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Naomi Campbell: Trailblazing Supermodel and Fashion Icon

Full Name Naomi Elaine Campbell
Birthday May 22, 1970
Birthplace London, England
Height 5‘ 10"
Net Worth $80 million
Relationship Status Single
Social Media @naomi Naomi Campbell Facebook @NaomiCampbell

From Bob Marley Video Vixen to Budding Supermodel

Born in South London to a Jamaican mother and a father of Chinese-Panamanian descent, Naomi faced adversity as a child of biracial immigrants. At just 7 years old, she appeared in Bob Marley‘s "Is This Love" music video, showcasing her natural performing talents. But her life transformed in 1978 when she was discovered at 15 shopping in London by a modelling scout.

After appearing on the cover of British Elle Magazine in 1986, Naomi‘s career took off. She walked the catwalk for top designers like Gianni Versace and became the first black model to grace the covers of French Vogue and Time Magazine in the late ‘80s.

“She’s a trailblazer who broke down barriers for models of color like Iman and Tyra Banks.” – Beverly Johnson, first black model on American Vogue cover

Becoming a Fashion Icon in the 90s

Naomi cemented her supermodel status in the early 90s by joining the elite ranks of Christy Turlington, Cindy Crawford and more. She became a muse for fashion houses like Chanel and Versace.

Some of her most memorable modelling moments include:

  • British Vogue cover in 1991 photographed by Patrick Demarchelier
  • walking the Versace runway alongside other supermodels for GIanni Versace‘s Fall 1991 show
  • appearing in George Michael‘s "Freedom 90" music video along with Christy, Cindy, Linda and more
  • wearing the iconic Versace safety pin dress for the brand‘s Fall 1994 show
  • modelling the Vivienne Westwood Anglomania dress at the 1993 AngloMania fashion show

Naomi transcended modelling by appearing on TV shows like The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and in Spice World – cementing her as a household name far beyond just fashion circles.

Advocating for Diversity and Inclusion

As the first black supermodel to achieve such massive success, Naomi used her platform to advocate for more diversity in fashion.

“We’re finally starting to see some progress, but much more work needs to be done for true equality in this industry.” – Naomi speaking on diversity in fashion

In 1999, she organized a charity fashion show Benefit Gala alongside Nelson Mandela to raise awareness for HIV/AIDS and poverty in South Africa.

Philanthropy and Activism

Naomi has been involved in philanthropic and activist causes throughout her career:

  • Worked with organizations like Red Cross, Amnesty International, Save the Children
  • Founded Fashion for Relief in 2005 which has raised millions for causes like Hurricane Katrina, Ebola research
  • Spoken out about police brutality and racial injustice
  • Published book titled Naomi featuring photos of her charity work in Africa

“Naomi has been an amazing ally using her platform to raise awareness of issues facing the black community.” – Iman, supermodel

Building a Business Empire in Fashion

Beyond being one of the world‘s most successful models, Naomi is also an savvy entrepreneur. Her key business ventures include:

  • Founded fashion label Naomi Campbell Designs in the mid 90s
  • Launched handbag and perfume lines over the years
  • Published novel Swan in 2008
  • Founded modelling agency The Naomi Campbell Modeling Agency in 2016 to mentor young models of diverse backgrounds
  • Launched YouTube channel with modelling tips and beauty advice
  • Continues to run perfume and candle lines today

“Naomi is the epitome of model mogul – she’s built a diverse business empire while managing to stay on top in fashion decade after decade.” – Tyra Banks

Overcoming Controversies

While groundbreaking in many ways, Naomi has also been embroiled in controversies over the years. There were allegations of assault against her helpers. She struggled with anger issues and addiction – going to rehab several times.

However, Naomi took accountability for past wrongdoings. She now uses her experience to teach young models to avoid toxic behavior she once engaged in. Naomi remains an outspoken advocate, using her powerful voice for good.

Still Stunning at 50+

Even in her early 50s, Naomi continues to walk runways and appear in fashion campaigns looking as striking as ever. She‘s a regular fixture on front rows at fashion shows. The timeless beauty shows no signs of slowing down.

While newer models like Gigi Hadid and Kaia Gerber have taken the fashion world by storm, Naomi remains one of the greatest supermodels of all time – and a legend who paved the way for those following in her footsteps.