Raqiyah Mays (born November 11, 1978 in Piscataway, New Jersey) is an American actress and former hip-hop journalist. a co-host on The Kiss Wake Up Club, and weekend personality on Emmis Communications-owned station, 98.7 Kiss FM. Mays was also a Sunday afternoon personality at sister station WQHT ("Hot 97"), where she reported on entertainment and gave social commentary.
Mays was one of the founders and former executive editor of the politically themed hip hop publication, The Ave magazine Founded in 2004, the magazine worked to balance coverage of social issues and entertainment. She resigned in December 2007 and The Ave folded in the summer of 2008. She has written for Vibe, XXL, The Source, and the Associated Press. Although an accomplished writer, Mays had trouble reading as a child. However, with help from her mother, her literacy improved. She attended Penn State to become a lawyer, but changed her interest to radio and transferred to Hampton University without her mother's knowledge.
Mays once produced shows for DJ Grandmaster Flash at Sirius Satellite Radio, and worked at City College's college radio station WHCR-FM. She was married on September 4, 2006, lives in Brooklyn, and originates from Piscataway and Newark, New Jersey.
A lifelong devotee of the theatrical arts, Mays studied at the renowned Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York, founded by Lee Strasberg, the patriarch of American method acting. Raqiyah also trained with esteemed acting coach Tracy Moore[disambiguation needed]-Marable and her ‘The Spirited Actor’ program. In Platanos & Collard Greens, the romantic comedy about the blending of Latino and African American cultures, Mays portrays the character Malady, in one of NYC’s longest running AUDELCO award winning Off-Broadway plays. Rosalie is the role Mays covers in Auction Block to Hip Hop, the dramatic play about redemption and damnation. Mays says of her leap into the acting field, “This, along with hip-hop, has been the great passion of my life. To be a part of critical and commercial successes such as Platanos… and Auction…, is a blessing and an honor. My goal now is to parlay these opportunities into more theatre, film and TV roles that display the vast emotional range that I’m capable of.”
Raqiyah’s acting stints also include appearances in the NYC adaptation of the iconic play The Vagina Monologues, and the indie film documentary The Art of Love and Struggle. She will also feature in the upcoming feature film releases Stephanie’s Wedding and Grand Slammed.