Author & Speaker
Anna Nyakana was born in Berlin, Germany in 1986 to a Ugandan father and German-Moldavian mother. Her family immigrated to the United States in the early 90's, settling in Stamford, Connecticut. Anna pursued her writing and musical passions beginning at the age of 6 and spent her teenage years honing her skills of song-writing and live performance until releasing her self-titled album in 2007. Her hit-single "Just a Day" crowned her the winner of the “Starbucks Music Makers Competition," which sparked an East coast tour in 2009. She continued forward, promoting her album and playing in countless venues and media outlets including FOX 25 (Boston, MA), NBC 10 (Philadelphia, PA), MGM Grand at Foxwoods Casino & Resort (Ledyard, CT), Fox Theater at Foxwoods Casino & Resort (Ledyard, CT), Penn State University (Philadelphia, PA), The Fire (Philadelphia, PA), SOB'S (New York, NY), Bryant Park (New York, NY), Canal Room (New York, NY), Piano's (New York, NY),and Channel 3 News (Hartford, CT).
Anna Nyakana proceeded to attain her Bachelor’s degree in Business in 2011 and soon after extended her writing talents into her first literary work, “The Student Survival Guide to Online College.” She was able to guide thousands of students during their journey of attaining higher education through an online platform through this quick guide but yearned to help a different demographic close to her heart: children. Through her own personal experiences, Anna discovered there was an overwhelming need for multicultural children’s books where heroines could slay the fiercest of dragons versus filling the typical princess in distress role. Out of this desire, the Niyah Zuri series was born and Anna took the next few years to write and publish her greatest literary work. “Niyah Zuri & The Pharaoh’s Throne” hails as a time-bending exploration of ancient lands lead by the headstrong Niyah Zuri and her best friends Miguel and Hugo Gonzales. This chapter book is geared towards upper elementary through lower middle school readers and comes equipped with a full glossary and free online resources for parents and teachers to access.
Anna has been featured on many media outlets to spread the Niyah Zuri message including SiriusXM, Entercom Radio, NBC CT, ABC WTNH, FOX 61, and News 12 Connecticut. During her interview on SiriusXM’s “The Karen Hunter Show,” Anna stressed the importance of diversity in the classroom and the purpose of the Niyah Zuri series, “It is critical children see a reflection of themselves in the books that they read. My mission is to inspire them, one adventure at a time.” Working directly with school administrators in her state, she has implemented the Niyah Zuri series into the curriculum of several school districts and is working tirelessly to spread the Niyah Zuri message of diversity, heroinism, and history across the country through in-school author visits and virtual lessons. “Niyah Zuri & The Pharaoh’s Throne” is available on www.annanyakana.com, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. Anna Nyakana lives with her children in Connecticut, U.S.A.