Kimora Lee Simmons is certainly a well-known name among lovers of fashion, especially in the United States of America. Kimora Simmons started modeling at a young age. When she was 11 years old, her mother enrolled her in a modeling class, and after a few years, she was discovered by Marie-Christine Kollock.
Kimora was eventually sent to Paris, and this was the beginning of a very successful modeling career.
Besides fashion and modeling, Kimora Lee Simmons also made a name for herself in acting. She starred in several films, including The Big Tease, For Love or Money, Beauty Shop, and Waist Deep. The fashion star has also appeared in many television series and shows such as America’s Next Top Model Kimora: House of Fab and Kimora: Life on Fab Lane.
Kimora Lee Simmons Biography
The supermodel was born on May 4, 1975, like Kimora Lee Perkins in Missouri, USA, and is an American national. She was raised by her mother, who recognized her potential as a model and promptly enrolled her in a modeling school at a tender age.
Over the years, the children’s model finally became a sensation in the industry and made a close friendship with Tyra Banks. Kimora Lee Simmons received her basic training at Lutheran High School North in St. Louis, Missouri.
Although she began her modeling career as a child, her career as a fashion designer only began after she married her first husband, Russell Simmons, who was already designing baby clothes from his Phat Farm clothing line. Kimora replaced him, and finally, Baby Phat was born in 1999. Kimora became creative director and president of the brand, eventually taking it from simple baby T-shirts to a complete line of urban women’s clothing.
Kimora and Russell made the conscious decision to sell the Baby Phat brand to the Kellwood Company for a whopping $140 million and then expanded into the jewelry segment, leading to the creation of the Diamond Diva line. The enterprising couple signed an agreement with Coty Inc. that allowed them to create their own line of women’s fragrances under the Kimora Lee Simmons brand, and another agreement with Vida Shoes International to create a women’s footwear line.
Her Parents, Husband, and Kids
The fashion icon is of mixed ethnicity, her African-American father Vernon Whitlock Jr. was like the proverbial “Jack of all Trade” who held several jobs as an investigator for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, as a federal marshal, as a bail bondsman and much later as a hairdresser in St. Louis.
When Kimora Lee Simmons was still in her formative years, her father was sentenced to 24 years in prison for selling narcotics. Although Vernon was released after five years, his marriage had already ended. Kimora was raised by her Japanese mother Joanne Perkins.
The fashion icon and model met her first husband, businessman Russell Simmons, at the age of 17 at New York Fashion Week. An affair began, which culminated in a wedding on the Caribbean island of St. Bart’s on December 20, 1998. The acting pastor of the day was none other than Russell’s brother Joseph “Reverend Run Simmons” of Run-DMC, who is a popular rapper and also a pastor in the Pentecostal Church.
The couple’s marriage was blessed with two girls, Ming Lee Simmons, born in 2000, and Aoki Lee Simmons, born a few years later. Unfortunately, the marriage of Russell and Kimora broke up in 2008 and their divorce became official in 2009.
Kimora’s next lover is a famous actor and model Djimon Hounsou. Although they never made it to the altar, they had a child together (Kenzo Lee Hounsou) before they stopped in 2012. Two years later, in 2014, the celebrated model made the alliance with Tim Leissner, who worked as an investment banker, and the following year they welcomed a son named Wolfe Lee Leissner.
The estimate of her assets was increased by several large sums when her company made a whopping $140 million in January 2004 by selling her clothing line. Kimora Lee Simmons boasts a stunning net worth of $50 million, which is believed to have been accumulated from her handsome annual income of £9,400,000.