Nina Hartley (born Marie Louise Hartman; March 11, 1959) is an American pornographic actress, pornographic film director, sex educator, feminist, and author.
Hartley was born in Berkeley, California to a Lutheran father and a Jewish mother whose family was from Alabama. She grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the youngest of four children, with an older sister and two older brothers. Her parents converted to Buddhism when she was young. After graduating from high school in 1977, she attended San Francisco State University's undergraduate nursing school and graduated magna cum laude in 1985. She is a registered nurse.
In 1982, during her sophomore year of nursing school, she started working as a stripper at Mitchell Brothers O'Farrell Theater. She made her foray into the world of pornographic movies during her junior year, in 1984. Her debut performance was in the film Educating Nina, which was produced and directed by the veteran porn star Juliet Anderson (better known as "Aunt Peg"), and this proved to be a massive hit.