Palos Heights, Illinois, USA
Jennifer Ann Lien (born August 24, 1974, height 5' 3" (1,60 m)) is an American actress, best known for playing the alien Kes on the television series Star Trek: Voyager.
The youngest of three children, Lien was born in Palos Heights, Illinois. Her mother, Delores Lien, was a college teacher.
Her first television appearance was in a bubblegum advertisement playing twins. Her first appearance on a series was playing a music academy student in 1990 in an episode of Brewster Place starring Oprah Winfrey. She provided her voice for the dubbed English version of Baby Blood, a French horror film. Lien landed the series regular role of Hannah Moore on the series Another World in 1991.
In 1993, she was cast as Roanne in Phenom, a sitcom starring Judith Light. That year she also participated in the recording of Adam Sandler's comedy album They're All Gonna Laugh At You in which she played the part of the Valedictorian on the track "The Buffoon And The Valedictorian", as well as one of the daughters on the track "Oh, mom...".
In 1994, she was cast as Kes on Star Trek: Voyager. Her character is Ocampan, a species that lives for just 8 or 9 years, who joins the crew of the starship after it is stranded 75,000 light-years from earth.
She left the series in 1997, at the same time that Jeri Ryan joined the cast, as Seven of Nine, but guest starred in a few episodes in later seasons.
Lien subsequently appeared in the movie American History X as older sister Davina Vinyard alongside Edward Norton's character Derek Vinyard. In 1998, Lien appeared in SLC Punk! playing Sandy, the wild girlfriend of Matthew Lillard's character Stevo. She also provided her voice for the character of adult Vitani in The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, and voiced Agent "L" for the first three seasons of Men in Black: The Series.In 2000, Lien returned for an episode of Star Trek: Voyager entitled "Fury" where she had input to the script. Though Lien welcomed the chance to work with the cast of the show again, she later stated that she was disappointed with her performance in the episode.
She is married to writer and filmmaker Phil Hwang; their first child, Jonah, was born on September 5, 2002. Since the birth of her son, Lien has retired from acting and voiceover work; however, she was credited as executive producer on her husband's comedy 2008 film Geek Mythology.