Amy Louise Acker
(born December 5, 1976) is an American actress. She played Winifred
Burkle and Illyria on the TV series Angel and Kelly Peyton on Alias.
Since 2012, she has played Samantha "Root" Groves on Person of
Interest, having become a series regular in season three.
Acker was born and raised in Dallas, Texas, to a homemaker mother
and a lawyer father. She graduated from Lake Highlands High School
in Dallas. She subsequently earned a bachelor's degree in theatre
from Southern Methodist University.
In her junior year of college, Acker modelled for J. Crew catalogue.
She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in the same year. She
worked as a stage actress for several seasons, including a stint at
American Players Theatre in Spring Green, Wisconsin.
Acker made her major television debut when she starred as Winifred
"Fred" Burkle in Angel (seasons 2–5), and also as the character of
Illyria for part of the show's fifth and final season. She won the
2003 Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress on Television for her
She joined the cast of Alias in 2005 for its final season, playing
villainess Kelly Peyton. Acker graduated from guest star to fully
credited cast member as the show entered the final episodes in April
and May 2006. Also in 2005, Acker provided voice acting for the
character of Huntress on the animated series Justice League
Unlimited. She went on to make a guest appearance on How I Met Your
Mother, in which she was reunited with Angel co-star, Alexis Denisof
(the real-life husband of HIMYM star Alyson Hannigan), who had a
recurring role on the show.
She portrayed Dr. Claire Saunders/Whiskey, a recurring character, on
Joss Whedon's Dollhouse. Acker guest-starred in 10 of the 13
episodes of the first season and three episodes of the second.
In 2010, she was a series regular in the ABC drama Happy Town,
portraying the character Rachel Conroy. That same year, she starred
in the season-one finale of the Fox series Human Target, as the
mysterious Katherine Walters. On May 25, 2010, she appeared on CBS's
The Good Wife. She appeared in the horror movie The Cabin in the
Woods, released April 13, 2012. In 2012, she made guest performances
in Warehouse 13, Once Upon A Time, and Grimm. In 2012, she starred
as Beatrice in Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing.
Acker appeared in the sitcom Husbands 's third season as Claudia,
the ex-fiancée of Brady Kelly who unexpectedly shows up. In March
2014, Acker was cast as Audrey, a former lover to Phil Coulson in an
episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..
On April 25, 2003, Acker wed actor James Carpinello in California.
The couple has two children.