Denise is Phil Dunphy's ex-girlfriend and also one of his old friends from high school.

They kept in touch on Facebook until 2010 when Claire thought her messages were more than friendly but Phil didn't. Although Claire eventually was convinced her intentions was to catch up, Phil sees how she acts like she just wants to catch up, but really she wants to sleep with him after inviting her to his home, thus rebelling her offers for intimacy. She has since left with Phil and the Dunphy family not affilating with her again.