Tara Lyn Charendoff was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, to Jewish Canadian parents Syd (1935–present) and Lucy Charendoff (1936–2004), who ran a convenience/toy/candy store called The Wiz. Strong's acting career began when she volunteered to be a soloist in the school production at age four. Soon, she began acting in the Yiddish Theater; though she did not know Yiddish, she memorized her lines phonetically. During this time, she also performed at the Toronto Jewish Theater, where she acted in A Night of Stars, and was featured in an audiotape for "Lay Down Your Arms" with the Habonim Youth Choir, where she sang the lyrics in both English and Hebrew, a feat she repeated on February 10, 2005, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel during the March of the Living dinner in honor of Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger.
At age thirteen, Strong was accepted into a performing arts school, where she landed her first professional role: the role of Gracie in the Limelight Theater's production of The Music Man. That same year, she booked a guest starring role in Mr. T's T. and T. Afterwards, she landed the title role in Hello Kitty's Furry Tale Theater and starred in the short-lived CBC Television sitcom Mosquito Lake before moving to Los Angeles in the midst of the 1994 Northridge earthquake.
Tara met American actor Craig Strong in early 1999 at a party hosted by Sharon Stone's sister, Marla. Tara and Craig married on May 14, 2000. They have two sons: Sammy James Strong, born February 5, 2002, and Aden Joshua Strong, born August 25, 2004. The family resides in Toluca Lake, California with their two dogs, Abbey and Baci. She and Craig are the founders of VoiceStarz, Inc., an Internet-based company which teaches people how to get into the voice-over business. Craig is the CEO.