Russell Harvard was born April 16, 1981 in Pasadena, Texas to Kay and Henry Harvard. Russell and his brother, Renny, were born deaf. When the boys were old enough to start school, the family moved to Austin, Texas so they could attend the Texas School for the Deaf (TSD). Russell attended TSD from kindergarten through the twelfth grade and graduated in 1999. After graduation, he enrolled at Gallaudet University, a deaf college, in Washington D.C. He has left and returned to the university several times when one of life's distractions beckons him to try other things. One of those distractions was moving to Alaska with his mother and working in a deaf school. He returned to Gallaudet and graduated in 2008.Being deaf has not stopped Russell from pursuing the things he loves: music and acting. In high school, he performed songs by signing them in American Sign Language (ASL). In college he performed in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing as Claudio merged with Balthasar. Russell is also a member of the Bison Song Team doing the university's fight song which has become a tradition passed on since the 1960s. Russell was in the Gallaudet play: A Streetcar Named Desire as The Ghost of Earl Gray.