Susan Walters was born in Atlanta, Georgia and attended Chamblee High School. She became Miss Teen All American in 1981, representing Georgia. Walters started her television career playing Lorna Forbes Perelli on the soap opera Loving from the pilot on June 1983 to late 1986.
Her first role after Loving was in the 1987 film Russkies. Aaron Spelling used Walters in several of his productions: in Hotel during its last season (as Ryan Thomas) 1987-1988; in the 1988 television miniseries Elvis and Me as Priscilla Presley; in Nightingales (as Bridget Loring) 1988-1989; in Melrose Place (as Tiffany Hart). Other credits include a starring role in 1990 in Dear John, the short-lived prime time series Point Pleasant, and a guest role on CSI: Miami. In 1993 she played Lee Gilrich in an episode of Murder, She Wrote. Walters gained attention for her appearances as "Mulva" (real name Dolores) on the NBC sitcom Seinfeld, which she played in 1993 and again from 1996 to 1997. Walters starred as Anne Osborne in the television version of The Big Easy on the USA Network in 1996. In 1999, she appeared in the Disney Channel movie Horse Sense, as well as its 2001 sequel, Jumping Ship.
In 2000, she also portrayed the lead character opposite her husband Linden Ashby on the TV-series The War Next Door. From 2001 through 2004, Walters returned to daytime soap opera when she took on the role of Diane Jenkins on The Young and the Restless. In 2010, Walters reprised the role for two episodes. In 2009, Walters starred in the episode "Pilot" of the first season of Drop Dead Diva along side her husband, Linden Ashby, as a couple getting divorced and suing for what she feels she is worth. After portraying Principal Rimkus on One Tree Hill in 2009, Walters recurred in the role of Carol Lockwood on The Vampire Diaries from 2009 through 2012. In 2014, Walters made guest star or recurring appearances on three different series: she played Maia in the CW series Star-Crossed, Lindsay in the CBS series Reckless, and currently stars as Natalie Martin on the MTV series Teen Wolf, appearing in 18 episodes to date. In 2015, Walters starred in season 2 episode 7 of How to Get Away with Murder.