‘NCIS’: Who Plays Agent Paula Cassidy?

NCIS agent Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly) has had quite a few flirtatious exchanges with colleagues. One agent who caught his eye is Special Agent Paula Cassidy. Who is the actress who plays Paula? Here’s what Showbiz Cheat Sheet knows.

Special Agent Paula Cassidy on ‘NCIS’

Michael Weatherly, Mark Harmon, and Cote de Pablo | Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images

Viewers are first introduced to Paula during NCIS Season 1, Episode 8 (titled “Minimum Security”). Paula is being investigated after a Navy translator is found dead at Guantanamo Bay. He died after swallowing a bunch of emeralds.

While Tony is helping with the investigation, he develops a bit of a crush on Paula. Gibbs is suspicious of her, but it later becomes clear that she didn’t have anything to with the death of the translator.

Who plays Agent Paula Cassidy on ‘NCIS’?

Jessica Steen in 1998 | Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Jessica Steen in 1998 | Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

The actor who plays Paula Cassidy on NCIS is Jessica Steen. She made her acting debut at the age of 8 in the series The Sunrunners. As an adult, she appeared in the 1981 film Threshold, in which she played the role of Tracy Vrain. After that, she appeared on the daytime drama Loving. Steen landed a recurring role on the television series Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future in 1897. She played Corporal Jennifer ‘Pilot’ Chase until 1988.

In 1994, she joined the cast of Earth 2, in which she played the role of Dr. Julia Heller for 21 episodes until 1995. Her other acting roles include appearances in Murder One, Homefront, Armageddon, The Outer Limits, and Heartland.

The early years were rough

During an interview with Rave It Up, Steen says things were rough during the early years of her career. She moved from Canada to New York to do some acting work. She lived in New York from 1989 to 1991. However, she says she was strapped for cash. It took a while for her to find steady work.

“I was so broke,” said Steen. “New York is hard when you’re so broke. So, I said, ‘OK, I’ll try soaps.’ New York is a funny place because when you’re good, it’s great. And when you’re down, it’s hard. New York is your best friend or it’s your worst friend, depending on what’s going on for you. It’s hard; and there are so many highs and so many lows.”

Jessica Steen’s advice for aspiring actors

Here’s the advice Steen has for aspiring actors:

 As with any art, anything that you create, you’re going to have to be good at so many different things other than just the art. Acting is such a small part of the overall toolkit of success. You need to be able to schmooze and know people, you have to connect with people.

And nowadays you have to be really good at PR and social media. You need to be very confident auditioning for things. You have to save your money so you can get through dry seasons. There’s a lot involved with being successful in any kind of art.

What’s next for Jessica Steen?

So far this year, Steen has appeared in The Babysitter, Matching Hearts, and Sacred Lies. There’s no word yet on any new projects.

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