Grace Byers (born Grace Lillis Gealey) was born in Butler, PA and moved to the Cayman Islands at Age 2. She moved back to America to attend the University of South Florida in Tampa, where she received a B.A. in Theater Arts. Upon graduating from college, Byers was accepted into the University of California Irvine’s graduate program and obtained her M.F.A in Acting. A successful showcase took her from Los Angeles to New York City, where Byers performed professionally. Several theater productions, short films and national commercials led her to Chicago, where she was cast as Anika Calhoun in Fox’s Empire. This marked Byers’ network television debut.