Chiquita Renee “Kiki” Shepard (born July 15, 1951) is an American television host, best known as the longtime co-host of It’s Showtime at the Apollo. Ms. Shepard religiously guards the date of her birth, but she is a native of Tyler, Texas. Besides her work on “Showtime..”, Sheppard has also worked as an actress and voice actor.
KiKi Shepard is a versatile performer who loves entertaining, whether on film, television, or the stage. KiKi is best known as the “Queen of Fashion”. For 15 years, millions of viewers tuned in weekly to “see what she will wear”, as she showed off the season’s latest designs in haute-couture as the smashing co-host of the original “It’s Showtime at the Apollo”- TV’s hottest late-nite variety show.
Ms. Shepard hosted Disney’s first Black Heritage Celebration at Disney World, In Orlando, Florida. The event paid tribute to the Apollo’s sixty year contribution to the entertainment world. Kiki happily returned to Disney’s Pleasure Island to the BET Soundstage Club for another year of tributes to thatgreat institution……the Apollo Theater.
KiKi Shepard founded her K.I.S Foundation (www.thekisfoundation.org) in 2007 at the urging of many friends and sickle cell disease advocates. She has been raising awareness of sickle cell disease for over 20 years now and actually has the sickle cell trait herself. Her celebrity events with Bill Bellamy, Dawnn Lewis, Sallie Richardson Whitfield, Dondre’ Whitfield, Wesley Jonathan, Tatyana Ali, Thom Barry, Coley Speaks, Jackee, Joe Torry, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Dule’ Hill, Kristoff St.John, Kym Whitley, NBA star Keisha Brown, Gina Rivera, Jenifer Lewis, Theresa Randle, Art Evans and others.
She believes in God and tries to walk with him in everything she does. In her talks she always emphasizes the need for education, and the determination to “be the best that you can be.” These goals were instilled in KiKi by both her parents at a very early age. She lives with these standards at the forefront of her mind and spirit, and, along with God’s help, an unfaltering will to succeed.
Ms. Shepard has appeared on screen many times, lending her voice to Polly the tadpole in “Jamal, the Funny Frog”, voicing Malinda in “The Semprini Triplets”, and “That’s My Pop” as brainy bear Naomi. She has appeared on the NBC miniseries “Lady Boss”, starred as Trelawney, a clairvoyant, in the Hulk Hogan action series “Thunder in Paradise”, and created the role of Beru for the TV series “Conan the Barbarian.” She starred in the 2006 short film “Sunday Evening Haircut” Other film credits include HBO’s “Miss Evers’ Boys,” “The Josephine Baker Story”, “A Rage in Harlem,” and “Cotton Club”.
Kiki was referenced in the song “So Fresh, So Clean” by the hip hop group Outkast which was released in 2001, and in the song “No Church in the Wild” on the duet album Watch the Throne by “Jay-Z” and “Kanye West”, released in May 2012.
KiKi Shepard has been recently confirmed as the spokesperson of In Every Way Gourmet, a boutique grocery specializing in gourmet quality foods for accomplished and aspiring chefs alike.