Meet Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland: Truth of Richard Gilliland’s Adopted Daughter

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  • Post last modified:September 9, 2022
Meet Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland: Truth of Richard Gilliland’s Adopted Daughter
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Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland is a famous celebrity child who is famous for being the adopted daughter of American actors Richard Gilliland, and Jean Smart. Though he was born a girl, he later changed his gender and currently identifies himself as Forrest Gilliland.

Both of his parents are well-known figures in Hollywood. His father Richard was popular for his portrayal of the character JD Shackleford in the American sitcom Designing Women (19861992). As of 2022, he is no longer in the world as he passed away on March 18, 2021, at the age of 71.

Being the Asian child of famous American parents, Bonnie was also the most googled celebrity child. Well, how was his relationship with his parents as a adopted kid? In this article, we will explore every aspect of Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland along with his age, family life, transgender identity, and many more. Let’s get into it.

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland Is Originally From China

As we mentioned above, Bonnie is the adopted child of his parents. His now parents Jean Smart and Richard Gilliland traveled to China to bring him home. The couple along with all their biological son went to East Asia to add up a little girl in their family in the month of May 2009.

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland is an adopted daughter of Jean Smart and Richard Gilliland
Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland in her early age

At a time, Bonnie was a 10-months old baby girl. Even though his exact birth date is out of media reach, Bonnie’s adoption information suggests his birth date be the month of July 2008. So, the year 2022 marks Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland’s 14th birthday. The famous celeb kid grew up in California, of course at the residence of his famous parents.

Besides, Bonnie is of Asian Ethnical background and is American by nationality.

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland Is Now Forrest Gilliland: She Came Out As Transgender

Jeans and Richard’s adopted daughter has turned into a boy at present. For the first time, Bonnie’s mother, Smart introduced her as a son Forrest at the 2021 Emmy Awards. Bonnie now has officially changed his name to Forrest Gilliland.

In 2021, Jean attended the Emmys alongside her daughter turned son, Forrest. Both the mother-son duo proudly walked the red carpet together. The actress’s mother thanked her both sons during the speech and said  “my two wonderful and unselfish children … who are both very courageous in their own right.”

Though the family has not opened up about Bonnie’s journey to being transgender, however, Bonnie-now- Forrest keep appearing in the award shows alongside his mother.

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland’s Parent’s Were Together Forever

His father and mother Jean and Richard were in a marital relationship for 34 years and their togetherness ended following the death of  Richard Gilliland in March 2021.

The couple for the first time met on the set of the American Sitcom Designing Women. As per Jean, when she first saw her now late husband Richard, he was kissing someone else.

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland's parents are well known face in the Hollywood
Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland parents Jean Smart and Richard Gilliland

Right after her first glance, she developed a huge crush on the actor and asked a fellow cast member named Delta about him to know whether Richard is single or not. She said,

“Naturally, Delta walked up to him and blurted, ‘Jean wants to know if you’re married.'”

Eventually, after a year in June 1987, the couple shared vows. Since then, the lovely couple were together until his death.

Bonnie’s Parents Inseparable Bond: Jean Gave A Tribute To Her Late Husband 

Their bonding was so admirable and strong that even after her husband’s death, Jean Smart paid tribute to her late husband. When she received Emmy for Best Actress in 2021, she remembered her late partner and his contributions to making her career. She stated,

I have to acknowledge my late husband who passed away six months yesterday,’ the Seattle-born actress said in her acceptance speech. ‘I would not be here without him, and without his kind of putting his career on the back burner so I could take advantage of all the wonderful opportunities that I have had.’

Bonnie Gilliland Is Growing Up With His Mother, Jean Smart

Bonnie (aka Forrest) lost his beloved father in March 2021 due to a brief illness. After that, Jean is single-handedly raising the teenage boy. Regarding being a single parent, she shared her trouble with People. She said,

“Being a single mother is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. And having a young child, it’s been unimaginable,”

Besides some difficulties, Jean is really proud of her children and is very close to both Bonnie and his elder brother Connor. She keeps appearing in different Award show with her teenage son by her side. At the 2021 award show, while receiving an honor, she shout out to her children and stated, “To my two children, Forest and Connor, you are my life”. 

Bonnie Is Proud Of His Mom

At an Emmy Award Ceremony in 2021, Bonnie aka Forrest, on the red carpet talked with Karamo Brown regarding his mom’s achievements. He said, he is very proud of her mom and added, ”

she deserved all the accolades because “she worked really hard.”

Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland’s Sibling

Forrest has a brother named Connor Douglas Gilliland, the only biological child of her parents. Connor was born on October 25, 1989, in Los Angeles, California which marks him 32 years old as of 2022.

Transgender Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland with his mother and brother
Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland with his brother and mother

Talking about their age differences, both the siblings have 18 years of an age gap. Bonnie was added to the family when his big brother Connor had just turned 20.

What Is Bonnie Kathleen Gilliland Doing In 2022?

The 14 years old boy is obviously supposed to be in the school for academic excellence. So, for sure, an actress’ son is studying in the school though his educational details is out of reach. Bonnie is not on any social networking sites and neither has his famous mother shared him on her social media handles.

Despite appearing in more than a couple of award ceremonies, his personal life is completely personal.

What Is Bonnie’s Net Worth?

As we said earlier, Bonnie is just a 14 years kid. So, much more time is left for him to start his career. Hence, his net worth is yet to be estimated. On the other hand, his famous mom, Jean Smart has a net worth of $10 million while his father Richard had a fortune of  $4 million.

Anuja Uprety

Anuja Uprety is a professional writer at She is a fashion enthusiast and followers Hollywood trends pretty closely. As an expert in the field for years, her research skills and approach to presenting articles are incredible. Contact her at: