Daniella Carter’s main goal in life is to help others and the community around her through her work as a creative producer. So far, she has starred in the Emmy-winning documentary “The T Word,” and she is the co-founder of a film festival called Daniella’s Guestbook. She is also currently writing a book that is still in the works, so keep an eye out for that if you are interested in hearing her story.
“The best way I like to describe how I create my art is creating multicultural, multigenerational narratives that [have] universal relatability,” Daniella says.
As a Black transgender women, Daniella wants to inspire youth to be true to themselves. In 2015, Daniella gave a TED talk that describes her upbringing from a young age. She was thrown into foster care with less than desirable foster parents. At an early age, she recognized she was not like the other boys in her grade — instead, she identified more with the girls. As a result, she was kicked out of her home to save the other children from “the devil’s creation.”
According to the True Colors Fund, a nonprofit organization working to end homelessness in the LGBTQ+ community, 1.6 million youth are homeless each year and up to 40% of them identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community. In her TED talk, Daniella discusses her fight to gain representation and raise awareness about the struggles of coming out at a young age. At 14, Daniella made the decision to leave her home and to become homeless. During her journey of self-discovery, she learned the importance of creating more content that brings more diverse voices to the forefront.
This mindset launched her collaboration with SpecialGuest, a creative agency that focuses on communication, to bring those voices out. In collaboration with this agency, Daniella made a goal to connect communities, so she created an online platform that works with a curated list of professions and named it Daniella’s Guestbook. Daniella works with underappreciated artists who she finds through her website and connects them with big industry leaders ranging from executive producers of hit Hollywood shows to actresses and politicians. Daniella feels that she does what is necessary to bring together a wider community of artists, especially during the pandemic when everyone was dependent on social media to pass the time and were finding new ways of entertainment.
In today’s society, Daniella aims to fight conformity, including Hollywood standards of what voices should be given access to deals. Daniella battles to represent all people, whether or not they fit into society’s idea of what they should be or how much influence they have.
“I just wanted to make sure our people who are Hollywood standard but go overlooked because they either don’t have the access or they choose not to conform [get a chance],” Daniella says. “They sure deserve more opportunities and direct investment in terms of what equity looks like.”
In addition to Daniella’s Guestbook, Daniella started The Sistah Love Project. It was created to provide a platform to the voices of survivors of domestic violence. Daniella’s goal is to change the way we think about domestic violence. The world is in a place where we can redefine the way people think about abuse, so Daniella thought of the idea of bringing people on a wider spectrum — whether you are a cis-man, a cis-woman, gay, straight, Black, white and everything in between — together and share their experiences to show how many people are affected by domestic violence.
“I feel like it’s my responsibility, if not my civic duty, to create platforms and pipelines that remind the young persons that look just like me but don’t know I exist [that] I persevered [and] that it’s possible [to survive],” Daniella says.
Daniella draws her inspiration from her own ideology. Her love language — acts of service — also brought out the courage to serve the youth and people struggling to find their true identities. In her mind, she is giving permission to her inner child who was hurting for so long to be of service to other people who feel as though they have no voice.
To Daniella, “she can be both ”represents freedom from others’ validation.
“She can be the person to make her own voices over her life,” Danielle says. “She can be powerful, brave and courageous without needing validation from a man.”
Keep up with what Daniella’s up to on her Instagram.