Entered a local beauty contest in 1952 while working as a secretary.
Launched her TV career on New Year's Eve 1954 with a part on an episode of the Western anthology series Death Valley Days.
Breakout movie role was in the 1959 Western Rio Bravo alongside Dean Martin and John Wayne.
Appeared in the Rat Pack's 1960 comedy-drama Ocean's Eleven.
Had a guest-starring role as brassy Sergeant Suzanne "Pepper" Anderson in a 1974 episode of the popular crime-anthology series Police Story. She garnered so much critical acclaim that the spin-off Police Woman was created for her later that year.