Jo Koy Parents: A Look at Their Lives and Influence

Jo Koy, born Joseph Glenn Herbert on June 2, 1971, is a well-known and highly-regarded American stand-up comedian. Over the years, he has built a solid reputation for his comedic talents, with his humor often drawing from his experiences growing up in a multicultural household. His unique comedy style can be, in part, attributed to the influence and support of his parents.

Koy’s father, John C. Herbert, is a white American who served in the United States Air Force. He was stationed in the Philippines when he married Jo Koy’s Filipina mother, Josie Harrison. Koy’s family initially lived in Spanaway, Washington, then moved to Tacoma, Washington, and finally settled in Las Vegas, Nevada, following his high school graduation.

Despite Jo Koy parents’ eventual divorce and his father leaving the family when Koy was just 10 years old, he and his siblings were brought up by their determined and strong-willed mother. Jo Koy has often credited his mother as a major source of inspiration for his comedy, as well as acknowledging her unwavering support throughout his career.

Early Life and Family

Jo Koy was born Joseph Glenn Herbert on June 2, 1971, in the Philippines to parents Josie Harrison and John C. Herbert. His father, a white American, served in the United States Air Force and was stationed in the Philippines when he met and married Jo’s mother, Josie, who is Filipina. She had been working as a manager for a Filipino rock band at the time.

The family moved from Spanaway, Washington, to Tacoma, Washington, and then to Las Vegas soon after Jo finished high school in Tacoma. Jo Koy parents divorced when he was 10 years old. After the divorce, Jo, his sisters, and his brother were raised primarily by their mother, Josie.

Jo Koy’s childhood experiences with his family, particularly his mother, have become a significant source of material for his stand-up comedy routines. While his father has remained largely absent from his comedy, Jo Koy has found plenty of humorous and relatable anecdotes to share about his mother, siblings, and growing up in a Filipino-American household.

Moving between Washington and Las Vegas during his formative years, Jo Koy’s upbringing exposed him to a variety of cultural influences. The family’s Filipino heritage, combined with the diverse communities found in the United States, served as a rich foundation for Jo’s comedy, which continues to resonate with fans from all backgrounds.


Jo Koy, born Joseph Glenn Herbert, began to nurture his talent for making people laugh during his school days. He attended Spanaway Lake High School in Spanaway, Washington. This is where he first stepped into the entertaining world by participating in school talent shows, showcasing his comedic skills and witty humor.

After completing his high school studies at Spanaway Lake, Jo Koy moved to Foss High School in Tacoma, Washington. While studying at Foss High School, he continued to develop his craft, benefiting from the diverse experiences and interactions with his fellow students.

Following his high school graduation, Jo Koy decided to further his education by enrolling at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas. The university provided him with a platform to enhance his skills and build his network in the entertainment industry. Studying at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, not only expanded Jo Koy’s academic knowledge but also played a significant role in sculpting his successful career as a stand-up comedian and actor.

In summary, Jo Koy’s educational journey spanned across different institutions, including Spanaway Lake High School, Foss High School, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. These schools collectively contributed to the development of his comedic talents and helped pave the way for his thriving career in the entertainment industry.

Career and Success

Jo Koy, born in Tacoma, Washington, began his career in stand-up comedy after his family moved to Las Vegas. His unique humor and charismatic stage presence quickly attracted attention and opened opportunities for him in the entertainment industry.

As a stand-up comedian, Jo Koy had the opportunity to perform at renowned venues such as The Montreal Comedy Festival, where he showcased his talent on a global stage. He was eventually featured on notable television shows including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Comedy Central’s Don’t Make Him Angry.

In 2017, Jo Koy released his first Netflix special, Live From Seattle, which helped solidify his status as a successful comedian. Due to the positive reception of his material and performances, he was invited back to Netflix to produce another special, Comin’ In Hot, which premiered in 2019. Jo Koy’s success on Netflix garnered him recognition and a larger fan base.

Throughout his career, Jo Koy has made appearances on various radio and television shows, such as The Adam Carolla Show, VH1’s Big Morning Buzz Live, and truTV’s World’s Dumbest. These appearances have not only increased his visibility but also showcased his versatility as an entertainer.

In 2021, Jo Koy continued his success with the release of another Netflix special, Jo Koy: In His Elements, a celebration of his Filipino heritage through comedy, music, and dance. This special not only further established Jo Koy as a dominant force in the world of comedy but also highlighted his pride in his roots and dedication to promoting diversity in entertainment.

Las Vegas remains an important part of Jo Koy’s career, as it was the city where he honed his craft and gained invaluable experience in the world of comedy. His journey from performing in small clubs to selling out arenas illustrates his remarkable growth and success as a stand-up comedian.

Personal Life

Jo Koy, born Joseph Glenn Herbert, has an interesting family background. His parents are Josie Harrison (mother) and John C. Herbert (father). Josie is of Filipino descent, whereas John is a Caucasian American who served in the United States Air Force. They met while John was stationed in the Philippines, fell in love, and eventually got married.

The family moved to the United States and lived in various locations, including Spanaway and Tacoma, Washington. Jo Koy’s upbringing was shaped by this diverse cultural environment, which later influenced his stand-up comedy.

