Executive. Author. Lifestyle Brand.
Heritage and Humble Beginnings
Born in the birthplace of Jazz to parents that were medical interns at New Orleans’ Tulane
School of Medicine at the time, Kyla Ariana Thorpe came into this world as a vintage soul with a
rhythm all her own. Raised in Miami, Florida, Kyla went on to study at the esteemed University
of Miami where she received a Bachelor of Science in Communication in Public Relations, with
minors in Journalism and Entrepreneurship, as well as a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies with
an emphasis in Sociology; degrees that would serve as the foundation for her multiple career
paths which includes her most recent roles as Vice President Chief Operating Officer at the
Foundation for Sickle Cell Disease Research, (FSCDR).
The Rise and Glow Up
Kyla meticulously prepared for her desired future by studying and learning valuable intercultural
communication skills. In addition to her degrees from University of Miami, her education also
includes the art and business of fashion from the American University of Paris, as well as
international communications from media company Fiera Milano Media in Milan. Immersing
herself in other cultures has helped Kyla develop a deeper understanding of the global humanity
that she cherishes. She now works in the compassionate spaces of healthcare and wellness
with a unique creative spirit and worldly mentality, positioning herself to deliver world-class,
comprehensive healthcare to underserved populations.
Just the Beginning
Often dubbed “The Youngest in Charge” by peers, Kyla’s healthcare champion light and energy
are felt whether among close friends, or while addressing a crowd of hundreds at the
foundation’s annual Symposium. She is a shining example of what young leadership looks like
today, at ease while engaging lobbyists or prominent pharmaceutical executives, while also
effective at persuading and influencing high-ranking individuals. Her perspective is highly
valued; people trust and respect her judgments and for good reasons. She has researched the
intricacies of emerging healthcare markets, global natural resources, and the gaps and
inequities in comprehensive sickle cell disease care. At FSCDR, Kyla’s work is integral in
shaping the organization’s daily operations and mission. She states, “while my mom has had
the vision for her company, I am an essential part in much of the execution of things she needs
to complete, helping to find and put together a great team and finding the best technology
options to meet company goals.” Kyla ensures that major company processes are optimized for
profitability and productivity.
From 2017 to 2022, Kyla has helped FSCDR increase efficiency and profits, while giving herself
more free time and less stress as she intentionally prioritizes her own wellness and self-care.
She shares her leadership gems for work/life balance through her newly released e-book “Do It
All Without Actually Doing It All,” which is also reflective of Kyla’s mission to help women
harmonize their life and work.
Kyla is currently pursuing her Global Executive MBA from University of Miami’s Herbert
Business School, in addition to remaining an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc
and executive member of the Ellevate Network. When she’s not busy “doing it all,” Kyla is
expanding her harmonious lifestyle brand KatGold.