Shayla Rivera has been named “Funniest Latina Comedian” by the prestigious organization “Latin 2015”. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Shayla Rivera grew up with an avid interest in machinery and fixing things. Rivera’s family always encouraged her to go to college and have a professional career. Rivera attended Texas A&M University, earning a Bachelor...read the rest
Shayla Rivera has been named “Funniest Latina Comedian” by the prestigious organization “Latin 2015”.
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Shayla Rivera grew up with an avid interest in machinery and fixing things. Rivera’s family always encouraged her to go to college and have a professional career.
Rivera attended Texas A&M University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in aerospace engineering. Then she joined McDonnell-Douglas Space Systems at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, working on NASA’s shuttle and space station programs for the next eight years. Stymied by a lack of enthusiasm for her field, Rivera left to pursue her abiding interest in psychology and became a motivational speaker.
She worked extensively as a corporate trainer, holding seminars on stress management for executives at companies around the country. It was while she was conducting seminars that Rivera discovered her comedic skills. Rivera signed up for a weekend class on stand-up comedy, at the end of which she performed a five-minute routine. It was a rousing success and a personal turning point. “I knew I’d found what I was looking for,” Rivera recalled.
Almost immediately Rivera became a regular at the Comedy Showcase in Houston, where she honed her act for the next four years. She gave up her day job and went on the road. Still, Rivera found her new career floundering. “As a scientist, I had to compete and prove myself in a male-dominated profession, but I felt accepted as an equal,” Rivera observed. “In comedy, I found much more hostility to me as a woman.” She persevered, continued to work widely on the comedy circuit, and in 1999 moved to Los Angeles with the goal of going on television. She used her experiences to create the hit one-woman show “Rocket Science and Salsa,” directed by Debbie Allen, in which Rivera toured the country. She has appeared on television in “Girls Behaving Badly,” “Ultimate Revenge” and “Funny is Funny.” She was a guest on “The Roseanne Show” and “The Martin Short Show.” She has also headlined on entertainment programs for Univision, Galavision, and on “The Latino Comedy Jam” for Telemundo.
Rivera continues to perform live whenever her schedule allows. In addition, she applies her expertise as a motivational speaker to help students and organizations. In 2004, she received the “Mario Moreno Cantinflas Award” presented by the city of Los Angelesin recognition of her talent and involvement in charitable and educational programs. She received the 2008 President’s Volunteer Award for her work on behalf of the disabled in Los Angeles and as emcee at the Annual Wheelchair Wash.
A frequent guest of universities, leadership, and women’s conferences, corporate and nonprofit events, speaker Rivera is well known for her motivational keynotes, and is a long time advocate for education, careers in science, and diversity. She was the 2010 recipient of the Latino Speakers Bureau Award for Excellence in Public Speaking.
With a successful career as an aerospace engineer, renowned actor, comedian and motivational speaker, her studies and interestin psychology have led her to develop programs for women that are entertaining, inspirational and educational. Shayla Rivera creates a motivational bridge for audiences with edu-entertainment programs and audiences find these conferences share a positive message about making changes to turnaround careers, businesses, and personal lives. In Shayla Rivera’s keynote “ABC – Awareness Begins Change,” she shares how she believes, indeed ‘knows’, that anyone can accomplish anything they would like to.
Corporations and organizations around the world are experiencing speaker Shayla Rivera’s new program: “CoachingWell-Trained Fleas,” a 90-minute seminar focused on the skill set necessary for overcoming self-imposed limitations, based on personal beliefs and conditioning as well as building competencies for managing stress and jumpstarting personal motivation.
Rivera’s humorous and inspirational keynotes are customized to suit event themed as well as to relate to a specific audience upon request.read less