Besides the fact that she’s a strong, confident woman who can overcome anything from public scrutiny to racism by the hands of social media trolls — how much do we really know about Leslie Jones? Here are seven things you need to know about the star.
1. This is her first time hosting the big show, but Jones actually wrote for Chris Rock for the 2014 BET Awards. She contributed to skits and the opening monologue.
2. Standing at 6’0″, Leslie was a basketball star in high school, earning her a scholarship to play at Chapman University before she eventually transferred to Colorado State University.
3. After leaving college to pursue a career in comedy, she opened up for Jamie Foxx at the Comedy Store in West Hollywood and was booed by the audience. Jones was so discouraged by the incident that she stopped performing for three years. But she and Jamie remained friends, he even shouted her out for her gorgeous Elle Magazine cover last year.
4. Jones started as a writer on Saturday Night Live. After the outrage over the lack of Black women comedians on the show, Jones rightfully became a series regular.
5. Leslie once revealed in an emotional interview that Whoopi Goldberg is the reason she started doing comedy. She eventually got to thank her on The View, which was a dream come true for Leslie.
6. She’s also an active member of the Bey-hive. Looking at her fanning out in the pic above! Gotta love, Leslie!
Catch Leslie Jones hosting the BET Awards this Sunday at 8 p.m. EST.