A proud Chicago native turned Houstonian, Andrea Riles is an actor, storyteller, educator, advocate, and self-appointed Chief Purpose Partner. Andrea got her start in theatre as a toddler when she first began acting in her church’s drama productions. She later began performing in youth theatre groups, and high school productions, and after moving to Houston, having gone on a theatre hiatus for over 10 years, is now back on stage, where she belongs.
Most recently, Andrea has been seen in: Seussical (Sour Kangaroo), School Girls; Or the African Mean Girls Play (Ericka), Grease (Marty), and is preparing for her role in Little Shop of Horrors (Audrey 2).
When she’s not onstage or in the boardroom, Andrea is a special educator for high school students with diverse needs. Andrea serves as the Social & Emotional Learning Liaison in HISD, sits on her school’s Site-Based Decision Making Committee, and is the Special Olympics Basketball Sponsor/Coach. Formerly, Andrea has served as a program director for One Heart Source, a nonprofit based in Cape Town, SA, and Montego Bay, Jamaica, served as a program coordinator for the Motivational Mentorship Program at Oak Park and River Forest HS in Illinois, and ran correspondence for FLOTUS in the White House under the Obama Administration.
Andrea is committed to racial equity in educational institutions, as well as in the arts, therefore she uses her platform to address culture, climate, and behavior, facilitate professional development around pedagogy and practices, and bring awareness to the impact of race on teaching, learning, and storytelling.
As an artist, educator, and pursuer of purpose, Andrea lives by the Steve Maraboli quote, “I was put on this Earth to achieve my greatest self, to live out my purpose and to do it fearlessly.”