Wanda Sykes

LOS ANGELES - AUG 29:  Wanda Sykes arrives at the 2010 Emmy Awa

Sykes in 2010, photo by kathclick/Bigstock.com

Birth Name: Wanda Yvette Sykes

Place of Birth: Portsmouth, Virginia, U.S.

Date of Birth: March 7, 1964

Ethnicity: African-American [including Cameroonian], smaller amount of English

Wanda Sykes is an American comedian, writer, actress, and voice artist.

Wanda is the daughter of Marion Louise (Peoples) and Harry Ellsworth Sykes, a U.S. Army colonel employed at the Pentagon. She is married to Alex Niedbalski, who is from France. The couple have two children.

Wanda’s paternal grandfather was named Luther Luke Sykes (the son of Joseph Sykes and Maggie). Luther was born in Virginia.

Wanda’s paternal grandmother was Magnolia Wilson (the daughter of Junius Wilson and Fannie Elliott). Magnolia was born in Virginia. Junius was the son of John Wilson and Rosa Francis.

Wanda’s maternal grandfather was named Allie Peoples (the son of Emma). Allie was born in Virginia or North Carolina.

Wanda’s maternal grandmother was named Sarah Jane Jones (the daughter of Annie). Sarah was born in Virginia.

A DNA test taken by the show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2012) stated that Wanda’s genetic ancestry is:

*59% African
*35% European
*6% Asian

The show traced Wanda’s ancestry to her matrilineal ninth great-grandmother, named Elizabeth Banks, who was a white indentured servant. Elizabeth’s daughter, Wanda’s ancestor, was Mary Banks, whose father was a black slave. It is one of the few cases of being able to trace an African-American family’s black genealogy as early as the 1600s. It was also stated that some of Wanda’s DNA matches to present-day Cameroon.

Sources: http://boricuagenes.blogspot.com

Genealogy of Wanda Sykes – https://www.geni.com

6 Responses

  1. fuzzybear44 says:

    Anyone know what kind of Asian ancestry she has? okay 35% euro, so is she mixed or is she still Black? What’s the cut off point?

    • Multiethnicchick says:

      Well if Rashida Jones, who’s 1/3 black is mixed, than this women is mixed. Some people say more than 25%. Others demand being close to the 50%

      • fuzzybear44 says:


        Well until DNA test came along, no one would have known how much European ancestry her father had. They would have still just seen him as a black American. I do agree that both Wanda and Rashida are mixed. However I consider anyone who is not 100% one thing mixed. So I look at the vast majority of black people on this side of the hemisphere as being mixed. Therefore I don’t see them as overly special. I grew up with people looking all different way, so therefore people saying I mixed or whatever is all the same to me, To tell the truth, Wanda is more mixed than Rashida, seeing that Wanda has three ethnic bloodlines, while Rashida has only two.

        Quote(Some people say more than 25%. Others demand being close to the 50%)

        Well by that same logic, Blair underwood here is not a black man:

        26% European plus some Asian ancestry:

        While Tyra Banks here is black , being she only *14% British which as you stated with Michelle Rodriguez is just a smidgen of blood
        *6% Native American =20% overall :

        Yet who would people perceive to be the black person? In my eyes, their both black people, while still being ancestrally mixed

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