Vanessa A. Williams

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This article is about about the performer. For other women with similar names, see Vanessa Williams.
Vanessa A. Williams
Nicole Ari-Parker and Vanessa A. Williams.jpg
Williams (left) with Nicole Ari Parker, 2011.
Born (1963-05-12) May 12, 1963 (age 52)
Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Nationality American
Ethnicity African American
Education Marymount Manhattan College
Occupation Actress
Years active 1988–present
Known for Maxine Joseph-Chadway – Soul Food (series)
Keisha –New Jack City
Anne-Marie McCoy – Candyman
Spouse(s) Andre Wiseman (m. 1993)
Children 2

Vanessa A. Williams (born May 12, 1963) is an American actress[1] who has appeared in numerous television series. She is best known for her roles as Maxine Joseph–Chadway in the HBO series Soul Food (2000–04), Anne-Marie McCoy in the 1992 horror film Candyman and Rhonda Blair in the first season of the FOX television soap opera, Melrose Place. In 1995, she was also a series regular in the television series Murder One.

Life and career[edit]

Williams was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. In an ABC News interview, she stated that her background is from a family of slaves from Georgia and Virginia.[2] After high school she went on to get a bachelor's degree in theater and business management from Marymount Manhattan College. In 1993, Williams met Andre Wiseman and they began dating, then married in Stuyvesant, New York. They have two sons together.


Year Title Role Notes
1989 Dream Street Episode: "Pilot"
1990 Law & Order Vera Episode: "Happily Ever After"
1991 New Jack City Keisha
1989, 1991 The Cosby Show Cheryl / Jade 4 episodes
1991 Fatal Bond Waitress
1992 Candyman Anne-Marie McCoy Nominated — Fangoria Chainsaw Award for Best Supporting Actress
1992-1993 Melrose Place Rhonda Blair Series regular, 32 episodes
1994 Drop Squad Mali
1995 NYPD Blue Kira Episode: "Don We Now Our Gay Apparel"
1995 Living Single Hellura Episode: "Another Saturday Night"
1996 Buddies Janice Rollins Episode: "Marry Me... Sort Of"
1995-1996 Murder One Lila Series regular, 23 episodes
Nominated — NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (1996)
1996 Mother Donna
1996 Malcolm & Eddie Stephanie Episode: "Big Brother Is Watching"
1996 Chicago Hope Dr. Grace Carr 6 episodes
Nominated — NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series (1997)
1997 Between Brothers Rebecca Episode: "The Interview"
1997 A Woman of Color Television film
1998 The Pretender Denise Clements Episode: "Collateral Damage"
1998 The Steve Harvey Show Nina Episode: "Rent"
1999 Total Recall 2070 Dr. Violet Whims Episode: "Self-Inflicted"
1999 Incognito Wilhelmina Hunter Television film
2000 Punks Jennifer
2000 Playing with Fire Riana Roberts Television film
2002 Our America Sandra Williams Television film
Nominated — Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special
Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actress: Television Movie/Cable
2002 Like Mike Pharmacist
2002 Baby of the Family Gloria
2003 Black Listed J.W. Direct-to-video
2000-2004 Soul Food (TV series) Maxine Chadway Series regular, 74 episodes
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series (2003)
Nominated — NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series (2001, 2004-05)
2007 Cold Case Crystal Stacy Episode: "Shuffle, Ball Change"
2007 Ice Spiders Dr. April Sommers Television film
2008 Flirting with Forty Kristine Television film
Nominated — NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special
2009 Contradictions of the Heart Lea Direct-to-video
2009 Knight Rider Ambassador Olara Kumali Episodes: "Don't Stop the Knight" and "Day Turns Into Knight"
2009 Everybody Hates Chris Tallulah Lafitte Episode: "Everybody Hates Bomb Threats"
2009 Imagine That Lori Strother
2008-2009 Lincoln Heights Naomi Bradshaw Episodes: "Ode to Joy" and "Bully for You"
2011 A Mother's Love Rochelle Richardson
2012 Sugar Mommas Lynn Television film
2012 Raising Izzie Tonya Freeman Television film
Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Actress: T.V. Movie/Cable
2014 Men, Money & Gold Diggers Sandra WInslow Direct-to-video
2014 Crossed the Line Juice Direct-to-video
2015 The Flash Mrs. West Guest star


  1. ^ McCann, Bob (2010). Encyclopedia of African American Actresses in Film and Television. McFarland. pp. 362–. ISBN 978-0-7864-3790-0. Retrieved 6 July 2011. 
  2. ^ "Vanessa A. Williams and African Ancestry on ABC News". Youtube/ABC News. Retrieved 2013-12-12. 

External links[edit]