Theresa Elizabeth "Teri" Polo is an American actress who is notable for her roles in Meet the Parents and its two sequels Meet the Fockers and Little Fockers.


Polo was born in Dover, Delaware, to Jane (née Gentry), a homemaker, and Vincent Polo, a stereo systems designer. Polo studied ballet for twelve years, beginning at the age of five. By the time she was thirteen years old, she was attending New York's School of American Ballet, and after winning a modeling contest, she moved to New York City at the age of seventeen to pursue an acting career. Polo's debut was in TV 101. She also starred in the 1990 miniseries The Phantom of the Opera as Christine Daae. She then portrayed Detective Ash on the TV series Brimstone and also became a regular cast member on the last season of the comedy-drama series Northern Exposure. Additionally, she appeared in a recurring guest role in the sixth and seventh seasons of The West Wing, in which she played the role of Helen Santos, the wife of a Democratic presidential candidate.

In February of 2005, Polo appeared on the cover of, and posed nude in an issue of Playboy, which was linked to the release of Meet the Fockers, with cover text that made similar plays on words such as "She's one hot Focker". She was ranked #42 on the Maxim Hot 100 Women of 2002 and was also featured in InStyle. She also starred in the Lifetime Movie Network 2006 movie, Legacy of Fear. In the following year, she starred in a Hallmark Channel movie Love Is A Four Letter Word. In 2009, Polo starred in the feature film 2:13, the Hallmark Channel made-for-TV movie Expecting a Miracle, and The Beacon.

She was featured in the 2009 TV pilot for Washington Field, which was about the National Capital Response Squad, a unit of the FBI that was composed of elite experts in different areas who travel around the world, responding to events that concern American interest. In 2010, Polo reprised her role as Pam Focker in Little Fockers, the sequel to Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers, and she also appeared in the 1980s-styled horror-fantasy film, The Hole. Her most recent appearance is her role in the ABC series The Fosters, where she portrays a homosexual police officer named Stef Foster, who is also a mother to three children, one from her previous heterosexual marriage, and the other two twins which she and her partner, Lena, foster adopted when they were five years old; they are also fostering two more kids. Polo has also made numerous guest appearances on TV shows, which include The Practice, Felicity, Chicago Hope, Numb3rs, Sports Night, Frasier, Medium, Law & Order: LA, Castle, and Criminal Minds.

In April 1997, Polo married Anthony Moore, a photographer, with whom she had a son named Griffin, who was born on 2002. In 2005, Polo and Moore divorced. The following year, while on the set of a video, Polo met drummer Jamie Wollam, who became her partner. They had a daughter together, named Bailey, who was born on 2007.

On Criminal MindsEdit

Polo portrayed mentally-unstable spree killer and statutory rapist Margaret Hallman in the Season Seven episode I Love You, Tommy Brown.


  • The Fosters (2013) as Stef Foster (10 episodes)
  • The Christmas Heart (2012) as Ann Norman
  • Christmas Angel (2012) as Melinda Davis
  • Criminal Minds - I Love You, Tommy Brown (2012) TV episode - Margaret Hallman
  • Beyond (2012) as Sarah Noble
  • A Taste of Romance (2012) as Sara Westbrook
  • Man Up (2011-2012) as Theresa Hayden Keen/Teresa Hayden Keen/Theresa Hayden (13 episodes)
  • We Have Your Husband (2011) as Jayne Valseca
  • Law & Order: LA (2010-2011) as Casey Winters (3 episodes)
  • Castle (2011) as Kayla Baron
  • Little Fockers (2010) as Pam Focker
  • Glory Daze (2010) as Professor Larsen (2 episodes)
  • Medium (2010) as Mary-Louise Graff
  • Monk (2009) as Stephanie Briggs
  • Washington Field (2009) as SA Amanda Diaz
  • The Beacon (2009) as Bryn Shaw
  • The Hole (2009) as Susan
  • Drop Dead Diva (2009) as Jillian Ford
  • The Storm (2009) as Danni Nelson
  • 2:13 (2009) as Amanda Richardson
  • Ghost Whisperer (2009) as Nikki (2 episodes)
  • Expecting a Miracle (2009) as Donna Stanhope
  • CSI: Miami (2008) as Jill Walsh
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (2008) as Dana Kelley
  • Finnegan (2008) as Det. Erin Finnegan
  • The Wedding Bells (2007) as Jane Bell (4 episodes)
  • Full of It (2007) as Mrs. Moran
  • Love Is a Four Letter Word (2007) as Emily Bennett
  • Numb3rs (2007) as Rachel Willons
  • Legacy of Fear (2006) as Detective Jeanne "JJ" Joyce
  • The West Wing (2005-2006) as Helen Santos (18 episodes)
  • For the Love of a Child (2006) as Yvonne
  • Meet the Fockers (2004) as Pam Byrnes
  • I'm with Her (2003-2004) as Alex Young (22 episodes)
  • Beyond Borders (2003) as Charlotte Jordan
  • The Practice (2003) as Sarah Barker (5 episodes)
  • Dragnet (2003) as Jessie Ross
  • Straight from the Heart (2003) as Jordan Donovan
  • Second String (2002) as Connie Heller
  • Domestic Disturbance (2001) as Susan
  • The Unsaid (2001) as Barbara Lonigan
  • Frasier (2000) as Abby Michaels
  • Meet the Parents (2000) as Pam Byrnes
  • Sports Night (1999-2000) as Rebecca Wells (8 episodes)
  • Felicity (1999) as Maggie Sherwood (5 episodes)
  • Brimstone (1998-1999) as Ashur Badaktu/Det. Sgt. Delilah Ash/Det. Sgt. Deliah Ash (6 episodes)
  • The Marriage Fool (1998) as Susan Prescot
  • The Outer Limits (1998) as Sally McCoy
  • A Father for Brittany (1998) as Kim Lussier
  • House of Frankenstein (1997) as Grace Dawkins
  • A Prayer in the Dark (1997) as Janet Hayworth
  • Van Helsing Chronicles (1997) as Helena Harker
  • Full Circle (1996) as Tana Roberts
  • The Arrival (1996) as Char
  • Northern Exposure (1994-1995) as Michelle Schodowski Capra (15 episodes)
  • Chicago Hope (1995) as Nurse Sarah Jane Petty
  • Tales from the Crypt (1994) as Sheila
  • Due South (1994) as Stephanie Cabot
  • Golden Gate (1994) as Cynthia
  • The House of the Spirits (1993) as Rosa del Valle
  • Quick (1993) as Quick
  • Aspen Extreme (1993) as Robin Hand
  • Passed Away (1992) as Rachel Scanlan
  • Mystery Date (1991) as Geena Matthews
  • Born to Ride (1991) as Beryl Ann Devers
  • People Like Us (1990) as Justine Altemus Slatkin
  • The Phantom of the Opera (1990) as Christine Daee
  • TV 101 (1988-1989) as Amanda Hampton (13 episodes)
  • Loving (1983) as Kristin Larsen, 1986


For an up-to-date filmography, see here.

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