Portal:Houston/Selected biography/February 2008

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Jennifer Anne Garner (born April 17, 1972) is an Emmy-nominated and Golden Globe- and SAG Award-winning American actress. She is best known for her role as CIA agent Sydney Bristow on TV's Alias. In December 2007, Garner was named The Charleston Sunday Gazette-Mail's 2007 West Virginian of the Year "for her dedication, work ethic and unique role as role model and ambassador for West Virginia".

Garner was born in Houston, Texas, the daughter of Patricia Ann (née English), an English teacher from Oklahoma, and Billy Jack Garner, a chemical engineer who worked for Union Carbide from Texas. She is the middle child between two sisters, Melissa Garner Wylie (born 1969, resides in Boston, Massachusetts) and Susannah Kay Garner Carpenter (born January 24, 1975 in Texas, resides in Charleston, West Virginia). Her family is Methodist. At three years old, Garner began taking ballet lessons which she continued throughout her youth. Although she admitted that she loved dancing, she never had ambitions to become a classical ballerina. When she was four years old, her father's job with Union Carbide relocated her family to Princeton, West Virginia, then to Charleston, West Virginia, where Garner resided until her college years.