December 9, 1969
Bronx, New York, United States
An attractive red-haired performer who literally grew up on TV, Allison Smith may perhaps be remembered as Jennie Lowell, Jane Curtain's daughter, on the long-running CBS sitcom "Kate & Allie" (1984-89). The perky Smith had previously established herself as a child performer to reckon with by playing the title role in the Broadway musical "Annie," racking up more than 1,000 performances over a two-year run. She had debuted in the ensemble of another musical "Evita" and ironically made her primetime TV debut as the young Eva in the 1981 NBC biographical miniseries "Evita Peron." After honing her comic timing as part of the ensemble on "Kate & Allie," Smith went on to amass an impressively diverse string of credits that includes guest appearances on sitcoms and dramatic shows, theater (the West Coast premiere of David Mamet's "Oleanna") and the occasional feature film (e.g., "Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday" 1993). Smith excelled as a college student who is raped at a party in the earnest film "A Reason to Believe" (1995). She then starred in the short-lived "Spy Game" (CBS, 1997) and offered capable support as the aspiring actress who doubles as secretary to Dennis Farina's 60s-era private investigator "Buddy Faro" (CBS, 1998). In 1999, Smith began a recurring role as Rob Lowe's love interest on the popular NBC series "The West Wing."