Kathy Kinney (born November 3, 1954) is an American actress. She is a versatile character actress who gained considerable popularity in the late 1990s for playing Mimi Bobeck, the outrageously made-up, flamboyantly vulgar, and vindictive nemesis of Drew Carey on the sitcom The Drew Carey Show. She had been involved with television, feature films, and stage work for years.
Kinney was born in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, the daughter of Marian and Harold Kinney, an automobile dealer, and grew up in an Irish American family. She attended the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point, and in 1976 moved to New York City, where she found work as a secretary at WCBS-TV. Her boss enjoyed hunting, and sometimes she chatted with him about his hunting trips, occasionally quipping "So, did you kill anything this week?" She used this experience to inspire her for the role of Mimi. During this time at WCBS she also worked nights at New York comedy clubs to improve her improvisational comedy skills. This eventually led to a job teaching improv classes. One such class had in its attendance Bill Sherwood, a director. He later wrote a part for her in his 1986 film, Parting Glances.
Armed with the success of Parting Glances, Kinney visited friends in Los Angeles, and decided to permanently move there to pursue a career in acting. In L.A., Kinney worked hard as a character actress, getting small roles in various TV series such as Seinfeld(Episode 22 Season 4, The Handicap Spot,) Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Grace Under Fire, Full House, The Larry Sanders Show, and My Name Is Earl. Her first memorable television role is generally considered her regular stint on Newhart as Ms. Goddard, the town librarian (1989-1990).