Born: October 13, 1968, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Tisha Campbell-Martin (née Campbell), was born in Oklahoma City, OK, and raised in Newark, New Jersey, where she attended Newark Arts High School. Her mother, Mona (née Raye) Shockley (now Washington), was a nurse, talent manager, gospel singer, and vocal coach. Her father, Clifton Campbell, was a factory worker and singer and does magic tricks at the Fridays restaurant in Winchester, VA. Her parents encouraged her love for music. Tisha has an older brother, three younger brothers and a younger sister.
Campbell’s first TV appearance was at the age of 6, in a 1974 episode of the PBS show The Big Blue Marble. As a child, she won many talent shows, going on to appear in such children’s programs as Kids Are People Too, Unicorn Tales, and Captain Kangaroo. At age 18, she performed in the musical feature film Little Shop of Horrors as Chiffon, one of The Supremes-like girl-group Greek Chorus, along with future Martin co-star Tichina Arnold. After graduating from the Arts High School in Newark, she moved to Hollywood, where she became a star on the short-lived series Rags to Riches.
In 1992, Campbell released her debut album, Tisha, which was a moderate success, selling 40,000 copies. Two singles received minor airplay on the R&B stations: “Push” and “Love Me Down”. She also contributed vocals for the soundtrack of her 1997 film Sprung, singing on the remake of “Don’t Ask My Neighbor” with good friend, fellow actress and frequent co-star Tichina Arnold. Campbell also appeared in several music videos in the 1990s and 2000s, including two for Will Smith (“Will 2K” and “Wild Wild West”) and Toni Braxton (“You’re Makin' Me High”).
In 1996, Campbell filed a lawsuit against her Martin co-star Martin Lawrence and the show’s producers for sexual harassment and verbal and physical assaults. HBO Studios eventually settled the case with Campbell so that the show’s last season could be completed. Campbell did return to the Martin set to film the last three episodes of the show’s last season under the condition that she would not appear in any scenes with Lawrence. Campbell later became a member of the American Film Institute and the Writer’s Boot Camp. She then produced the film short A Luv Tale about two women who fall in love with each other. The film won many awards, including the Audience Choice Award at the Black Hollywood Film Festival.
Campbell made guest appearances on the television series Everybody Hates Chris and played the matriarch of the Kyle family, Janet "Jay" Kyle, on My Wife and Kids. After My Wife and Kids, Campbell became a part of the sitcoms Rita Rocks and The Protector. In 2012 Campbell starred in Mindless Behavior's music video "Hello." In the video she starred as Prodigy's mom.
On August 17, 1996, she married actor-now-real estate developer Duane Martin. Together they have two sons: Xen and Ezekiel Czar.