BET Award nominee, Omari Hardwick is an actor who became immensely eminent for portraying the character of James Ghost St. Patrick in the crime drama series, Power which has earned him multiple awards and nominations. The one-time college football star whose playing career was ended by injury took a decision to appear before the camera as an actor and began this journey by appearing as extras in sitcoms like Friends and In the House.
He has gone on to become a famed actor in Tinseltown with more than thirty acting roles to his name. Asides garnering fame for his acting talent, Hardwick has been widely recognized for his writing prowess which he has beautifully showcased in more than 4,000 poems. His extraordinary poetic quality also gained him a spot in the top-five finish during the 2003 and 2004 US National Poetry Slam Competition. Discover more details about the early life, accomplishments and married life of the former athlete below.
Omari Hardwick’s Early Life
The proficient poet was born Omari Latif Hardwick to parents Clifford Hardwick III, a lawyer and Joyce Johnson on 9th January 1974. His birthplace is Savannah but he was raised in Decatur, Georgia, United States. While growing up, Omari Hardwick developed a knack for writing poetry which he has nurtured and turned into a career. He completed his high school education at Marist School situated in Atlanta. There, he participated competitively in football, basketball and baseball.
Following his athleticism, he led his high school football team to a State Championship title. While in college, he played as a defensive back for the Furman Purple Paladins for a year, before transferring to the University of Georgia where he also played at the same position. Despite being inclined to sports, Omari Hardwick never let go of his love for arts. This prompted him to minor in Theatre during his college days.
Upon graduation from the university, he wanted to pursue a career as a professional footballer, unfortunately, his dream was cut short by injuries during his brief stint at the National Football League franchise, San Diego Chargers. Nevertheless, he moved on to harness his acting skills by attending acting classes in New York and later in Los Angeles. During such time, he struggled to gain acting roles which left him in a financial delirium and as a result, he began working odd jobs in order to make ends meet.
Acting Career Endeavors and Accomplishments
Omari Hardwick put his acting career to a start by making appearances as extras in Friends and In the House. Then in 2001, he made his movie debut in a film titled, Circles. Three years later, he had a career breakthrough when he depicted the character of Dante Ponce in the TV movie, Sucker Free City. Afterwards, more roles began rolling in for the actor as he was featured in Beauty Shop (2005), Gridiron Gang (2006), The Guardian (2006), Miracle at St. Anna (2008) and CSI: Miami (2008).
He was ushered to the mainstream in 2009 following his delineation of Ty Curtis in a lead role in 20 episodes of the series, Dark Blue. As a result of his performance, the handsome actor nabbed the NAMIC Vision Award nomination. Similarly in 2013, he was nominated for Image Awards and equally took home a Black Reel Award for Outstanding Actor, TV Movie or Mini-Series based on his portrayal of Andrew Daniels in Being Mary Jane.
More so, he subsequently scored roles in Things Never Said (2013), The Last Letter (2013), Reach Me (2014), and Lap Dance (2014), before appearing as Ghost (James St. Patrick); the character he has been delineating in Power since 2014 to date. The series has earned him several recognitions including Vision Award for Best Performance – Drama in 2016 as well as Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series in 2018 and 2019 coupled with numerous nominations.
In addition to his endeavors, the highly skilled poet has co-founded some theatrical groups including Actor’s Lounge, and Plan B Inc. Theatre Group. He also serves as the owner of Brave Life Films, a production company.
Things To Know About Omari Hardwick’s Family Life
1. Omari Hardwick is Happily Married
The award-winning actor is a happily married man who has never fallen short of letting the world know about his blossoming married life whenever the need arises. He solemnized his union with long-time beau, Jennifer Pfautch on 4th May 2012 in Kansas City. Despite the hurdles being thrown at them as a result of their interracial marriage, the two lovebirds have been going strong and are proud parents of two adorable kids; a daughter named Nova and a son who goes by the name, Brave.
2. Marital Challenges
Since Hardwick and his heartthrob became man and wife, they have faced some marital challenges as a result of their racial background. Some of his fans who still uphold racial segregation ideology have criticized the actor who is of African-American ancestry on multiple occasions, questioning his decision to marry Pfautch, a Caucasian by descent.
His better half, on the other hand, has not been spared from the drama as she has been severally insulted and called bad names by these online trolls. Interestingly, Omari Hardwick has proven himself to be a loving husband by constantly defending his wife against the scorching heat from his rude fans who are mainly from the Black community.
Being true to her worth as a love ambassador based on the details on her website, Jennifer Pfautch often replies her haters by wishing them Happy Loving Day, while celebrating the Supreme Court’s decision to do away with all state laws prohibiting interracial marriage in 1967.
3. They Have Been Together For A Long Time
Although Omari Hardwick and his spouse have been married for close to eight years now, they have been together as a couple for more than a decade. How the two met is still a mystery yet to be unfolded but through one of Pfautch’s Instagram post, she revealed that they have been together for long and equally faced some tough times before becoming a man and a wife. She talked about her miscarriage and how they lost their first son who was delivered stillborn at almost eight months in November 2008.
4. His Past Relationships
Prior to meeting his now-wife, Omari Hardwick is said to have dated the former fashion model and actress, Joy Bryant who is best known for her role in Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins. Bryant tied the knot with her man, Dave Pope, a multi-award-winning stuntman, in 2008. Other details of the actor’s past affairs if any, are yet to be disclosed to the public.
5. Who is Omari Hardwick’s Wife
Even though Jennifer Pfautch is often overshadowed by her husband’s fame, she has an alluring profile. The Saint Louis native is a graduate of California Lutheran University where she studied Journalism, Communication and Media Studies. According to her LinkedIn profile, she has worked as a creative executive at Deacon Entertainment; publicist at Paradigm Talent Agency and D’Orazio & Associates; and Freelance Account Manager at Syndicate Media Ground.
She is presently working at her husband’s production company, Brave Life LLC as a Senior Vice President Development. In addition, she runs a website where she posts numerous inspirational quotes and healthy recipes as well. Furthermore, Pfautch has been a strong pillar holding together her husband’s career, as she has encouraged him into taking steps that have changed the course of his career including accepting the role of Ghost in the series, Power.