Paula Poundstone (born December 29, 1959) is an American stand-up comedian. Paula Poundstone started doing stand-up comedy at open-mic nights in Boston in 1979. She characteristically performs dressed in a suit and tie. In 1984, Poundstone was cast in the movie Hyperspace but she did not further pursue an acting career. Instead, she continued as a comedian and began appearing on several talk shows. In 1989, she won the American Comedy Award for "Best Female Stand-Up Comic." In 1990, she wrote and starred in an HBO special called Cats, Cops and Stuff, for which she won a CableACE Award. She worked as a political correspondent for The Tonight Show during the 1992 US Presidential campaign and did the same for The Rosie O'Donnell Show in 1996. In 1993, Poundstone won a second CableACE Award, and began writing the column, "Hey, Paula!" for Mother Jones (1993–1998). Paula featured in her own variety show, The Paula Poundstone Show, on ABC (which lasted only two episodes). She was also a regular panelist for the game shows Hollywood Squares and To Tell the Truth, and NPR's Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! Poundstone has also worked as a voice actress. She voiced Judge Stone on Science Court (also known as Squigglevision), an edutainment cartoon series done in the Squigglevision style that aired on Saturday mornings on ABC Kids in 1997. Staying with the makers of Science Court, Tom Snyder Productions, she was the voice of the mom, Paula Small, in the cartoon series Home Movies for the show's first five episodes, which aired on UPN. Between the show's 1999 UPN cancellation and 2000 revival on Cartoon Network, Paula chose to leave the show. The show's character, Paula Small, was named and loosely modeled around Poundstone. Paula is #88 on Comedy Central's 2004 list of the 100 greatest stand-ups of all time, and #7 on Maxim magazine's list of "Worst Comedians of All Time." She had her own Bravo special as part of their three-part Funny Girls series, along with Caroline Rhea and Joan Rivers, titled "Look What the Cat Dragged In." Around the same time as her Bravo special, Poundstone released her first book, There Is Nothing in this Book That I Meant to Say. Described as an autobiography that is "part memoir, part monologue," the book intertwines historical biographies with anecdotes from her own life. Poundstone currently works as a panelist on the radio news quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! on National Public Radio. She is also a regular guest on A Prairie Home Companion, appearing in Los Angeles shows and at joke shows. Poundstone released her first comedy CD, "I Heart Jokes," in 2009.
Paula Poundstone is an American stand-up comedian, author, actress, interviewer, and commentator. Beginning in the late 1980s, she performed a series of one-hour HBO comedy specials. She provided backstage commentary during the 1992 presidential election on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.