Who Is Kerri Higuchi, John Cho’s Wife?

Kerri Higuchi
Profile summary of Kerri Higuchi
  • Name: Kerri Higuchi
  • Date of birth: February 28
  • Age: N/A
  • Place of birth: Seoul, South Korea
  • Nationality: Korean-American
  • Education: University of Berkeley, California
  • Parents: Day and Charlotte Higuchi
  • Marital status: Married
  • Spouse: John Cho
  • Height: 5 feet 7 inches
  • Occupation: Actress, screenwriter, and movie director
  • Years active: 1999-2015
  • Net worth: $1 million

Kerri Higuchi is a South Korean-American actress, screenwriter, and movie director who is primarily known for appearing in the long-running hit series, Grey’s Anatomy. Higuchi is one of the few Korean actresses who received a lot of recognition and screen time in Hollywood during the early 2000s. She famously appeared in several hit movies, including the 2002 thriller Enough featuring Jennifer Lopez, Sorority Boys (2002), World Inside Me (2002), and Day of Independence (2003).

Kerri Higuchi is also famously married to fellow Korean-American actor John Cho of the Harold and Kumar franchise – he played Harold Lee. Her marriage to such a prominent actor has further thrust her into the spotlight, and even though she seems to prefer a much quieter life, it doesn’t in any way reduce the curiosity she inspires from American movie lovers.

Background details – what is Kerri Higuchi’s nationality?

Kerri Higuchi was born in Silverlake, Los Angeles, United States of America, to Korean-American academic parents. Her exact year of birth isn’t available so her age can only be guessed by estimate, but online sources have revealed her birthday to be February 28. Her father, Day Higuchi, is a third-generation Japanese immigrant who came to America during World War II.

He is also the former associate director of the Institute for Standards Curriculum and Assessments (ISCA) and also held other prominent positions like the president of United Teachers Los Angeles. Kerri’s mother Charlotte was a university professor who led the ISCA board of directors for over 28 years before retiring. Judging by her parents’ backgrounds, we can see that Kerri is a first-generation Korean-American and a fourth-generation Japanese-American.

She falls snugly under the Pisces zodiac sun sign. Information like what high schools Kerri Higuchi attended are unfortunately beyond our reach and that of so many others as well.

Also, it is unknown whether the Korean actress had any siblings. Given how busy and professionally driven both of her parents were, it’s not out of place to suggest that Kerri might very well have been their only child. It’s also quite plausible that she attended high school in Los Angeles, as that is where she was raised. There are also speculations that she attended the University of Berkeley, California, but this has never actually been confirmed by her or anyone else.

Career exploits

Kerri Higuchi is known for much more than merely being John Cho’s wife. The mother-of-two has a lot of acting credits under her belt, and at a point was one of the few actresses who gave Koreans much-needed Hollywood representation. Apart from being an actress, she was also a screenwriter and movie director with a number of works under each. Contrary to what many might think, Higuchi didn’t become an actress immediately after college.

A certain online report revealed that she only took interest in Hollywood after she saw an article written by the New York Times on her father. It’s not quite clear how this inspired her to pursue an acting career, but she did anyway. At the time, she was a teacher at the Pacific Hills School in Los Angeles. Kerri Higuchi decided to take acting classes, particularly in stage acting.

She debuted sometime in the mid-nineties, mostly featuring in unremarkable roles that needed an Asian character. Her main debut was in 2002 in the Jennifer Lopez-featured drama Enough. There, she appeared as a ticket seller. Other Kerri Higuchi projects as an actress include Flashforward as Hitomi (2009), Scandal as an unnamed female librarian, Selfie as Michelle, and most notably Grey’s Anatomy as Dr. Chen.

Kerri Higuchi also briefly delved into screenwriting and directing, producing one known movie to date titled, Mr. Isaac in 2005. She didn’t pursue this career path for long, as she retired from the industry soon after the release of her movie.

Her most prominent acting roles

Kerri Higuchi is a brilliant actress and her portfolio speaks for itself. In spite of this, not many movies she has done have boosted her career like the television series, ‘Grey’s Anatomy‘. In the series, she portrayed the character of Elizabeth Chen, as a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist. Higuchi appeared in the first season of the series in the episode, ‘The First Cut Is the Deepest’. She didn’t reappear until the 6th season in an episode titled, ‘Blink’. Chen’s onscreen highlight remains the scene of her tiff with Meredith over a misdiagnosed baby in the nursery.

