Jon Hamm is celebrating his 47th today. He grew up in the St. Louis area and attended John Burroughs School, where his prom date was actress Sarah Clarke. After he graduated from the University of Missouri, he taught drama at John Burroughs for a few years; one of his students was Ellie Kemper. In the mid-1990s, he moved to Los Angeles, where he became the first-ever aspiring actor to wait tables while trying to establish himself.
His major part came when he was cast in the role of Burt Ridley on seasons 2 and 3 of Providence in 2000-01. He worked regularly in television for the next several years, and also made appearances in features like Kissing Jessica Stein and We Were Soldiers. Then he got his big break in 2007, when he was cast in the lead role of Don Draper on AMC’s Mad Men. The role brought him eight consecutive nominations for the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama—he won for the show’s final season—as well as a pair of Golden Globes.