Designated Survivor Wiki


Designated Survivor is an ABC drama series starring Kiefer Sutherland. It was the first series order for ABC in the 2016–17 television season. The show and the first season premiered on September 21, 2016. It was renewed for a second season on May 11, 2017, which premiered on September 27, 2017.[1][2] On May 11, 2018 ABC announced that it would be cancelling production of the show.[3][4] Later, on September 5, 2018, Netflix picked up the show and renewed it for a third season, with Neal Baer as it's fifth showrunner.[5]



  • Kiefer Sutherland as President Thomas Adam "Tom" Kirkman, the President of the United States and the former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development who is sworn in following an unprecedented attack.[6]
  • Natascha McElhone as First Lady Alex Kirkman, Tom's devoted wife and an attorney employed at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission who finds herself thrust into a role she is not prepared for.[7]
  • Adan Canto as Former White House Chief of Staff and later National Security Aaron Shore, the former White House Deputy Chief of Staff and current Chief of Staff who advises Tom.[8]
  • Italia Ricci as Special Advisor and later Chief of Staff Emily Rhodes, Tom's Chief of Staff at HUD who becomes his Special Advisor following his ascension to the Presidency.[7]
  • LaMonica Garrett as Mike Ritter, Tom's personal Secret Service agent who is tasked with ensuring the Kirkman family's safety in the wake of the attack.[9]
  • Tanner Buchanan as Leo Kirkman, Tom and Alex's rebellious teenage son whose self-absorbed nature is matched only by his need to support his younger sister.[10]
  • Kal Penn as White House Press Secretary Seth Wright, a former speechwriter who initially harbors strong doubts about Tom's abilities to lead the country but quickly becomes one of his closest advisors.[7]
  • Maggie Q as Hannah Wells, an FBI agent assigned to investigate the attack who suspects that the perpetrators are not yet finished.[7]
  • Paulo Costanzo as Lyor Boone, the White House Political Director
  • Ben Lawson as Damian Rennett, a British agent who helped Hannah Wells.
  • Zoe McLellen as Kendra Daynes, the White House Counsler


  • Mckenna Grace as Penny Kirkman, Tom and Alex's daughter and Leo's younger sister.[10]
  • Malik Yoba as Jason Atwood, the Deputy Director of the FBI who spars with Hannah as she conducts her investigation into the attack.[11]
  • Reed Diamond as John Forstell, the Director of the FBI who led the Icarus investigation.
  • Kevin McNally as General Harris Cochrane, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who refuses to believe Tom is capable of running the country and takes matters into his own hands only to be fired for disregarding orders.[12]
  • Virginia Madsen as Kimble Hookstraten, a Republican Congresswoman and the designated survivor for the GOP who supports Kirkman's authority while harboring her own agenda.[13] She is later elected Speaker of the House by the new Congress.[14]
    • Ashley Zukerman as Peter MacLeish, a decorated Afghan War veteran and popular third-term Democratic Congressman from Oregon who becomes a national hero following the attack.[15] He is later confirmed by Congress as Vice President only to be fatally shot by his wife before he can reveal information about his involvement in the Capitol bombing.[16]
  • Mykelti Williamson as Admiral Chernow, a career military man and the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who quickly becomes one of Tom's most trusted advisors.[17]
  • Michael Gaston as James Royce, the Governor of Michigan who defies the Kirkman administration and attempts to establish his own supreme authority only to be placed under arrest for treason.[18]
  • Mariana Klaveno as an unnamed clandestine operator in league with the people behind the Capitol attack.
  • Jake Epstein as Chuck Russink, an FBI technician who aids Hannah in her investigation.
  • Lara Jean Chorostecki as Beth MacLeish, Peter MacLeish's wife who is also involved with the conspiracy behind the Capitol bombing.