Ellen Kathleen Pompeo is an American actress. She is best known for her role on Grey's Anatomy as the titular Dr. Meredith Grey. One of the world's highest paid actors since 2017, she has made multiple appearances on the Forbes’ year-end lists. Her accolades include a Screen Actors Guild Award and a nomination for a Golden Globe Award. Born in Everett, Massachusetts, Pompeo moved to Miami and then New York City, where a casting director discovered her and signed her for an ad campaign for L'Oreal. She made her screen debut with NBC's legal drama Law & Order, then guest-starred in other television shows, including the comedy Strangers with Candy, the medical drama Strong Medicine and the sitcom Friends. She made her feature film debut in 1999 with the romantic comedy Coming Soon, and went on to play minor roles in films like In the Weeds and Mambo Café but found little initial success. A turning point came in her career in 2002, when she gained wide recognition for her starring role in Brad Silberling's drama Moonlight Mile. Pompeo was then cast in ABC's popular medical drama Grey's Anatomy, and gained worldwide recognition for her portrayal of the title character Dr. Meredith Grey. The role on the long-running series earned her a Screen Actors Guild Award. The character became widely popular, making Pompeo one of the most renowned television actresses. In 2016, she was ranked fourth in the list of highest paid TV actresses by Forbes, with earnings of $14.9 million; she became the third highest paid female and the fifth highest paid actor overall in 2018 with earnings of $23.6 million. She was also the highest ranked actress from a drama series on the list. Pompeo's other film roles include the comedy Old School (2003), the superhero film Daredevil (2003), the caper film Art Heist (2004), and the comedy drama Life of the Party (2005). In addition to her acting career, she has directed two episodes of Grey's Anatomy and founded a production company, Calamity Jane. She has been married to music producer Chris Ivery since 2007; they have three children.