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Wednesday, January 8th, 2014
SNL

'SNL' Adds Two Black Female Writers, LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones

Earlier this week, Saturday Night Live added Sasheer Zamata to its cast, the show's first black female cast member in over five years, and now, they've hired two black female writers. LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones, who both auditioned during to be SNL cast members last month, have been added to the writing staff, THR reports. Their first show will be the next new episode on January 18th, with host and musical guest Drake, during which Zamata will also make her debut.

Lorne Michaels's long-running sketch series faced scrutiny in the fall for the lack of diversity amongst its new cast, prompting the show to hold two showcase auditions of entirely non-white female performers vying for a new featured player spot. Tookes is a Florida reporter-turned-comedian and Jones is a standup/actress who has appeared on shows like The League and Sullivan & Son and starred in her own Showtime special Problem Child.