The career of composer-pianist and writer Krystal J. Folkestad, nee Grant, spans from lecture-recitals in elementary schools of her hometown, Birmingham, Alabama, to performances at experimental venues in New York City. She has taught in college classrooms, after-school programs, a homeless shelter, and a senior center. She majored in piano performance and Spanish at Vanderbilt University, where she developed her passion for creating multicultural artistic experiences. With her Ph.D. in composition from Stony Brook University, she served as an assistant professor of composition and theory in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, for five years. She has researched modern-day slavery and ethical fashion to write for nonprofit and social enterprise blogs. She lives with her husband and son in Richmond, Virginia, where she creates an oasis for underrepresented students through tutoring, composition commissions, and talks.