Former Gwinnettian on television shows, films

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Lennon Parham lives in Los Angeles, writes television scripts and acts on shows when the opportunity arises, but this 1994 Parkview High School graduate never forgets how she got where she is today.

"Growing up in Lilburn, I didn't have a realistic picture of the industry," she said. "It's been a step-by-step, but my goal was being on 'Saturday Night Live.'"

She took classes at ArtStation in Stone Mountain, performed in the one act production plays at Gwinnett Performing Arts Center in Duluth and attended summer camps at Brookwood High or "anywhere with summer theater programs," Parham said.

"I didn't know which way it was going to go," she said. "I thought I was going to be a stage actress. And then I thought maybe it would take me to film, but I knew I wanted to do acting."

She knew she wanted to act ever since she performed in her kindergarten play at Camp Creek Elementary School. She later started acting in high school, which solidified her career path.

"Something clicked in my head -- this was exactly what I was supposed to be doing," Parham said.

Once she graduated, the Gwinnett native moved to Indiana to attend University of Evansville for a degree in theater. From there, she was part of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York City, and wrote and performed her one-woman character show, "She Tried to Be Normal," which ran in New York and Los Angeles.

Parham's face may look familiar because she's played roles in "Accidentally on Purpose," "How I Met Your Mother," "Funny or Die Presents...," "Confessions of a Shopaholic," "Splinterheads" and "Hysterical Psycho."

Her latest endeavor is her own show "Best Friends Forever," which she writes, produces and stars in with her real life buddy, Jessica St. Clair. The two know each other from the Upright Citizen Brigade.

"She and I were looking to create something with comedy," Parham said. "We were friends first. We sat down to brainstorm ideas and we were laughing on the floor after only a few minutes."

The two created a show that revolves around two friends, aptly named Lennon and Jessica, and one is dealing with her newly single life.

The show lasted for four episodes before it was pulled from the air, but the final two episodes air tonight at 8 p.m. on NBC.

"It was a labor of love, but it was a lot of hard work," Parham said about the show. "Jessica and I are starting to throw some other ideas around right now -- we need to live a little life first."