Tyra Banks: Model, Mentor, Mogul

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Breaking ground as one of the most successful African-American supermodels of all time, Tyra Banks has relied on more than just a pretty face to build her brand and secure a place in the media.

Millions of supermodels have taken that leisurely stroll down fashion runways. But not all of them become media tycoons. Who would have thought that a few trips down a catwalk wearing lingerie could catapult a model into supreme stardom? Such was the case for former Victoria’s Secret model, Tyra Banks.

Modeling and acting seem to go hand in hand. But Tyra also parlayed these skills into many lucrative avenues. She is the creator, host, and den-mother on the CW network’s cult phenomenon, “America’s Next Top Model.” The hit program showed women everywhere exactly what it takes to make it in the modeling industry. The show also served as a platform to showcase Tyra’s other hidden talent; many were shocked to realize that the reality show hostess also has an impressive set of singing pipes. But instead of diving into an already saturated music industry, Tyra decided to lend her voice to a greater cause.

In an era where everyone seems to be popping up with a talk show, Tyra Banks cornered the market – securing a thriving base of young female fans wither her daytime hit, “The Tyra Banks Show.” The niche she carved out was firmly based on her dedication to mentoring teen girls; her organization TZONE focuses on helping girls from lower-income families.

Those who sat on Tyra Banks’ talk show sound stage, got the feeling that they were chatting it up with an old girlfriend; this was no accident. She effortlessly fused her experience in the industry with the uncanny ability to make an example of herself. She may have a string of modeling endorsements under her fashionable belt. But by shedding some of the pretenses of the entertainment world, Tyra has successfully managed to convert her name into a sturdy marketing tool.

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