Kathleen Marie Ireland, an American author, businesswoman, fashion designer, philanthropist, and former model, was born on March 20, 1963.
In the 1980s and 1990s, Ireland was a supermodel most remembered for her 13 straight Sports Illustrated swimsuit issues, three of which were covers.
In 1993, she established Kathy Ireland Worldwide (kiWW), a trademark licensing business that has made her one of the richest former models in the world.
She amassed $420 million in personal wealth as a result of her business career by 2015. Her business alone generated $3.1 billion in retail sales in 2021. The company’s brand rose to the world’s top 15 rankings, and Ireland was inducted into the Licensing Hall of Fame.
Kathy Ireland’s Early Life
On March 20, 1963, in Glendale, California, Kathleen Marie Ireland, better known by her stage name Kathy Ireland, was born. John and Barbara Ireland are her parents.
A scout from Elite Model Management found her at her high school when she was sixteen years old. She joined the management agency and started to take part in several fashion campaigns and photo shoots.
She had a prosperous modeling career in the 1980s and 1990s. She was featured on the covers of prestigious publications like Mademoiselle, Forbes, Cosmopolitan, and Vogue. Additionally, she was included in 13 straight Sports Illustrated swimsuit issues.
Kathy Ireland’s Personal Life
In 1988, Ireland wed physician Greg Olsen; they have three children together: Erik, Lily, and Chloe. She is a devoted Christian who opposes abortion. Additionally, she has been vocal about her support for Israel.
Cynthia, who is Ireland’s sister, has a child with Down syndrome. Ireland discussed the need for more research in an article she wrote about her niece. Ireland talked about her weight increase and women’s health issues on Larry King’s Life in 2009.
She had put on a pound per year for 25 years, and her son’s candid snapshot made the cumulative effect clear to her.
Kathy Ireland’s Modelling Career
Ireland was discovered by Elite Model Management at her high school when she was sixteen years old in 1979. For Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Shape Fitness, Harper’s Bazaar, Mademoiselle, Teen, and Seventeen, she has graced the covers.
Ireland claimed that while she was a teenager, a photographer allegedly “stepped the line” with her and asked her to pose topless. She didn’t feel at ease, and he disregarded her “no.” He allegedly shoved her and engaged in physical contact, and she “decked” him.
Ireland’s 1989 cover of Sports Illustrated swimsuit won the title of “The Greatest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Cover Of All Time” at the magazine’s 50th-anniversary celebration.
Several active fashion models have openly acknowledged Ireland’s remarkable rise from cover girl to multimillionaire entrepreneur as an inspiration.
Kate Upton said she wanted to emulate past cover ladies, particularly Heidi Klum and Ireland, in the following interview on the Today show after she appeared on the Sports Illustrated magazine cover in 2012.
Three years later, Hannah Jeter, the 2015 Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover model, said the same thing in an interview with Matt Lauer, adding that she “would like to model her career after someone like Kathy Ireland.”
Due to her ethical online persona and commercial acumen, Ireland has also been praised as a role model by US model and entrepreneur Ashley Graham. Graham specifically named Ireland as “one of her favorite individuals to follow on Instagram.”
Kathy Ireland’s Featured Shows
Ireland has branched out into acting in addition to modeling. In 1988, she appeared in the movie “Alien from L.A.” Her other acting credits include roles in the films “Side Out” (1990), “A Perry Mason Mystery: The Case of the Wicked Wives” (1993), “Once Upon a Christmas” (2000), and “Twice Upon a Christmas” (2001).
Among others, as well as the television series “Mystery Science Theater 3000,” “Melrose Place,” “Boy Meets World,” “The Larry Sanders Show,” and “Deadly Games” (1994).
On the ninth season of “Dancing with the Stars,” in 2009, she made her debut on reality television. During the second week of the competition, she performed with Tony Dovolani, a professional dancer, and they were the third couple to be eliminated from the show.
She made a comeback to reality television in 2016 as a guest on an episode of “The Profit,” where she counseled Max Kater, the CEO of Murchison-Hume, on business matters.
Kathy Ireland’s Business Ventures
When Ireland launched her own brand of socks for the store Kmart in 1993, she experienced her first taste of business success outside of modeling. After selling 100 million pairs of Ireland’s socks, Kmart immediately launched an entire clothing line in her honor.
Instead of just licensing her brand, she started her own marketing company the same year, Kathy Ireland Worldwide, which has gone on to become a genuinely remarkable success story.
Ireland is the CEO and majority owner of Kathy Ireland Worldwide, unlike her agreement with Kmart, where she was only lending them her name (KIWW).
Her business currently sells household goods in a variety of categories from dozens of different manufacturers. Ireland actually decided for her company to enter the home furnishings market at the suggestion and counsel of Warren Buffett, one of her friends and mentors.
Kathy Ireland’s Net Worth
A former model, actress, businesswoman, and fashion designer from the United States, Kathy Ireland is worth $500 million.
By capitalizing on her successful modeling career, Kathy Ireland amassed considerable net worth and founded a brand product marketing firm named Kathy Ireland Worldwide. She is currently the world’s wealthiest supermodel.
Former American model and actress Kathy Ireland now works as an author and businesswoman in Los Angeles. In the 1980s and 1990s, Ireland was a supermodel most recognized for her appearance in 13 consecutive Sports Illustrated swimsuit issues.
She provided the voice for Crystal in the superhero comic book series “The Fantastic Four” in 1995. She also made cameos on television this year in the movies “Backfire!” and “The Watcher.”
This diva began writing in 2002, and she published a book titled “Powerful Inspirations: Eight Lessons that Will Change Your Life.”
Kathy Ireland’s net worth was $500 Million as of July 2022. She is also among the sexiest women.