Born in the Great State of New Jersey, my comedy comes in large part from my unique background of being the only son of a Palestinian father and a Sicilian mother. Both my parents have provided me with an enormous amount of material, usually unintentionally.
I was a practicing lawyer for several years until the other lawyers I worked with suggested I perform in the New Jersey Bar Association's funniest lawyer show. I am pretty sure that was their way of telling me to find a new career.
I'm a columnist for The Daily Beast and have also written for CNN.com and The Huffington Past.
I co-produced and co-directed the comedy documentary "The Muslims Are Coming!"
which uses comedy to challenge misconceptions about Muslims and to build bridges with people of other faiths. The film is now available on Netflix, iTunes, Google Play and many other platforms.
I have appeared on various national and international televisions shows, including Comedy Central's "Axis of Evil Comedy" special and "The Watch List," ABC's "The View," Al Jazeera English, MBC, "Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen," CNN's "American Morning" and "Wolf Blitzer's Reports," Comedy Central's "Tough Crowd," Fox News, NY1, PBS' "Newshour with Jim Lehrer," ABC's "20/20," CNBC's "The Big Idea with Donnie Deutsch," Japan's NHK, CNN International's "Inside the Middle East" and "Your World Today," as well as in numerous sketches on NBC's "Saturday Night Live."
I have written numerous jokes that have appeared on "Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update" segment and CBS's "The Late, Late Show," and frequently write for The Huffington Post and CNN.com.
I have also been featured in numerous newspapers and publications including Time magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Vanity Fair (Italy edition), Associated Press, USA Today, AFP, The UK's Guardian, NY Daily News, The NJ Star Ledger and numerous college publications.
I co-produced an Internet show along with Max Brooks for Comedy Central entitled "The Watch List" featuring all Middle-Eastern American performers.
I also perform a stand up show with Jewish comic Scott Blakeman entitled "Stand up for Peace," (www.standupforpeace.com
) which uses comedy to bring people together in the hope of fostering peace in the Middle East.
I am the co-founder of the annual NY Arab-American Comedy Festival (www.arabcomedy.org
) which will hold its 11th annual Festival in Fall 2014. I am also the Executive Producer of the Amman Stand Up Comedy Festival
which took place in December 2008 - this was the first stand up comedy festival ever in Middle East history. The 3rd annual Festival was held in December 2010.
I perform comedy at colleges across the US and across the Middle East. Please follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/deanofcomedy