JoAnna Garcia Swisher has been acting since she was a teen, breaking through as Reba McEntire’s daughter on the CW sitcom “Reba.” The actress returns to the small screen in ABC’s “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World” in October. She also runs the Swisher Family Foundation with her husband, former pro baseball player Nick Swisher, which is devoted to helping needy children.
What intrigued you about “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World”?
There are so many incredible themes in the show. It’s a lot about reconnecting with your family and forgiveness and spirituality. It felt very different, and something that I hadn’t really done before.
How did you get involved in acting?
I had to have an extracurricular activity when I was a kid. I played tennis pretty seriously, and when I burned out on that around 10, my parents were like, “You gotta choose something different.” There was a little theater company in our area in Tampa. I auditioned for their first play, and I got bitten by the bug. I was able to start working on a professional level almost instantly. It really felt like I was doing what I was meant to be doing.
What inspired you to start the Swisher Family Foundation with your husband?
One of the things that attracted me to him was that he has such a philanthropic heart. We feel passionately about families and children and giving back and giving a leg up.
Have you learned anything surprising from running a charity?
Things can get crazy at times, considering what my husband and I do for a living; we’re relocating and moving all over the place, and then add two children to the mix. The Swisher Family Foundation and our commitment to it has really slowed things down for us, made us take a deep breath and just say, “Hey, look around and know that we are very blessed. We should try to bring that sense of blessings to other people who may be less fortunate.” I wouldn’t say anything’s surprised me. I would say it’s incredibly fulfilling.
What would you be doing if acting hadn’t worked out?
Interior design. I spend a great deal of time working on my houses and helping friends with their houses, and I’m constantly on design blogs. It’s a great love of mine. I would probably be doing that full-time.
Things you didn’t know about JoAnna Garcia Swisher
AGE: 37 BIRTHPLACE: Tampa, Fla. GUILTY PLEASURE TV SHOW: “Home and Garden” LAST BINGE-WATCHED: “The Crown,” “Big Little Lies,” “The Handmaid’s Tale” FAVORITE MOVIE THIS YEAR: “Wonder Woman” HIDDEN TALENT: Tennis FAVORITE FOOD: Greek/Mediterranean