In the cosmos of “Star Trek: Voyager,” Jennifer Lien captivated audiences as Kes, but her life post-Hollywood has veered into a less stellar orbit. This article explores the tumultuous journey of Lien, whose path diverged sharply from the bright lights of her Starfleet days.
Jennifer Anne Lien was born in Palos Heights, Illinois, on August 24th, 1974. Growing up in a rough Chicago neighborhood, Lien turned to acting as an escape, honing her craft at the Illinois Theater Center and the Professional Children’s School before her brief but notable stint in Hollywood.
Jennifer Lien’s first paid acting job was in a bubble gum commercial playing a set of twins. Her first uncredited television appearance was as a student in the 1990 drama series Brewster Place, starring Oprah Winfrey. That same year she provided dubbing work for the french horror film Baby Blood.
In 1991 she moved to New York and joined the soap opera Another World cast as Hannah Moore. This is primarily considered to be her first major credit, and she would make appearances in 35 episodes of the show from 1991 to 1992.
Jennifer Lien’s acting career began with a bubble gum commercial and an uncredited role in Oprah Winfrey’s “Brewster Place” in 1990, followed by voice work in the French horror film “Baby Blood.” Moving to New York in 1991, she gained recognition in “Another World” as Hannah Moore, leading to roles in TV series like “Phenom” and voice acting in “Duckman” and “Superman: The Animated Series.”
Her film career included notable parts in “American History X” and “SLC Punk,” but she is most famous for playing Kes in “Star Trek: Voyager” from 1995 to 2000.
Despite being a beloved part of the early Voyager ensemble, she was written off due to the writers’ challenges with her character and her own personal struggles, later making a final appearance in 2000 after being replaced by Jeri Ryan’s Seven of Nine.
After the birth of her son, Jennifer Lien retired from acting to pursue a career in nutrition, successfully transitioning into this new field. However, her post-acting life has been marred by legal troubles.
In April 2015, Lien faced allegations of ramming a police cruiser, resisting arrest, and charges of reckless endangerment and aggravated assault.
A more serious incident followed in September 2015 in Tennessee, where she was accused of indecent exposure towards children, involving a dispute where she allegedly exposed herself and later resisted arrest while unclothed, also reportedly threatening the officers. Further issues arose in 2018 with multiple driving violations in Tennessee, leading to the revocation of her driving license.
What is Jennifer Lien Doing Now?
As of now, Jennifer Lien remains retired from acting, having stepped away from the limelight that once shone on her during her Hollywood days. She has chosen a path of privacy, maintaining a life far removed from the public eye.
There have been no recent news updates, interviews, or public appearances, and she is notably absent from social media platforms. This silence and absence of information have left her current endeavors and lifestyle largely a mystery to both fans and the media. In this quietude, Lien seems to have found a personal space, disconnected from the world that once knew her as a star in the Star Trek universe.
Amidst this privacy, we hope that she is doing well both physically and mentally, and we extend our wishes for health, happiness, and success to her and her family.
Jennifer Lien is married to writer and filmmaker Phil Hwang, though details of their marriage remain private. Phil, known for works like “Superboy: The Tween Years” and “Outcall”, shares a son, Jonah Hwang, with Jennifer, born on September 5th, 2002. Jonah has embarked on his own acting journey, with appearances in TV series such as “Shameless", “Henry Danger”, and “Crown Lake”.