Offerman a regular supporting role in their NBC sitcom Parks and Recreation: that of Ron Swanson, the deadpan, government-hating, libertarian head of a city parks department and boss of Amy Poehler's character Leslie Knope.[5] Slate magazine declared Offerman "Parks and Recreation's secret weapon", and said he regularly stole scenes and "has a gift for understated physical comedy."[8] The role weaves antagonism and political philosophy with humanity, while the intense libertarian philosophy the character lives out is often played off against the equally intense social liberalism and "do-gooder" mentality of Poehler's character. Offerman said that supporting parts such as that of Parks and Recreation are his ideal roles, and that he draws particular inspiration from Reverend Jim Ignatowski, the character played by Christopher Lloyd in the sitcom Taxi.[5]

Offerman has also been featured in the Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital with Rob Corddry and Rob Huebel. He is the voice of Axe Cop in the animated series of the same name that premiered on July 27, 2013.[9] In the same year, Offerman portrayed Johnny Cool in the "Boston" episode of Derek Waters' Drunk History on Comedy Central. In 2014, he portrayed a lovesick German talk show host in The Decemberists' video, Make You Better . The same year, he also appeared in a short film The Gunfighter directed by Eric Kissack. Nick played the role of the narrator of the film where the actors of the film break the fourth wall and are able to hear the narrator.[10]

Offerman can be seen on the big screen briefly as a construction worker in City of Angels (1998) and later in other films such as November (2004), Cursed (2005), Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous (2005), Sin City (2005), The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009) and The Kings of Summer (2013). He also appeared in the 2006 film Wristcutters: A Love Story as a cop who attempts to arrest Shannyn Sossamon's character, Mikal. 2012 saw him in two film roles, as 21 Jump Street's Deputy Chief Hardy and in Casa de Mi Padre as DEA Agent Parker. He reprised his role as Deputy Chief Hardy in 22 Jump Street two years later. Additionally, he starred in and produced an independent film, Somebody Up There Likes Me (2012), shot in Austin, Texas. He appeared in the 2013 comedy We're the Millers, which starred Jason Sudeikis and Jennifer Aniston, and voiced MetalBeard in The Lego Movie. Offerman conceived of and starred in punk band FIDLAR's 2013 video for their song "Cocaine".[11] Offerman also played an alcoholic college guidance counselor in Believe Me. Offerman played the recurring role Karl Weathers in the second season of Fargo (2015). Offerman voiced Grandpa Mike alongside wife Megan Mullally who voiced Grandma Linda in Hotel Transylvania 2 (2015). He portrayed the first establisher of McDonald's, Dick McDonald, in The Founder (2016). Offerman also starred in alternative rock band They Might Be Giants' 2018 video for their song "The Greatest".[12]

In 2023, Offerman appeared in the third episode of the HBO series The Last of Us as Bill. His performance, along with that of his co-star Murray Bartlett, was critically acclaimed, with some critics naming it a career-best performance, and Dais Johnston of Inverse labelled them as "Emmy-worthy".[13][14][15] He went on to win Guest Actor in a Drama Series at the 2023 Creative Arts Emmy Awards.[16] Also in 2023, Offerman has also teamed up with Jacob Tremblay, Dennis Quaid for a Crime Thriller "Sovereign".[17][18]


In addition to acting, Offerman is also a professional boat builder and has a side business as a wood craftsman. Offerman makes furniture and other wooden structures such as canoes and boats at his woodshop.[19] He also released an instructional DVD in 2008 titled Fine Woodstrip Canoe Building with Nick Offerman, shot by Jimmy DiResta. DiResta's pay for shooting the DVD was a canoe, the second Offerman has built.[20] He has been featured in, and contributed articles to, the magazine Fine Woodworking.[21]


Offerman has released four semi-autobiographical publications: the first, Paddle Your Own Canoe: One Man's Fundamentals for Delicious Living was released in 2013; his second, Gumption: Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America's Gutsiest Troublemakers, was released May 26, 2015; the third, Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop, was released October 18, 2016. His fourth book, Where the Deer and the Antelope Play: The Pastoral Observations of One Ignorant American Who Loves to Walk Outside, was released October 12, 2021. He has also narrated all four as audiobooks.

