Jimmy was born in 1955 to a Surinamese father and Puerto Rican mother. His father was a silk screen plant manager and his mother was a nurse. He was two older sisters.
From his days at Thomas Jefferson High School in Brooklyn, he enjoyed acting. His family did not traditionally go far in education, and when he fathered a child at 19 and married young, things looked bleak. However, he went on to study drama at Brooklyn College, graduating in 1980 with a Bachelor of Arts and Theatre degree. He also earned a BA and an MA (Cornell University).
With small roles in shows like Miami Vice
, he got his big break in 1986 in LA Law
, and followed it up with an award-winning stint in NYPD Blue
He divorced Barbara after 8 years in 1983. Together they have two children (Taina (b. 1973) and Joaquin (b. 1983)), and has been with Wanda de Jesus since 1985.
Jimmy's career has gone from strength to strength with small screen success in The West Wing
and big screen appearances the Prequels to Star Wars