Lauren Michelle Hill (born June 27, 1979) is an American model and actress. She first appeared on the cover of Playboy on the October (Girls of Conference USA) 2000 issue. She was chosen as Playboy Playmate of the Month in February 2001 and won the Playboy playmates edition of the game show Fear Factor. Hill then returned for Fear Factor 's Tournament of Champions for season 2, but was eliminated in the second round. She was a cheerleader at the University of South Carolina while studying journalism. While modeling and acting, she is known as Lauren James. She was first spotted by a Playboy scout at a swimsuit competition in St. Croix.