Comedy tours[edit]

In 2017, Offerman launched his Full Bush Tour which consisted of 28 shows across the U.S. and Canada.[22] His All Rise Tour kicked off on July 20, 2019, in Thackerville and continued through the rest of 2019, hitting major cities: Chicago, San Francisco, Washington DC, Philadelphia, New York, Detroit, and Atlanta.


In 2014, Offerman and Mullally starred alongside each other in the off-Broadway one-act play, Annapurna. The two play an estranged couple that reunites one last time.[23] In 2015, Offerman starred as Ignatius J. Reilly in a theatrical adaptation of A Confederacy of Dunces with the Huntington Theatre Company.[24]

Personal life[edit]

Offerman married actress Megan Mullally on September 20, 2003.[25] They met while co-starring in the play The Berlin Circle with the Evidence Room Theatre Company in the summer of 2000.[26] They have worked together on series and films such as Will & Grace, Parks and Recreation, The Kings of Summer, Smashed, Hotel Transylvania 2, Bob's Burgers, and The Great North. They began a live comedy tour in 2016, the theme of which was their sex life.[27] In 2019, they started In Bed with Nick and Megan, a podcast discussing their personal lives while interviewing guests.[28][29]

When asked whether he is a libertarian like his character Ron Swanson, Offerman said in 2017, "While I admire the philosophy of the libertarian mindset, I think it's proven to be ineffectual in actual governance. So no, I'm not. I'm a free-thinking American."[30] He described Donald Trump as racist and sexist during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, but also mocked Trump's opponent Hillary Clinton for her private email controversy.[31] Upon voting in the 2020 Democratic Party presidential primaries, he tweeted a photo of himself with an "I Voted" sticker, adding the caption "#VoteWarren" in reference to Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren.[32] That year, he also tweeted his support for Democratic candidate Charles Booker in the U.S. Senate Democratic primary in Kentucky.[33]



Year Title Role Notes
1997 Going All the Way Wilks
1998 City of Angels Construction Worker
1999 Treasure Island Samuel
2000 Groove Sergeant Channahon
2002 Murder by Numbers Officer at Richard's House
2004 November Officer Roberts
2005 Cursed Officer
Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous Karl Steele
Sin City Shlubb
2006 Wristcutters: A Love Story Cop
2007 The Go-Getter Nick the Potter
2008 Harmony & Me Meter Maid Man
2009 The Men Who Stare at Goats Scotty Mercer
Taking Chances Sheriff Hoke Hollander
2010 Audrey the Trainwreck David George
All Good Things Jim McCarthy
2012 Somebody Up There Likes Me Sal Also producer
Smashed Dave Davies
21 Jump Street Deputy Chief Hardy
Casa de Mi Padre DEA Agent Parker
2013 The Kings of Summer Frank Toy
In a World... Heners
We're the Millers Don Fitzgerald
Paradise Mr. Mannerhelm
2014 Nick Offerman: American Ham Himself Stand-up film
Also writer and executive producer
The Lego Movie MetalBeard Voice role
Ernest & Celestine George Voice role; English dub
Date and Switch Terry
The Gunfighter Narrator Voice role; short film
22 Jump Street Deputy Chief Hardy
Believe Me Sean
2015 A Walk in the Woods REI Dave
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl Victor Gaines
Knight of Cups Scott
Danny Collins Guy DeLoach
Welcome to Happiness Moses
Hotel Transylvania 2 Mike Loughran Voice role
2016 Ice Age: Collision Course Gavin
Sing Norman
The Founder Richard McDonald
2017 Gunter Babysits Norman Voice role; short film
The House of Tomorrow Alan Whitcomb Also executive producer
The Little Hours Lord Bruno
The Hero Jeremy
My Life as a Courgette Raymond Voice role; English dub
Infinity Baby Neo
2018 Nostalgia Henry Greer
Hearts Beat Loud Francis James "Frank" Fisher
Bad Times at the El Royale Felix O'Kelly
White Fang Marshal Weeden Scott Voice role
2019 The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part MetalBeard
Frances Ferguson Narrator
Lucy in the Sky Will Plimpton
2020 Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics Himself
Sacred Cow Narrator Voice role
2021 Trollhunters: Rise of the Titans Varvatos Vex
Sing 2 Norman
2023 Origin Dave
Dicks: The Musical Steve Chaney
Dumb Money Kenneth C. Griffin
Candy Cane Lane Pip
2024 Civil War Post-production
2025 Untitled eighth Mission: Impossible film Sydney


