Beverly Johnson is an American model, actress, and businesswoman. She made history when she rose to fame as the first African-American model to appear on the cover of American Vogue in August 1974. In 1975, she became the first black woman to appear on the cover of the French edition of Elle. She was the star of the reality series Beverly's Full House, on the Oprah Winfrey Network.
The New York Times named Johnson one of the 20th century's most influential people in fashion.
Born into a middle-class family in Buffalo, New York, Johnson was a champion swimmer in her youth and aspired to be a lawyer. She was a criminal justice major at Northeastern University when she tried modeling while on summer break in 1971. She quickly landed an assignment with Glamour and began working steadily. She went on to appear on more than 500 magazine covers, including the August 1974 issue of Vogue, becoming the magazine's first African-American cover model. Her appearance on the cover changed the beauty ideal in US fashion, and by 1975, every major American fashion designer had begun using African-American models.
In addition to modeling, Johnson has also written a book, Beverly Johnson's Guide to a Life of Health and Beauty, and embarked on an acting career. She has also had roles in the films Ashanti (1979), The Meteor Man (1993), Def Jam's How to Be a Player (1997), and Crossroads (2002). She has appeared in guest spots on several television series, including Martin (TV series), Law & Order, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, The Parent 'Hood and the Super Bowl episode of 3rd Rock from the Sun (1998). She served for two seasons as a celebrity judge on the TV Land series She's Got the Look, a reality series, where women over 35 compete for a modeling contract and magazine spread. At the start of the series in 2008, Johnson shared that she and other models had suffered from anorexia and bulimia during her career. She had a brief singing career, releasing one album in 1979 on Buddah Records. Johnson has been a longtime hair and beauty influencer.
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Please Note: All American Speakers Bureau is a full-service talent booking agency providing information on booking Beverly Johnson for speaking engagements, personal appearances and corporate events. Contact an All American Speakers Bureau booking agent for more information on Beverly Johnson speaking fees, availability, speech topics and cost to hire for your next live or virtual event.
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