|Lena Waithe Quick Info|
|Height||5 ft 9 in|
|Date of Birth||May 17, 1984|
|Eye Color||Dark Brown|
Lena Waithe is an American writer, actress, and producer who made headlines as the 1st African-American woman to receive an Emmy Award for “Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series” in 2017. The winning episode ‘Thanksgiving’ in season 2 of Master of None was loosely influenced by her personal coming out story. Since then, she has been using her influence to create more work opportunities for talented people of color and queer artists in the industry. She is active on social media with more than 600k followers on Instagram and more than 200k followers on Twitter.
Lena Diane Waithe
Lena D. Waithe, Katraukus
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Lena studied at Turner-Drew Elementary Language Academy and Chute Middle School in Illinois. She went on to attend Evanston Township High School.
She graduated from Columbia College Chicago in 2006 with a degree in Cinema and Television Arts.
Writer, Producer, Actress
- Father – He passed away when Lena was a teenager.
- Mother – Ethel Laverne
- Siblings – She has an older sister.
Lena is represented by William Morris Endeavor Entertainment located in California.
5 ft 9 in or 175 cm
68 kg or 150 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Lena has dated –
- Alana Mayo (2015-2020) – Lena started dating content executive Alana Mayo in 2015. Their first encounter was a business meeting and their romance blossomed slowly as Alana hadn’t dated a woman before. The much-in-love couple got engaged in Tokyo on Thanksgiving Day in 2017. As an engagement gift, Alana gave her a pair of exclusive Etonic, Akeem the Dream sneakers, knowing Lena’s penchant for sneakers. The couple got married in 2019 in San Francisco. On January 23, 2020, it was announced that they had separated after almost 2 months of marriage.
- Cynthia Erivo – Lena is in a relationship with actress and singer Cynthia Erivo.
Race / Ethnicity
She has African-American ancestry.
Lena has done endorsement work for the following brands –
- Nike 2018
- DirecTV (2018) (Voiceover)
- AT&T (2018) (Voiceover)
- Apple (2018)
- Time Magazine (2018)
- Netflix (2018)
- Sir Vincent Designs
Best Known For
Being the 1st woman of African-American origin to receive a Primetime Emmy Award for “Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series” for the Netflix show Master of None in 2017
Lena made her theatrical film debut in Steven Spielberg‘s sci-fi movie Ready Player One as Aech /Helen in 2018.
First TV Show
She made her first TV show appearance in 2013 as a guest on the news show TakePart Live.
Lena Waithe Favorite Things
- TV Show – The Comeback (HBO)
- Angela Bassett Line From The Miniseries ‘The Jacksons: An American Dream’ – I don’t want you. I don’t want you. I don’t want you no mo.
Source – National Public Radio
Lena Waithe Facts
- She was raised by her single mother and maternal grandmother in Chicago. Her father divorced her mother when she was 3 years old and passed away when she was 14 years old.
- As a child, she grew up watching a lot of television and movies. From the age of 7, her ambition was to be a television writer and found strong support from her family.
- Her Emmy Award-winning episode ‘Thanksgiving’ on Master of None drew inspiration from her personal life. In the episode, her character Denise comes out to her mother as gay and she used her personal experience to write the episode authentically.
- She was named as one of the ’10 Comedians to Watch’ by Variety magazine in 2014.
- The character of Denise on Master of None was initially written as a white, straight woman with the possibility of being the love interest for the main character. However, after meeting Lena, the role was rewritten to make it more like her.
- Lena is the creative head behind the drama series The Chi which appears on Showtime. The show is a coming-of-age story of growing up as an African-American in the South Side of Chicago, her hometown.
- On November 8, 2017, she was declared as ‘Out100: Artist of the Year’ by Out Magazine.
- Lena bid farewell to her signature dreadlocks in August 2018. She later revealed that she felt free, happy, and joyful as a result of it.
- Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
Featured Image by Lena Waithe / Instagram