Year Title Role Notes
1997 ER Rog Episode: "Ambush"
1998 Arliss Packers Fan Episode: "Fans First"
Profiler Bobby Episode: "Double Vision"
KaBlam! Colonel Kudzu 2 episodes
1999 The West Wing Jerry Episode: "The Crackpots and These Women"
2001 Will & Grace Nick the Plumber Episode: "Moveable Feast"
2002 The Practice Charles Rossi Episode: "Manifest Necessity"
2003 Good Morning Miami Officer Nick Episode: "About a Ploy"
24 Marcus 3 episodes
The King of Queens The Man Episode: "Thanks, Man"
2001 & 2003 NYPD Blue Steven Debrees / Billy 2 episodes
2003–2004 George Lopez Randy 8 episodes
2004 Deadwood Tom Mason Episode: "Deep Water"
2005 Life on a Stick Greg Episode: "The Gods of TV"
Monk Jack Whitman Episode: "Mr. Monk and the Election"
2003–2005 Gilmore Girls Bo Belleville 2 episodes
2006 CSI: NY Joe Green Episodes: "Cool Hunter"
3 lbs Dr. Coffey Episodes: "Lost for Words"
2007 American Body Shop Rob 10 episodes
2008–2015 Childrens Hospital Chance Briggs 14 episodes
2009–2015 & 2020 Parks and Recreation Ron Swanson 125 episodes
2012–2019 Bob's Burgers Cooper / Pete / Clem Clements (voices) 3 episodes
2012 The Cleveland Show Harris Grundle (voice) Episode: "Tis the Cleveland to Be Sorry"
2013 Conan Ron Burgundy Episode: "Occupy Conan: When Outsourcing Goes Too Far"
Out There Doug (voice) Episode: "Viking Days"
Drunk History Johnny Cool Episode: "Boston"
2013–2015 Axe Cop Axe Cop (voice) 22 episodes; also executive producer
2014 Comedy Bang! Bang! Himself Episode: "Nick Offerman Wears a Green Flannel Shirt & Brown Boots"
Kroll Show Vanya Episode: "Krolling Around with Nick Klown"
2014–2015 Gravity Falls Agent Powers (voice) 4 episodes
2014 & 2021 The Simpsons Captain Joseph Bowditch (voice) 2 episodes
2014 Sofia the First Whiskers (voice) Episode: "Winter's Gift"
2014–2023 Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Guest actor and voice 4 episodes[34][35][36][37]
2015 Fargo Karl Weathers 5 episodes
The Muppets Himself Episode: "Bear Left Then Bear Write"
You, Me and the Apocalypse Buddy Episode: "Still Stuff Worth Fighting For"
Brooklyn Nine-Nine Frederick Episode: "Ava"
2016 Life in Pieces Spencer Episode: "Annulled Roommate Pill Shower"
Son of Zorn Dr. Klorpnis (voice) 2 episodes
2017 Comrade Detective Captain Covaci (voice) 5 episodes
Curb Your Enthusiasm Cody Goodger Episode: "Fatwa!"
2018 Will & Grace Jackson Boudreaux Episode: "Friends and Lover"
2018–2021 Making It Himself (host) 22 episodes
2018–2019 3Below: Tales of Arcadia Commander Varvatos Vex (voice) 26 episodes
2019 Good Omens Thaddeus Dowling 2 episodes
2020 The Good Place Nick Offerman Episode: "Whenever You're Ready"
Devs Forest Miniseries; 8 episodes
2021–present The Great North Beef Tobin (voice) Series regular
2021 History of Swear Words Himself 5 episodes
Duncanville Zeb (voice) Episode: "Das Banana Boot"
Colin in Black & White Rick Kaepernick 6 episodes
2022 Pam & Tommy Uncle Miltie Miniseries
37th Independent Spirit Awards Himself (co-host) Television special[38]
The Resort Murray Thompson Main role
A League of Their Own Dove Porter 3 episodes
Who Do You Think You Are? Himself Episode 3
2023 The Last of Us Bill Episode: "Long, Long Time"[39]
Party Down Dermott Episode: "First Annual PI2A Symposium"
2024 The Conners Adam Chestnut Episode: “The Publisher Cops Show Pilot”
The Umbrella Academy Dr. Gean Thibedeau Post-production