In his personal life, Jo Koy was once married to Angie King. However, the couple went through a divorce, and Jo Koy is currently single. They have a son together named Joseph Herbert Jr. Jo Koy’s relationships with his family, particularly his mother and son, frequently feature as the inspiration for his comedy materials.

When it comes to siblings, Jo Koy grew up with his elder siblings Robert Herbert and Rowena Hazel Cook, as well as his adopted sister, Gemma Herbert Simmons.

As a successful comedian, Jo Koy has accumulated an impressive net worth, estimated at $5 million. His achievements in the entertainment industry have not only brought financial rewards but also the support of millions of fans worldwide.

Influence and Style

Jo Koy’s comedic style is heavily influenced by his mixed heritage as a Filipino-American. Born to a white American father, John C. Herbert, who served in the United States Air Force, and a Filipina mother, Josie Harrison, Jo Koy’s upbringing exposed him to multiple cultures and perspectives.

From a young age, Jo Koy found humor in his unique family dynamics and multicultural upbringing. His mother Josie Harrison has not only served as a source of inspiration for his material but is often directly featured in his jokes, with him fondly telling stories about her personality and Filipino customs.

In his comedy routines, Jo Koy effortlessly weaves his Filipino-American background into humorous anecdotes, highlighting the commonalities and differences between Filipinos and other cultures. For example, he explores the similarities between Filipinos and Mexicans, finding common ground between the two communities.

His comedy also touches on serious topics, such as mental health. Drawing from his own experiences, Jo Koy openly discusses his mother’s battle with schizophrenia, using humor to create awareness and reduce stigma surrounding the mental health condition.

Through his comedy, Jo Koy not only appeals to diverse audiences but also celebrates his own multicultural background, expertly blending wit and relatability to resonate with fans. In doing so, he simultaneously honors his parents’ influences and sharing the Filipino-American experience with a wider audience.

Media and Social Presence

Jo Koy, born Joseph Glenn Herbert, is an accomplished stand-up comedian and actor with a considerable presence in various media channels. He has appeared on numerous TV shows, most notably as a frequent panelist on E!’s late-night show, Chelsea Lately, hosted by Chelsea Handler. In addition to his work with Chelsea Handler, Jo Koy has taken on acting roles in series like Family Tools.

In 2017, Jo Koy starred in a Netflix comedy special, “Jo Koy: Live from Seattle.” The comedian’s engaging social media presence includes his Instagram account, where he regularly shares moments from his life, including his relationships, career highlights, and glimpses of his life in Los Angeles.

Throughout his career, Jo Koy has been open about his personal life and his relationships. He was previously married and has a son, Joseph Jr., with his ex-wife. Jo Koy often discusses his experiences as a single parent in his comedy routines, which has resonated with many fans. His dedication to his family is evident, with his parents—Josie Harrison and John C. Herbert—playing a significant role in shaping his entertainment career.

Jo Koy has appeared on various TV networks besides E!, such as BET, where he has showcased his comedic skills and further established himself as a recognized figure in the entertainment industry. Despite his divorce, he maintains a good rapport with his ex-wife and continues to co-parent their son amicably.

Robert Herbert, Jo Koy’s brother, also seems to have a presence in the media. Though not in the spotlight as much as Jo, he maintains a connection to the entertainment industry through social media and familial ties.

In summary, Jo Koy’s media and social presence thrives on multiple platforms, including TV shows, Netflix specials, and social media. His relatable experiences and charisma have helped him attract a loyal fanbase that appreciates his unique blend of comedy, family life, and engaging social media content.

Additional Facts

Jo Koy, born and raised in an American-Filipino family, often shares stories about his parents and upbringing in his comedy acts. His father, John C. Herbert, was part of the United States Air Force stationed in the Philippines where he met Jo Koy’s mother, Josie Harrison. The family initially resided in Spanaway, Washington before moving to Tacoma and eventually Las Vegas.

Jo Koy’s mixed nationality gave him the perfect opportunity to mix his Filipino heritage with his American upbringing, often bringing humor to the differences found in both cultures. His unique perspective also allows him to connect with diverse audiences around the world. During his comedy acts, Jo Koy not only jokes about his family life but also sometimes shares fond memories of his mother, who was a dedicated attendee at a church in Las Vegas, even on major events like Easter Sunday.

Apart from his successful career in stand-up comedy, Jo Koy has explored other avenues in the entertainment industry. For instance, he had a radio talk show called The Michael Yo and Jo Koy Show. He also made appearances on TruTV and performed live at notable venues such as the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino.

In regards to his siblings, Jo Koy has a brother, Robert Herbert, and two sisters, Rowena Cook and Gemma Herbert. It is notable that Gemma is part of a Filipino rock band and shares her brother’s love for music and the arts. Jo Koy’s comedy special, “In His Elements,” showcased Filipino culture and talents, featuring Gemma and several other Filipino artists performing in their native Tagalog language.

In his personal life, Jo Koy and his former partner, Angie King, are proud parents of their son, Joseph Herbert Jr. Though the couple has parted ways, they continue to co-parent and support their son in pursuing his passions.

Jo Koy doesn’t shy away from expressing his love and gratitude for his family and their support in his career. Besides his family life, he remains active in supporting Filipino talent and sharing his life experiences through the art of comedy.



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