Shayla Racquel is the quintessential creative, born and raised in the South but currently living in the city. She believes she gained her creative and entrepreneurial spirit from her grandparents Joseph & Evelyn Thompson, both owning thriving Black businesses in Columbia, South Carolina. Diagnosed with Sickle Cell Disease at birth and having a stroke at the young age of 12, her childhood battle with the disease is what brought her closer to the art of storytelling and the love of filmmaking.
Shayla Racquel is the creator of the award-winning webseries “Quarter Century,” a narrative series following a group of post-grads who are trying to figure out what it means to be “grown.” The series has two seasons under its belt – the first set in the eclectic city of Washington, DC and the second taking place in the heart of New York.
In 2015, Shayla Racquel wrote, directed, and edited a short film titled "Life's Checklist." The short film was an official selection at six film festivals and has won three awards, including Best Student Short Film.
Shayla Racquel bleeds Orange & Green, holding a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems from the illustrious Florida A&M University. She is currently a Master of Fine Arts candidate studying Film & Electronic Media at American University. After completing her thesis, she plans on graduating in May 2018. Her felicific smile and unique appreciation for life brightens the room - you will know Shayla Racquel when she greets you with “Smiles are contagious so get sick!”