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Today in History, February 7: 1947: This date marks the official founding of the Jewish Agency, a world-wide organization centered in Israel. It is dedicated to the establishment of Israel as the Jewish Homeland, and to the encouragement and fulfillment of Jewish Aliyah from around the world.
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Sunda Croonquist

10-06-10

About Sunda Croonquist

Comedian Sunda Croonquist was born in Paterson, New Jersey to an African-American mother and Swedish father. Inspired by her fathers career as a musician and having a stage/pageant mom always having her involved in the arts, Sunda knew she wanted to be an entertainer at a very young age. My father was always proud of writing his own patter, patter is when a musician talks to the crowd between songs, she explains. And I was just like okay thats it! Thats what I want to do. I want to talk to people on stage.

Not only was she blessed with the gift of gab but she also turned her fair share of heads in beauty pageants. This former beauty queen was runner up in the Miss America Pageants preliminary representing the state of New Jersey. Years later she again represented New Jersey but this time as New Jerseys Funniest Female.

With a BA in Criminal Justice, Sunda also worked as a probation and parole review officer in Newark, NJ. She then got an offer from Detective Vincent Parco (Parco PI, Court TV) to work as a detective doing overt and covert surveillance which granted her time to still pursue her career where she took acting classes and eventually landed roles in local plays and films.

Sunda CroonquistAt a chance encounter in New York City, Sunda was joking around at a party when she met Jackie Mason who told her to seriously consider doing stand up comedy and with her husbands encouragement, took a comedy class and had her first paid gig within weeks.

Her first performance was at a club called Dont Tell Mama. I was scared but loved the thrill of being in front of an audience talking about my life. And there is a lot to laugh at because when youre a Swedish and Black Jew, growing up looking like a Puerto Rican and your mother gives you a Hindu name and sends you to an Irish Catholic School.youre bound to be funny. But of course the funny doesnt stop there..being married to an attorney with an overbearing Jewish mother in law and two precocious daughters under six makes this comedian different from all others. Shes the ultimate Diverse Diversion .she relates to being African-American. She relates to being a Jewish Princess.she has all these experiences that come together to make her the story of America.

Sunda has produced her own comedy shows including: Femmes Fatales one of the longest running female comedy showcases for NYs Toyota Comedy Festival for eight years. She is also the Chairperson for the Annual Laugh Off, an event that brings awareness to Gildas Club in Northern New Jersey. This is a cancer support group that was formed by the late comedian Gilda Radner.

Sunda also cooks big Shabbos dinners every week. I like to make Kosher Soul Food like collard greens and pastrami. Sunda is currently in the process of writing a recipe book for racially mixed couples. A self confessed shoe fanatic even for her two daughters, Sunda is full of surprises and cant wait to tell you about it!

Soul Food, February 7

You must not let anyone define your limits because of where you come from. Your only limit is your soul. Ratatouille