Shadra Strickland is an award-winning illustrator. She won the Ezra Jack Keats Award and the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent in 2009 for her work in her first picture book, Bird, written by Zetta Elliott. Strickland co-illustrated Our Children Can Soar, winner of a 2010 NAACP Image Award. Shadra studied, design, writing, and illustration at Syracuse University and later went on to complete her M.F.A. at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.
Shadra travels the country conducting workshops and sharing her work with children, teachers, and librarians. She currently works and teaches illustration at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland.