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.
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.
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 allegedly 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 asked, at an audition, to explain the lawsuit. The suit was later tossed out. Per Sunda's live interview on NBC's Today, 5/9/2010, Sunda was initially sued by her sister-in-law who then asked her mother, Sunda's mother-in-law, to join the lawsuit.
- Manuel-Logan, Ruth (2009-08-27). "Judge Throws Out Mother-in-Law's Suit Against Comedienne". Examiner.com. Retrieved 2010-09-23.