Get a weekly dose of MANDATORY by signing up for our newsletter.
Rachel Emily Nichols was born on January 8, 1980 in Augusta, Maine to parents Alison and Jim Nichols. During her days at Cony High School, Rachel participated in track and field, with her focus being the high jump. By her sophomore year, she was studying abroad in France.
Once college rolled around, Rachel headed to New York City’s Columbia University, where she graduated with a double major in Math and Economics. It was while attending Columbia that she stumbled into her career as a model. She was literally discovered by a modeling agent while eating lunch one day. From here, she was whisked off to Paris, France, and spent the remainder of her college years traveling back and forth, as she shot ad campaigns for famous brands such as Abercrombia & Fitch, Guess?, and L’Oreal.
More: The MLB's Hottest WAGs
With modeling well under her belt, Rachel decided it was time to change her career path and focus on acting. She started out with commercials and bit parts in films, such as the role of “model in a bar” in the 2000 film “Autumn in New York.” In 2002, she finally landed the role of Alexa on the hit HBO series “Sex and the City.” The part required her to shoot a threesome scene with Kim Cattrall. By 2003, Rachel had already booked her first feature film role in the comedy prequel “Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd.”
While the “Dumb and Dumber” prequel was pretty well critically panned, it didn’t hinder Rachel’s career one bit, as her star continued to rise in Hollywood. By 2005, she won her first starring role in the short lived FOX series “The Inside,” co-starring Adam Baldwin. Since then, she’s been cast in series regular roles on “Alias,” “Criminal Minds,” and the recent Syfy series “Continuum.”
Rachel’s acting credits don’t stop there, either. When it comes to feature films, she’s been no slouch, keeping herself busy for the last several years. Her most notable roles have been in films “The Amityville Horror” (2005), “P2,” “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2,” “Star Trek,” “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra,” “Conan the Barbarian” (2011), and “Alex Cross.”