Kirsten Vangsness is an American actress best known for her role as Audio/Visual Tech Penelope Garcia on the police procedural television series Criminal Minds.
In 2011 she starred in the Criminal Minds spin-off Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, in the same role.
In the L.A. theatre community and as a performance artist, Kirsten Vangsness' work has garnered her the 15 Minutes of Fem Best Actress Award, the Los Angeles Drama Critics Award for Best Emerging Comic Actress and the coveted Golden Betty Award.
Her theatre credits include numerous West Coast premieres of original plays including A Mulholland Christmas Carol (L.A. Weekly Award), Book of Liz, Fan Maroo, Perfuct and Steaming City. In the summer of 2007 she starred in the West Coast premiere of Neil LaBute's Fat Pig at the Geffen Playhouse.
Vangsness' short plays have appeared in the Los Angeles Times Magazine as well as in theatres throughout Los Angeles. She is a member of Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood, California.
Her television credits include Phil of the Future and LAX. She has appeared in the feature film A-List, the independent film Shooting Blanks and the soon to be released In My Sleep.
Vangsness lives in Los Angeles.