Trivia

→ Has taught acting classes with her husband, Randle Mell, even after being nominated for an Academy Award.
→ Listed as one of twelve “Promising New Actors of 1990” in John Willis’ Screen World, Vol. 42.
→ Attended Fredonia State University.
→ Was a cast member of the medical drama E/R (1984) and also has a recurring role on the 1990s medical drama of nearly the same name, ER (1994).
→ Moved to Los Angeles, California, as an adult with her husband and daughter.
→ Though born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, she was raised in Ithaca, New York.
→ Plays the First Lady during a devastating attack by aliens in Independence Day (1996), and the President after a devastating attack by robots in Battlestar Galactica (2004).
→ Has appeared in four films with Alfre Woodard: Grand Canyon (1991), Passion Fish (1992), Blue Chips (1994) and Mumford (1999).
→ Has been a huge fan of Vanessa Redgrave since the 1970s.
→ Twice played alongside a non-human named Boomer; a dog in Independence Day (1996) and a Cylon in Battlestar Galactica (2004).
→ Was offered the part of May-Alice Culhane in Passion Fish (1992) before it was even written.
→ The role of Laura Roslin in Battlestar Galactica (2004) was written with her in mind. She was the first actor offered the role by creator Ronald D. Moore.
→ Was a competitive and synchronized swimmer as a child and still swims to keep in shape.
→ After graduation, she moved to New York City. While looking for acting work, she supported herself by selling Fuller brushes door to door in Rockefeller Center. In the classic struggling-actress tradition, she also worked as a waitress.
→ Mary and her family lived for a time just outside Philadelphia in Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania, where she attended Port Kennedy Kindergarten, 1957-58.
→ She is part of the National Advisory Board for the Cathy and Jesse Marion Art Gallery of Fredonia State University of New York (more info at www.fredonia.edu. Thanks to @ilonarcari for providing us with this info)

info taken from imdb.com