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Sunda Croonquist is an American comedian.
Sunda Croonquist was born in Paterson, New Jersey to an African-American mother and Swedish father. Inspired by her father's career as a musician and having a stage/pageant mom, Croonquist wanted to be an entertainer at a very young age.
She was runner up in the Miss America Pageant's preliminary representing the state of New Jersey. Years later she again represented New Jersey but this time as "New Jersey's Funniest Female."
With a BA in Criminal Justice, Croonquist also worked as a probation and parole review officer in Newark, New Jersey. She then worked as a detective while taking acting classes and eventually landed roles in local plays and films.
At a chance encounter in New York City, Croonquist was joking around at a party when she met Jackie Mason, who told her to seriously consider doing stand up comedy and with her husband's encouragement, took a comedy class and had her first paid gig within weeks.
Her first performance was at a club called "Don't Tell Mama". "I was scared but loved the thrill of being in front of an audience talking about my life"-Sunda.
Croonquist has produced her own comedy shows including: "Femmes Fatales" one of the longest running female comedy showcases for NY's Toyota Comedy Festival for eight years. She is also the Chairperson for the Annual "Laugh Off", an event that brings awareness to Gilda's Club in Northern New Jersey. This is a cancer support group that was formed by comedian Gilda Radner.
Croonquist gained attention in the media in August, 2009 when her mother-in-law, Ruth Zafrin, filed a lawsuit against her in U.S. District Court for alledgedly spreading false, defamatory and racist lies about Zafrin's family in her stand-up act. Croonquist said she didn't even know she was being taken to court until she was told, at an audition, to explain the lawsuit.