Teenager, Iowan, Somali, Muslim and talent agency-recruited runway model: Ugbad Abdi’s rise to stardom began just after her high-school graduation. One of NYC’s top agencies messaged her on Instagram, and months later she was walking in Valentino’s Paris show. She then walked for Burberry, Chanel, Fendi and Marc Jacobs; and appeared in Vogue’s April, August and September issues. She’s done so on her own terms: abiding by her faith, she will not wear skin-bearing clothes or reveal her hair. “It’s good to see that people want to see change. It’s an honor to have a voice and maybe educate some people who didn’t know anything about the hijab before,” Abdi says to the Wall Street Journal. “I feel like this is a journey for everyone.” And, according to a recent tallying, Abdi is right—in the most prominent runway shows held in February and March of this year, around 40% of the models were non-white. Read more at Wall Street Journal.
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