GREW UP IN: the Gold Coast and Old Town NOW LIVES IN: Los Angeles AGE: 29 Claim to fame The budding actress has a recurring guest role as Parker, the fun and supportive best friend everyone wishes they had, on the new CBS comedy “God Friended Me.” FAMILY AFFAIR: Being onstage always came naturally to Ling, as she takes cues from her legendary news-anchor mom, Linda Yu. “When [my mom] is on set, she knows she is talking to a family … real people,” says Ling. “Watching her at ease in front of millions all my life, it wasn’t a scary place for me.” STAGE DOOR: Ling knew acting was her destiny as early as her freshman year at the Latin School of Chicago. Before venturing off to USC’s theater program, Ling acted her way through Chicago, from the high school stage to the Piven Theatre workshop in Evanston, then to Acting Studio Chicago and Joel Hall Dance Studio in Andersonville. BIG BREAK: Her first TV appearance came via the CBS show “Intelligence” and the 2016 movie “The Good Neighbor” with James Caan, now on Netflix. “It was fun to hear his ‘Godfather’ stories on our lunch break,” says Ling. OTHERWORLDLY HOBBIES: Wisdom tooth surgery in middle school led Ling to become a full-on Trekkie, as she filled her recovery days by binge watching “Star Trek.” “My dad has every episode of the original series on disc. It’s colorful, diverse, and kind of hokey, but every episode has something really profound to say,” says Ling, who is still a die-hard fan. TOTAL KNOCKOUT: Her intellect matches her athletic chops — the actress spent five years training in Muay Thai (Thai boxing). “It’s so much fun and really empowering. I recommend it for everyone, especially women,” says Ling. Watch her show off those boxing skills in her new movie “Violence,” hitting the film festival circuit this year.
Photo by Ian Stoker-Long