January 09, 2014 04:10:43 GMT
LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones were discovered during the show's recent auditions and will start working on the NBC sketch series on Monday.
After adding Sasheer Zamata to its cast, "Saturday Night Live" has now hired two African-American women as new writers. LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones will join the show's writers on Monday, January 13.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, both Tookes and Jones were among black comediennes who auditioned during showcases recently held in New York and Los Angeles. The auditions were held in response to criticisms due to the lack of black female cast member on the long-running NBC series.
New York Upright Citizens Brigade alum Zamata eventually secured the castmember spot. She will make her debut in the January 18 episode, which will feature Drake as host and musical guest.
Tookes is a former news reporter from Florida who turns actress/comedian. She has performed at iO West. Jones, meanwhile, has guest-starred on "The League" and "Sullivan & Son", and written for and appeared on "Def Comedy Jam" and "1st Amendment Stand Up".