Year Title Role Venue
2014 Annapurna Ulysses Acorn Theatre, New York City
2015 A Confederacy of Dunces Ignatius Reilly Huntington Theatre Company, Boston

Video games[edit]

Year Title Voice role
1994 Club Dead[40] Lewis Scudder
2015 Lego Dimensions MetalBeard

Theme park attractions[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2016 The Lego Movie: 4D - A New Adventure MetalBeard (voice)

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Nominated work Result Ref.
2010 Television Critics Association Individual Achievement in Comedy Parks and Recreation Nominated
2011 Won
2011 Critics' Choice Television Award Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated
2012 Nominated
2012 Writers Guild of America Awards Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated
2015 Critics' Choice Television Award Best Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie Fargo Nominated
2019 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program Making It Nominated
2020 Nominated
2022 Nominated
2024 Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series The Last of Us: Long, Long Time Won


  1. ^ "Local News", The Herald-News (Joliet), November 30, 2003.
  2. ^ Ken O'Brien (October 19, 1997). "Cast party: When NBC's "ER" drew a large national audience..." Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 2, 2014.
  3. ^ Rock 'n Roll Ghost. "TV Interview: Nick Offerman – Parks and Recreation (NBC)". Archived from the original on August 17, 2017. Retrieved January 2, 2014.
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  9. ^ Fitzpatrick, Kevin (January 8, 2013). "FOX RELEASES 'AXE COP' VOICE CAST, SETS SATURDAY ANIMATION DOMINATION HD PREMIERE". ScreenCrush. Retrieved May 11, 2013.
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  12. ^ "The Greatest". Retrieved November 21, 2018.
  13. ^ Johnston, Dais (January 29, 2023). "'The Last of Us' Episode 3 Director Reveals the Secret Meaning Behind the Last Shot". Inverse. Bustle Digital Group. Archived from the original on January 30, 2023. Retrieved January 30, 2023.
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  16. ^ Chuba, Kirsten (January 7, 2024). "Creative Arts Emmys: Nick Offerman and Storm Reid Win for Guest Acting in a Drama Series". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 7, 2024.
  17. ^ Ritman, Alex (February 16, 2023). "Berlin: Nick Offerman, Jacob Tremblay, Dennis Quaid Team for Crime Thriller 'Sovereign' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 7, 2024.
  18. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (May 22, 2023). "Nick Offerman, Dennis Quaid & Jacob Tremblay Thriller 'Sovereign' Acquired By Briarcliff Entertainment – Cannes". Deadline. Retrieved January 7, 2024.
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  21. ^ "Nick Offerman". Fine Woodworking. Retrieved September 21, 2022.
  22. ^ ConcertFix. "Nick Offerman Tour Dates & Concert Tickets 2019". ConcertFix. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  23. ^ Isherwood, Charles (April 22, 2014). "Watch Out: The Ex-Wife Has Arrived, and She's Got Lots of Baggage". The New York Times. Retrieved April 30, 2020.
  24. ^ Clay, Carolyn (November 20, 2015). "A 'Confederacy' Of Laughter At The Huntington". Retrieved April 27, 2021.
  25. ^ Fox, Jesse David (March 29, 2013). "The History of Nick Offerman and Megan Mullally's Awesome Marriage". Vulture. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
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  32. ^ Seipel, Brooke (March 3, 2020). "Nick Offerman says he voted for Warren, posts photo outside 'Pawnee' city hall". The Hill. Retrieved June 20, 2020.
  33. ^ Offerman, Nick [@Nick_Offerman] (June 12, 2020). "Well, @Booker4KY seems like the right call - the KY farmers I know also prefer his policy" (Tweet). Archived from the original on November 12, 2021. Retrieved December 7, 2022 – via Twitter.
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  37. ^ Election Subversion: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO), retrieved May 6, 2023
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  40. ^ Club Dead, retrieved July 13, 2020

External links[edit]