Rashida Jones is a Jewish American film and television actress, comic book author and screenwriter. She is best-known for her roles in the comedy television series The Office and Parks and Recreation.
Rashida Leah Jones was born on February 25, 1976, in Los Angeles, California. She is the daughter of media mogul and musician Quincy Jones and actress Peggy Lipton. Her parents divorced when she was 14 years old and she went to live with her mother in Brentwood. Though raised Jewish, Jones, like her mother, began practicing Hinduism in her early teens after the two visited an Ashram in India. Today, however, she practices Judaism and told a reporter, "In this day and age, you can choose how you practice and what is your relationship with God. I feel pretty strongly about my connection, definitely through the Jewish traditions...."
In 1994, Jones garnered attention with an open letter responding to scathing remarks made by Tupac Shakur about her parents' interracial marriage. She later befriended Shakur, who was engaged to her sister Kidada Jones before he was killed.
After high school, Jones left California to attend Harvard University. While at Harvard, she became involved in the performing arts, serving as musical director for the Opportunes a cappella group and belonging to the Hasty Pudding Theatricals and Harvard Radcliffe Dramatic Club. She studied religion and philosophy and graduated in 1997.
In 1997, Jones made her professional acting debut in the mini-series The Last Don. In 2000, she guest starred in Judd Apatow's Freaks and Geeks before landing the role of Louisa Fenn on Boston Public, which earned her an NAACP Image Award nomination in 2002.
In September 2006, Jones joined the cast of The Office and appeared regularly during its third season. She has played nurse Ann Perkins on Parks and Recreation since the show's primetime debut in April 2009.
Jones' film work includes co-starring in 2009's I Love You, Man, alongside Paul Rudd and Jason Segel, and 2010's The Social Network, which was filmed at Harvard and based on Mark Zuckerberg's founding of Facebook. She was also cast in the 2011 Muppet movie starring Jason Segel.