- Began acting at the age of 6 after a teacher suggested that the "class clown" audition for a play.
- Introduced many minority youths to the works of Shakespeare through his participation in Joseph Papp's Shakespeare productions in New York. He would like to play Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet.
- His first feature role was in the Oscar-winning 1989 Oliver Stone film, Born on the Fourth of July.
- His performance in August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Piano Lesson earned a 1990 Tony nomination. He originated his character, Lymon, at Yale Rep in 1987.
- Wanted a change from his Roc sitcom character (a wisecracking woman-chaser), which led him, thanks to his friendship with Mark Harmon from their Chicago Hope days, to a serious dramatic role as NCIS director Leon Vance on NCIS. (On-screen, his character and Harmon's have a tense relationship.)
- 1996, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
- 1997, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
- 1990, Tony — Actor (Featured Role--Play): Nominee
- Gabrielle Bullock — Wife
- Conservatory of Theare Arts at Webster University, St. Louis, Ohio, United States (BFA)