Loretta Swit (born November 4, 1937) is an American stage and television actress known for her character roles. The naturally blonde Swit is best-known for her two-time Emmy-winning portrayal of Major Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan on M*A*S*H.
Swit was born in Passaic, New Jersey. She studied with Gene Frankel in Manhattan and considered him her acting coach. She regularly returned to his studio to speak with aspiring actors throughout her career. Swit is also a singer who trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts before entering the theater. She graduated from Pope Pius XII High School in Passaic, NJ, in 1955.
In 1967, Swit toured with the national company of Any Wednesday, starring Gardner McKay. She would continue as one of the Pigeon sisters opposite Don Rickles and Ernest Borgnine in a Los Angeles run of The Odd Couple.