Like a lot of showbiz hopefuls, Kirsten Vangsness has had her share of day jobs. After paying the bills as a substitute teacher, child counselor, and dinner-theater actress, Vangsness found her big break when she was cast in a Pepsi commercial. Soon afterward, she scored the role of Penelope Garcia on the hit show Criminal Minds in 2004. She made her feature film debut in the thriller In My Sleep.
Biography by Cammila Collar
- First acting experience was in junior high school where she found she was able to overcome her painful shyness.
- Was a substitute teacher, restaurant hostess, grant writer and dinner-theater performer while looking for work as an actor.
- First paying acting job was in a soft-drink commercial.
- Is a published writer with some of her work having appeared in Los Angeles Magazine.