Joan Smalls

Born:     July 11, 1988
Birthplace:       Hatillo, Puerto Rico
Zodiac Sign:  Cancer

Career and Life

Joan Smalls Rodriguez is a supermodel and actress. In 2013 and 2018 she ranked at #8 on Forbes magazine's "World's Highest-Paid Models" list. In 2011, she became the first Latina model to represent Estée Lauder cosmetics. In January 2014, Smalls appeared on the "Return of the Supermodel" cover of American Elle. In 2012, Smalls was ranked the number #1 model in the world by Models.com; she is currently ranked as one of the New Supers in the fashion industry. In 2010, Smalls began modeling for Victoria's Secret, and was featured in the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show from 2011 to 2016.

She has two sisters. Her father, Eric Smalls, is an accountant, and is West Indian from St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands of African and Irish ancestry. Smalls' mother, Betzaida Rodríguez, is a social worker, who is Puerto Rican, and of Spanish, Taino, and Indian (South Asian) heritage. Smalls graduated magna cum laude from the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico with a bachelor's degree in psychology. Upon graduation, she moved to New York City to become a model. She was signed by Elite Model Management in 2007. In 2009, she left Elite Model Management and signed with IMG Models worldwide, where she changed her focus to runway work. She was signed as a Givenchy exclusive for Riccardo Tisci's Spring/Summer Haute Couture show in January 2010, and her modeling career took off.

Smalls is involved with a non-profit organization called Project Sunshine, where she helps children with medical needs. Smalls was part of the ‘Jeans for Refugees’ campaign, a Johny Dar project and artistic fundraising initiative dedicated to helping refugees around the world, with all proceeds going to the International Rescue Committee. She has also been involved with The Garden of Dreams Foundation, a non-profit organization that works with The Madison Square Garden Company and MSG Networks, Inc. to positively impact the lives of children facing obstacles.

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