Nia Peeples was born in Hollywood, California, USA on December 10, 1961. She grew up in West Covina, CA with her parents and two sisters, Paula and Cynthia. Since she was eight years old, she first began performing with her family, giving concerts for community groups and conventions and doing dances of different cultures: Polynesian, Spanish and Irish. Nia Peeples attended West Corvina High School and was an 'A' average student. She was a member of the marching band, involved in cheerleading, tumbling, volleyball, student government, choral singing and singing for a rock 'n roll band. She starred in the school production of South Pacific, as Bloody Mary. She got her first standing ovation for her performance.
She went to study music at UCLA on a scholastic scholarship, during which time she performed as Liberace's opening act in Las Vegas on weekends. She took one semester as a voice major. She dropped out of UCLA and took threee jobs in order to afford acting lessons. She studied singing for Gloria Rush and the Sandford Meisner acting technique at Playhouse West.
She was discovered by producers and directors one day when she went to a friend's rehearsal. She was cast in the play, Music Shop. This lead to guest appearances on the television show, Hardcastle and McCormack and T.J. Hooker. Her first starting role when she played opposite William Atherton in the HBO film, A Single Light (1981) in which she portrayed a deaf girl. She auditioned and won the part of Nicole Chapman on the series, Fame (1982). More recently, she played Texas Ranger Sydney Cooke alongside acting legends Chuck Norris and Judson Mills on Walker, Texas Ranger. Her hobbies include hiking, tandem surfing, rollerblading and skiing. She also does a lot of charity work. She is of Scottish/Filipino descent.