Tyra Banks biography
Bio:Prior to graduating from Immaculate Heart High School in 1991, she wanted to give modeling a try. She applied and was accepted at Loyola Marymount University, that Elite modeling agency gave the 17-year-old, her first modeling job. Afterwards, she had been rejected many times for modeling assignments, which led her to drop out of college so quickly.
Within Banks's first week in Paris, other designers were so entranced by her presence on the runway that she was booked for an unprecedented 25 shows--a record in the business for a newcomer. She has done extensive print and/or runway work for fashion/advertising giants such as Anna Sui, Coors Light, CoverGirl, Badgley Mischka, Bill Blass, Cynthia Rowley, Christian Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karan, Gemma Kahng, H&M, Isaac Mizrahi, Maria Snyder, McDonald's, Michael Kors, Milk, Nicole Miller, Nike, Inc., Oscar de la Renta, Pepsi, Perry Ellis, Randy Kemper, Richard Tyler, Rifat Ozbek, Swatch, Todd Oldham, Tommy Hilfiger, Victoria's Secret, XOXO, and Yves Saint Laurent. She has appeared on the covers of such magazines as Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, and Elle. Banks was the first African American woman on the covers of GQ and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. In 1997, she received the Michael Award for Supermodel of the Year. Also in '97, she was chosen for the cover of the Victoria's Secret catalog, making her the first African American to be so honored. Banks retired from modeling in May 2005 to concentrate on her television show. She walked the runway for the final time at the 2005 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show. On numerous occasions, she has been sought after to appear in Playboy magazine; however, she has turned each request down.
Banks' television career began on the fourth season of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, in which she played lead character Will's ex-girlfriend Jackie Ames, and made eight appearances throughout the series. Other screen credits include Felicity, MADtv, Nick Cannon's Wild 'N Out (in which she was featured as special guest host and team captain), and The Price Is Right (guest-starring as a Barker's Beauty).
Currently, Banks can be seen on television as the hostess, head judge, and executive producer of the UPN (now the CW) television show America's Next Top Model. In addition, she does double duty as the host of The Tyra Banks Show, a daytime talk show which premiered on September 12, 2005 and recently began its second season, drawing over 1.9 million viewers an episode. The show features stories about everyday people mixed in with celebrity interviews, much like the early format of The Oprah Winfrey Show. Under the slogan "Every woman has a story...and it happened to Tyra too", Banks promotes her show using emotional flashbacks to her own childhood and adolescence. Many of the episodes deal with issues facing women today.
On the big screen, Banks has had minor roles in a few movies. Her first big screen role came in 1995 when she co-starred in the critically acclaimed drama Higher Learning. She went on to co-star with Lindsay Lohan in the Disney film Life-Size, playing a doll named Eve who comes to life. Other notable roles include 1999's Love Stinks, 2000's Coyote Ugly, and 2002's Halloween: Resurrection.
In personal life she has previously been linked romantically to musical artist Seal, NBA players Rick Fox and Chris Webber, hockey player Mark Messier, and director John Singleton. She has said repeatedly that she has no plans on dating or getting married any time soon. Currently, she is enjoying the single life and has recently moved to New York City where she focuses on both of her TV shows.
Campaigns:Alma Couture, CoverGirl, Dolce & Gabbana, Elite chocolate, H&M, Milk, Rifat Ozbek, Swatch skin, Victoria's Secret, X-O-X-O and Yves Saint Laurent
Covers:Photo, Max, Harper's Bazaar, Amica, Anna, Il Venerdi, L'Espresso, Elle, DT, Cosmopolitan, Maxim, Elle, GQ, Sports Illustrated, Details, Shape, Fitness, Ocean Drive
Fashion shows:Bella Freud, Victoria's Secret, Alberta Ferretti, Anna Molinari, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karan, Ralph Lauren, Yves Saint Laurent