Sarah Shahi is an American television actress, model, and former NFL Cheerleader. She is best known for her roles on USA Network’s Fairly Legal, NBC’s Life, and CBS’s Person of Interest. She began her career as a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader at the age of 19 before transitioning to acting.
Shahi was born in Euless, Texas to a Spanish mother and Iranian father. She studied theatre at Southern Methodist University and worked as an actress in Dallas theatres before moving to Los Angeles in 1999 to pursue an acting career. Her first major television role was playing Kate Reed on the USA Network legal drama Fairly Legal from 2011-2012. She then joined the cast of NBC’s drama Life from 2007-2009 as Detective Dani Reese. From 2011-2016 Shahi starred as Sameen Shaw on CBS’s Person of Interest.
In addition to her acting career, Shahi has also appeared in numerous magazines including Maxim, FHM, Shape Magazine, Playboy, GQ France and Men’s Health Italy. She was named #82 in Maxims Hot 100 List for 2008 and was chosen as one of People Magazine’s “100 Most Beautiful People” in 2009.
Shahi has also served as an ambassador for the Global Lyme Alliance and is an advocate for awareness of the disease. She has written about her experience with Lyme Disease in a column for The Huffington Post and participated in walks to raise money for research into the illness. In 2018, she was honored by Global Lyme Alliance with their Humanitarian Award for her work on behalf of those suffering from Lyme Disease.