This former sergeant on "21 Jump Street" and host of "The Talk" has been married for 23 years and is a mother to four children, one of whom has autism.
Her name should ring a bell since she’s been on television since the 80s. She was first Sergeant Judy Hoffs in “21 Jump Street” then Vanessa Cooper in “Hanging with Mr. Cooper.” In the late 90s she was Malena Ellis in “For Your Love,” and between 2010 and 2011, she was in the reality show “The Celebrity Apprentice,” and “The Talk” as herself. If these shows aren’t enough to clue you in on who we’re talking about then maybe her latest reality series will. She’s the star of her family’s show, “Meet the Peetes.”
Yes, we’re talking about Holly Robinson-Peete, Mrs. to NFL quarterback Rodney Peete and daughter of “Sesame Street’s” Matthew Robinson who famously played Gordon in the show.
Holly has entertainment breathing in her veins. Her resume spans almost five decades on television beginning with a 1969 cameo in her father’s children’s show. Along with a string of TV appearances between the 80s up to the present, she also appeared in several films including “Howard the Duck”, “Speed Dating,” “21 Jump Street,” and “Instant Moon.”
But while she was doing all that, she also became a wife and a mother to four children. A recent photo of her family reveals her kids are all grown up and her husband is right there with them.
Holly, 54, boasts of a 22-year-marriage and a family she devoted a lot of time to. One of their sons, Rodney Jr. was diagnosed with autism when he was a toddler. It took her weeks to come into terms with it and when she did, she focused all her energy in dealing with it.
Rodney credits Holly for being their family’s rock. He told The New York Times in March 2018, “She is family first and keeping the family strong and right. I have to fight for her to take time for herself. She doesn’t always do that.”
Holly also admitted in the same interview that she was a “millennial mom” who was “controlling, impatient, and blunt.” She explained,
“As a special needs mom you don’t take no for an answer, and that can make you a ball-buster. Rodney lets me know I have to soften my edges, listen, be patient and not be judgmental. I hear that from my kids, too. I need to slow down and relinquish control.”
But Holly’s journey as a mother didn’t end with rearing her children. She made sure others learned from her experience by writing a children’s book together with her daughter, Ryan Elizabeth Peete. The 2010 book, “My Brother Charlie,” was based on her own experiences living with an autistic child. It won several awards including the Dolly Gray Children’s Literature Award and an NAACP Award.
Moreover, Holly and Rodney founded the HollyRod Foundation which raises funds for the fight against autism and Parkinson’s disease.
Today, Holly’s family life is an open book with their Hallmark show, “Meet the Peetes.” It began airing in 2018 and has been picked up for a second season. The reality show features Holly and Rodney balancing their careers while raising four kids and with a foundation to run. It is the best way to get to know her beautiful family and the life she made for them.