In 2002, in what still remains one of her most notable on-screen appearances, Kerri featured alongside Jennifer Lopez in 2002 drama-thriller Enough as a ticket seller. Later that year, she appeared in the teen movie, Sorority Boys as a supporting actress. Her last appearance on the big screen is in a 2010 movie called More Things Change as a character named Angel while on the small screen, she was last seen in Scandal in 2015.

Sadly, it appears that Kerri has retired completely from acting. It seems she has found more fulfillment in being a wife and mother and no longer wishes to keep up with the rigors of Hollywood. In her decade-long career, she never won any award nor was she ever nominated for any of her performances.

Kerri Higuchi’s movies and TV shows

Television series

  • ER as Student #2 – 1999
  • Grey’s Anatomy as Dr. Elizabeth Chen / Peds Intern – 2005-2010
  • Without a Trace as Young Woman – 2009
  • Flashforward as Hitomi – 2010
  • Parks and Recreation as Jasmine Hu – 2012
  • Selfie as Michelle – 2014
  • Battle Creek as Carrie – 2015
  • Scandal as Nervous Female Librarian – 2015


  • Sorority Boys as Susie – 2002
  • World Inside Me as Emi – 2002
  • Enough as Ticket Clerk – 2002/I
  • Day of Independence as Choir Member (uncredited) – 2003
  • Hollywood Residential as Kerri Cho – 2008
  • More Things Change as Angel – 2010

What is Kerri Higuchi’s net worth?

As earlier stated, Kerri Higuchi acted professionally for only about 10 years. According to IMDb, Higuchi featured in a total of 14 projects, including television series and films. Her stint as a director didn’t last very long, but her movie was quite successful. In all of this, Kerri Higuchi is said to be worth an estimated $1 million. Most of this was earned from her movie appearances, and the rest is believed to be the revenue from her movie.

While highly successful in her own right, Kerri’s net worth is a far cry from her husband’s–who is said to be worth over $20 million as of 2021. John Cho’s acting filmography consists of much bigger box office hits than his wife’s. Also, he has remained active in the industry, even till now, and so it’s no surprise that he is worth more than she is.

Inside Kerri Higuchi and John Cho’s marriage

The ‘Harold and Kumar’ franchise actor, John Cho, revealed a long time ago that he met his wife as a college student back at UC Berkeley. It was this news that gave rise to the belief that Kerri was also a student in that same college. However, they didn’t immediately take off with their romance. It would take another couple of years before the two eventually began dating, by this time they had both moved to Los Angeles and were both actors.

Although neither of them has confirmed it, it’s believed they reconnected on the Grey’s Anatomy movie set, as Cho also appeared in season 2 of the series in an episode titled ‘Damage Case’. In 2015, John spoke in an interview with Glamor magazine and revealed that it was Kerri’s innate confidence that made her so attractive to him. He gushed over his wife’s self-awareness, especially as he considered himself lacking in that area. Anyway, they began dating in 2005 and probably dated a couple of months more before finally getting hitched in 2006.

Read Also: Liz Gallardo Bio – All You Need To Know About The Mexican Actress

Kerri Higuchi and John Cho have been married for 17 years

Kerri Higuchi

Kerri Higuchi and John Cho image source

The details of Kerri and John’s marriage aren’t public knowledge and we suspect Kerri had something to do with it (given her penchant for staying out of the spotlight). The lovers decided to take things up a notch and got married after only dating for a few months in 2006. According to John Cho, the wedding location was somewhere in Northern California and the wedding took place on New Year’s Eve.

He fondly recalled that night as one of his best memories, giddily explaining that he “was just fuzzy with affection that night.” He also called his wedding celebration a “big deal”, saying that planning a wedding was like “putting on a one-night-only show” where he was the producer, director, and star, all at once. Kerri Higuchi and her handsome beau have been married for over 17 years now, and are still going steady and strong, with no scandals in their beautiful union.

Does Kerri Higuchi have children?

As mentioned earlier, Kerri is a mother to two children. The couple welcomed their first son nearly two years after they got married in 2008. They named their son Kage Cho and he is 16 years old. Their second and only daughter was born in a Los Angeles hospital in 2013. She is about 11 years old and her name was never revealed to the public. Kerri decided to allow her career to take a back seat, so she could be a stay-at-home mom for her children. They all live in Los Angeles, California.

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