PHOTOS BY CHRIS JOHNSON
In December of 2020, Rochester Woman Online had the chance to interview ROC Award Winning Host & Radio Personality for The Beat 105.5 FM, “the girl with big dreams”, Racquie B. for the cover of our January 2021 New Year New You edition.
We have had so much fun going back and forth, from promoting the 2021cover, to selecting photos from her amazing photoshoot with cover photographer Chris Johnson, to the crazy 2020 and more.
We hope you enjoy what she had to tell us, and learn a little bit about this radio “queen” and why we know all her dreams will come true!
Who is Racqui B? Tell us a little about yourself and where you are from.
I’m just a girl from a small Caribbean island that had big dreams. I was born on the island of St. Lucia, and raised on the island of St. Croix. I came to Rochester in 2005 to attend the University of Rochester. I later graduated with a BA in English Lit, and made Rochester my second home. Most people are stunned when they learn that I’m not originally from Rochester, because the love and support I receive here is sometimes surreal. But I pride myself on being genuine, authentic, and self-made, and I guess that has won over the hearts and respect of this community. I worked hard to be respected for my talent, and I refuse to apologize for that.
When did you know you wanted to be a radio personality and why?
Entertainment and media have always been passions of mine. Naturally I have a huge personality, and I enjoy performing for crowds, so a career in this field made sense.
However, radio was never in my plan; it basically fell into my lap.
It all began with me just doing a friend a favor by cohosting her radio segment, and from there my love affair with being on-air developed. This really came naturally to me. It was fate. It was destined.
What made you pick the Newhouse School of Syracuse University for Broadcast Journalism?
The Newhouse reputation supersedes anything I can say about my decision. If you want to be the best, you go where the best go; not to mention it is literally right down the street. Applying to Newhouse was me testing my purpose and skill. I made a pact with my God. Something like, “If this is my purpose then get me in.” Not only did I get in, but I must have been like top five in my class.
What is your favorite part of doing what you do?
I get to be myself. This industry is now rewarding people for being themselves. Every time I turn on that mic there’s no façade there’s no fraudulence, it’s Racqui being Racqui. And when I hear that positive feedback from my listeners, it motivates me to be my BEST self every time.
Do you have any advice for other females wanting to jump in to the world of broadcasting?
The one thing I’ve learned about this industry is: if it’s not innate it will translate. Some things can be taught, other things, like being a media personality, is best served with a side of purpose. So with that being said, just make sure this is your heart’s desire, because the road to notoriety in this industry is long and often unfair. Once you fall in love with it don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Networking, branding, practicing and creating your own opportunities are essential parts of this business.
What has been your biggest challenge in 2020?
Balancing all aspects of my life continues to be a challenge for me, but I’m getting better. Starting a career, trying to be a great mother and girlfriend, finding time for friends and family, it’s a juggling act that sometimes ends with me dropping a ball or two, but I’m trying.
What about your biggest success and why?
My biggest success is that I never settled. I refuse to get complacent in my career. I’m always hungry for more. This mindset has earned me multiple awards, some college degrees, and opportunities I couldn’t even fathom.
Some consider you a social media influencer…why do you think that is?
In my opinion, an influencer is someone that uses their popularity and platform for the betterment of themselves and everyone else around them. For the most part, I try to use my platform to inspire and empower by my actions. If I can inspire just one person with my journey, then my job is done.
Did you have any ‘a-ha!’ moments that made you rethink your being a radio personality?
I’ve never questioned my decision to be a radio personality. However, I have questioned my time in radio. Do I want to be in radio forever? Would I rather do TV? Am I ready to venture into a bigger market? These questions and decisions still haunt me till this day.
What do you know now that you didn’t know three years ago?
Having your city behind you is the first step to success. When your hometown believes in you and supports you, that will propel you forward faster than you could even imagine. Rochester’s support has given me opportunities in other cities, and continues to push me forward.
What was the biggest obstacle you faced, and how did you overcome it?
My biggest obstacle was probably proving to my mother that this was the right career choice for me. My mom’s opinion means so much to me, and her desire is for me to be stable in all areas of my life. She wanted me to be an engineer. I still laugh about that to this day. She couldn’t understand my love for broadcasting and reporting, because success doesn’t come overnight in this field. So I brought her to the radio station with me one day, and when she saw me in action it all began to make sense to her; and she has been supportive ever since.
You seem so much bigger then Rochester. NY…Do you have any plans of ever working in a bigger city?
OFCOURSE!! Rochester is a great foundation, but I envision myself being bigger and better. I also believe that everything happens when it is supposed to. My time will come when the higher powers see fit. Until then I will continue mastering what I can now, and trust the process.
Are there any resources or even advice that have really helped you on your journey?
You ever heard the saying God puts people in your life for a reason and/or a season? It seems like everyone that has been in my life thus far, or came into my life during this stage, were exactly who and what I needed. All the advice and resources I’ve acquired on my journey have always reassured me of one thing: that I am who I say I am, and I am where I’m supposed to be. Everyone’s journey is customized. The worse thing you can do is compare your progress with others. Focus on your task, and everything will begin to fall into place.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in your career thus far?
This one is easy; getting my masters degree. The sacrifices I made to accomplish that goal were unbearable at first, but in the end were all worth it.
What do you think your unique skill(s) is that has helped you become successful?
My personality, my authenticity, and my integrity. You can’t buy any of those things, and they can’t be duplicated. Those three qualities have opened so many doors for me, and made me stand out in a city where everyone wants to shine.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
The last time I answered a question like this it all came to fruition…so here I go again. In five years I see myself moving my family to a bigger city to further a successful TV and radio career in a larger market. Possibly another baby. I just want to go as far as I can in this industry.
like this it all came to fruition…so here I go again. In five years I see myself moving my family to a bigger city to further a successful TV and radio career in a larger market. Possibly another baby. I just want to go as far as I can in this industry.
What is one thing our readers may not know about you?
I use to be the biggest tomboy growing up. I played basketball in High School so I was most comfortable in baggy clothes and sneakers. It still amazes me how much of a 360 I did as far as my image. But, even though my style has changed, my tomboy spirit is still very much alive. I can sip martinis with the girls and turn around and chug beers with the guys. They also say former tomboys make the best girlfriends.