Virginia Elizabeth "Geena" Davis (born January 21, 1956) is an American actress and activist. One of the most popular actresses of the 1980s and 1990s, she has received numerous accolades for her acting work in both film and television, and is noted for her portrayals of strong and authentic female characters as well as her involvement in advocacy for women in the industry.
Having graduated with a bachelor's degree in drama from Boston University in 1979, Davis signed with New York's Zoli modeling agency and started her career as a model. She made her acting debut in the film Tootsie (1982), and starred in the thriller The Fly (1986), which proved to be one of her first box office hits. While the fantasy comedy Beetlejuice (1988) brought her to international prominence, the drama The Accidental Tourist (also 1988) earned her the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She cemented her leading actress status with her performance in the road film Thelma & Louise (1991), receiving a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress. Davis's roles in the box office failures Cutthroat Island (1995) and The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996), both directed by then-husband Renny Harlin, were followed by a lengthy break and downturn in her career.
Davis starred as the adoptive mother of the titular character in the Stuart Little franchise (1999–2005) and as the first female president of the United States in the television series Commander in Chief (2005–2006), winning the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama for her role in the latter. Her later films include Accidents Happen (2009) and Marjorie Prime (2017). She has portrayed the recurring role of Dr. Nicole Herman in Grey's Anatomy (2014–2015, 2018), and also starred as Regan MacNeil-Angela Rance in the first season of the horror television series The Exorcist (2017).
In 2004, Davis launched the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, which works collaboratively with the entertainment industry to dramatically increase the presence of female characters in media. Through the organization, she launched the annual Bentonville Film Festival in 2015, and executive produced the documentary This Changes Everything in 2018.