Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Naomi Sims Dead At 61

Naomi Sims, considered by many to be the first black supermodel, died over the weekend after a long bout with cancer, as reported by her son, Bob Findlay. She was 61-years-old at the time of her death. Born in Mississippi, but growing up a foster child in Pittsburgh, Naomi Sims first broke into the modeling business in the mid-sixties when she moved to New York City. Making use of her long and slender body, Sims soon found herself on the covers of several high profile magazines. In fact, when she first appeared on the cover of Ladies’ Home Journal – the November 1968 issue – it was considered a big deal, as she was the first black woman to do so. Later she appeared on the covers of Life, Cosmopolitan and Essence, furthering the cause of what was the then-grassroots of the Black is Beautiful movement. Not content to sit around and waste opportunities, Sims started several successful business under her name in the seventies. One of which, a wig company for black women – a business, at the time, solely based around white women – has become a multi-million dollar endeavor. She has also written several books geared toward black women, success and beauty. Her most renowned book was, “All About Health and Beauty for the Black Woman”. -Jessica Madison