EARLY LIFE & CAREER
Sheyene was born in Caracas, the only child of a family of Italian and Brazilian descent. She holds dual-citizenship with Italy, from where her mother hails. During the sixth month of her mother's pregnancy, Sheyene's biological father tragically died in a car accident. Her mother was both a veterinarian and the CEO of the family-owned mining company located in southeastern Venezuela. She was educated at a private bilingual Spanish/English school; she then went on to study French and Portuguese. Sheyene studied Medicine at the Universidad Central de Venezuela (UCV). Prior to attending university, she represented her school in a mathematics and chemistry competitions, ranking at the highest levels. While pursuing her dream of becoming a doctor, she worked as a model part time and participated in the Miss Venezuela Pageant. Due to a mass opposition protest plunging the university into turmoil Sheyene’s university year was prematurely ended. Around that time, a prominent TV producer discovered Sheyene leading to starring roles in highly rated prime time soap operas broadcasted internationally. Productions such as “Camaleona” and “Mujer con pantalones” further paved the way to international renown. Sheyene is known for her work in more than 30 countries, including Azerbaijan, Germany, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, and Puerto Rico, airing over several different time periods with record overseas sales. Sheyene´s entertainment productions have been affiliated with Telemundo, NBC's Spanish-language network, broadcasting over cable or DTH systems (DirecTV Latin America), translated and dubbed into more than 15 languages. She studied at the RCTV Acting Academy, in Venezuela and recognized institutions such as the University Carlos III of Madrid and Sotheby's Institute. She has received various accolades, such as the 2 de Oro and the Imagen Award; she has also adds stellar credits in her role as a TV host and producer.
During a family trip, her mother and stepfather were killed in an automobile accident, leaving Sheyene with no living relatives. A year after losing her family, she received a diagnosis of advanced stage 4 lymphoma, a very rare type of cancer with only 60 cases reported worldwide and no survivors. The cancer had spread through 85% of her body, and doctors gave her only 3 months to live. Sheyene was treated in Florida in the United States by Dr. Humberto Caldera, suffering no hair loss and maintaining a healthy appearance. Sheyene underwent three years of chemotherapy, but she was never completely disconnected from the entertainment industry. During her chemotherapy treatment Sheyene starred in two films in Mexico. After becoming the only survivor of this rare type of cancer, she started the Sheyene eHealth, a telemedicine program that allows physicians and healthcare professionals to provide patient care, consultation and counseling, via the Internet, email, and even via telephone, targeting primarily people with rare diseases.
Sheyene`s family has owned and operated mining business in Venezuela, since 1954. She serves as CEO of the company after her parents suddenly passed away. She is implementing autonomous mining technology as part of its drive towards robotics under its work program. In 2017, Gerardi expanded operations to work in both space and Earth-bound applications. The recognition that leadership success requires a multifaceted approach, led her to pursue a robust internal education. In 2018, Sheyene earned a master in In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) offered by NASA, with 100% final grade, later the same year; she co-founded the NASA CLASS Planetary Landing Research Laboratory. Subsequently, Gerardi received a letter from the U.S government granting her the status of an individual with exceptional ability of national interest. The National Interest status is the Nation’s highest civilian recognition, presented to individuals for achievements and significant contributions to the security, prosperity, and social wellbeing of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.
In partnership with the SBIR/STTR, Sheyene jointly established a robotics R&D laboratory and doctoral workstation to further strengthen the iteration of technology. The Sheyene Institute conducts applied research in Autonomous Navigation Technologies (ANTs). The primary technical goal of the Sheyene Institute is to develop fully autonomous operations, navigation, and decision-making capabilities for deployment on in situ planetary and lunar missions. Her plan to accelerate human expansion into space and broadening the ownership of space industry resulted in an invitation to join planetary scientists from NASA’s CLASS as the Robotics Outreach lead to organize a series of robotics competitions for universities and to develop robotics for constructing landing pads on the Moon. After becoming heavily involved with NASA, Sheyene’s concern for the plight of the economically disadvantaged had crystallized. A social justice goal of Sheyene´s current project is to address concerns that the exponential expansion of space industry will create deep economic and political disparity in the coming century. After relocating to the United States, Sheyene entertainment productions are dedicated to foster awareness related to the space revolution, as part of her global educational initiative.
Gerardi established a non-profit organization in 2007. The scope of its work encompasses early-stage testing, research and collaboration on expertise to inform and share insights, plus education and outreach efforts. In partnership with non-governmental entities, international and regional governments, the organization has reached over 10 countries across South America, Middle East and Europe.
Sheyene is member of the International Political Science Association (IPSA) and to the Committee on Professional Ethics, Rights, and Freedom. Gerardi's interests include international relations between OECD States and developing countries, the diffusion of the Internet, the politics of foreign aid and the impact on policy. The broad issues to which it attends integrally involves technological globalization, space law, human rights, international security, sovereignty, federalism, war, peace, terrorism, and so forth. The organization supports leaders on strategy, policy and delivery, while also working to advance national and international human rights laws. Academic programs from institutions such as Harvard and Stanford University have further enhanced her executive learning and development. Sheyene has knowledge and expertise working with Red Hat® Enterprise Linux, Red Hat JBoss, Enterprise Java Beans, Java Persistence API, and JAX-RS for REST services. In 2020, she joined a program offered by the University of Naples Federico II to acquire a degree in Political Science, her background also include four Micro-Masters in International Law from the University of Louvain's Law Faculty, in Belgium; Law and public policy from Harvard University; Space Law from University of Nebraska College of Law in Lincoln. She has recently completed the campaign-training program for candidates from the NDTC in USA.
Sheyene is also active in the area of robotics towards self-driving cars. In 2017, Sheyene established a robotic company spun out of the Sheyene Institute to commercialize a robotics product line for commercial uses. In 2022, the firm has obtained the SBA Women-Owned Business certification used by U.S. federal agencies for federal contract. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, CA, the company specializes in technology integration focusing on mobility needs for organizations across public sector organizations, large enterprise corporations, government agencies and military forces. Sheyene Technology is a privately held business, wholly owned by Sheyene Family Office.