Vanessa Williams

Birth Name:  Vanessa A. Williams
Birth Place: Bedford-Stuyvesant, New York City, New York, United States
Profession: Actor


Born Vanessa A. Williams in Brooklyn, New York. She knew that she wanted to be an actor at the age of 12. Vanessa went with her younger brother on an audition for the New York City Opera’s Children’s Chorus thinking she would get information on becoming an actor and ended up in chorus.

Williams toured the country performing with the famed Opera Chorus, and secured an agent for her acting aspirations, landing multiple commercials. While attending Marymount Manhattan College, she scored two recurring roles on the Cosby Show as Cheryl and Jade. Added credits like Dream Street, Law & Order, New Jack City and Fatal Bond before graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Theater and Business.

In 1992, Vanessa won the role of Anne-Marie McCoy in the theatrical release Candyman. It was her role as Rhonda Blair on the mega-hit on Melrose Place that same year that garnered her the most press and put her on the Hollywood radar.

Williams has been working steady ever since. The rest of the 90s found her adding credits such as Drop Squad, NYPD Blue, Living Single, Buddies, Mother, Malcolm and Eddie, Jungle Cubs, Between Brothers, A Woman of Color, The Steve Harvey Show, Incognito, The Pretender and Total Recall 2070.

Vanessa juggled recurring roles at the same time as Lila on Murder One and Dr. Grace Carr on Chicago Hope. Moving into the 2000s, she added more recurring roles like the voice of Sonia Briggs on Heavy Gear: The Animated Series, Maxine Chadway on the acclaimed Soul Food, Ambassador Olara Kumali on Knight Rider and Aunt Naomi on Lincoln Heights.

She continued to pepper her resume with guest appearances on Cold Case, Ice Spiders, Flirting with Forty, Everybody Hates Chris, Imagine That, Tim Alexander’s A Mother’s Love, Sugar Mommas, Raising Izzie, Crossed the Line, Ward of the State, The Secret She Kept, Diva Diaries, Major Crimes and the upcoming series remake Dynasty. Williams added recurring roles on The Bay, The Flash and Famous in Love.

In 2016, Vanessa stepped into the ground-breaking, fan favorite role of Dr. Valerie Grant on Days of Our Lives. She continues to explore all aspects of her artistic side; singing, performing on stage, writing, producing and directing.

Vanessa resides in Los Angeles with her husband John Marshall Jones and their sons.

Fast Facts

  • May 12, 1963 — Birthdate
  • Was a member of New York City Opera’s Children’s Chorus.
  • Earned a Daytime Emmy nomination as an Outstanding Performing in a Children’s Special for the Showtime movie Our America in 2003.
  • In 2004, she wrote, directed, and produced the short film Dense, which aired on Showtime.
  • First commercial was for Bubble Yum, with Ralph Macchio.
  • Worked on a variety show in Spain.


  • Stevie Williams — Brother
  • Roy Williams — Brother
  • Matthew Williams — Brother
  • Andre Wiseman — Ex-spouse
  • John Marshall Jones — Spouse
  • Haile Zion Ali Wiseman — Son
  • Omar Tafari Wiseman — Son
  • John Marshall Jones Jr. — Son


After numerous appearances and starring roles on film and television, Vanessa Williams settled into her role as Dr. Valerie Grant on Days of Our Lives in September 2016.

Originally landed in LA just to “check it out” and ended up sticking around after a role in the 1992 film Candyman. Williams became a media darling playing Rhonda Blair on Melrose Place.

Vanessa Williams Photos

Actor (24 Credits)

Title Role Year

Days of Our Lives (TV Show)

13203 — 2017
13202 — 2017
13201 — 2017

Valerie Grant 2017

The Flash (TV Show)

The Reverse-Flash Returns — 2016

Francine 2016

When Marnie Was There (Movie)

Hisako 2015

Tyler Perry's Temptation (Movie)

Janice 2013

Lincoln Heights (TV Show)

Bully for You — 2009
Ode to Joy — 2008

Naomi Bradshaw 2008 - 2009

Knight Rider (TV Show)

Don't Stop the Knight — 2009

Ambassador Olara Kumali 2009

Flirting With Forty (TV Show)


Cold Case (TV Show)

Shuffle, Ball Change — 2007

Crystal Stacy 2007

Ice Spiders (TV Show)

Dr. April Summers

Soul Food (TV Show)

Don't Think This Hasn't Been Fabulous — 2004
Fear Eats the Soul — 2004
In the Garden — 2004

Maxine 2004

Punks (Movie)

Jennifer 2001

Total Recall 2070 (TV Show)

Self Inflicted — 1999

Violet Whims 1999

The Pretender (TV Show)

Collateral Damage — 1998

Denise Clements 1998

Malcolm & Eddie (TV Show)

Big Brother Is Watching — 1996


Chicago Hope (TV Show)

Back to the Future — 1996

Dr. Grace Carr 1996

Murder One (TV Show)

Chapter Twenty-One — 1996
Chapter Twenty-Two — 1996
Chapter Six — 1995

Lila Marquette 1995 - 1996

Buddies (TV Show)

Marry Me...Sort Of — 1996

Janice 1996

Mother (Movie)

Donna 1996

Living Single (TV Show)

Another Saturday Night — 1995

Princess 1995

Melrose Place (TV Show)

Love Thy Neighbor: Best Moments of Melrose Place — 1995
Suspicious Minds — 1993
Pushing Boundaries — 1993

Rhonda Blair 1993 - 1995

Drop Squad (Movie)

Mali 1994

Candyman (Movie)

Anne-Marie McCoy 1992

New Jack City (Movie)

Keisha 1991

Fatal Bond (Movie)

Waitress 1991

Voice (2 Credits)

Title Role Year

Doc McStuffins (TV Show)

Toy Hospital: Lambie and the Mcstuffins Babies — 2017

Delilah 2017

Heavy Gear (TV Show)

Marcus Rover Highlights — 2002
The Most Dangerous Gear — 2002
Mercenary Gambit — 2001

Sonja Briggs 2001 - 2002

Guest (2 Credits)

Title Role Year

Baisden After Dark (TV Show)

Baisden After Dark — 2012


Good Morning America (TV Show)

Good Morning America — 2010


Appearing (1 Credits)

Title Role Year

American Music Awards (TV Show)