Kimora Lee Simmons

Real Name : Kimora Lee Perkins

Born: 04/05/1975 (48 yo)
Birth place: St. Louis, Missouri (USA)

Citizenship : USA
Ethnicity : Afro-American & Korean ancestry

Occupation : Fashion Model
Active Years: 1989-present


Kimora Lee Simmons is a former American fashion model. She created Baby Phat and was CEO/Creative Director through 2010.

In 2011, she was hired as president/Creative Director for JustFab. Her current net worth is prominently gained through her modelling, acting and fashion career.


Simmons was born in St. Louis, Missouri. Her Korean mother, Joanne Perkins was adopted by an American serviceman during the Korean War and raised in the USA. She later worked as an administrator for Social Security. Kimora's father, Vernon Whitlock Jr., is African American, and worked as a Federal Marshal, an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigator, a bail bondsman, and later became a barber in St. Louis. He was sentenced to 24 years in prison when Kimora was in grade school for distribution of narcotics. Whitlock was released after three, after turning state's evidence against his supplier. Her parents split up and she was raised by her mother.

Growing up in the northern St. Louis suburb of Florissant, Missouri, Kimora was the target of schoolyard bullying and teasing, because of her height (she was 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m) tall by the time she was 10 years old) and mixed ancestry. To help her, Simmons's mother enrolled her in a modeling class when she was eleven years old. Two years later she was discovered by Marie-Christine Kollock (a representative for seminal Paris Agency Glamour) at a Model Search in Kansas City (organized by Kay Mitchell) and sent to Paris. Simmons is a graduate of Lutheran North High School in St. Louis, Missouri.

Fashion business

Just after her fourteenth birthday, Simmons was awarded an exclusive modeling contract with Chanel and went to work under the tutelage of Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld. She quickly gained attention in the fashion world when she closed Lagerfeld's haute couture show in 1989. "Everything people thought was weird about me before", Kimora told People Weekly, "was now good".

In 2004, Russell Simmons sold Phat Farm to Kellwood Company for $140 million. When Russell stepped down as CEO of Phat Fashions LLC in September 2007, Simmons—who was already Creative Director of Baby Phat (which was a branch off Phat Farm Industries)—was promoted by Kellwood to President and Creative Director of Phat Fashions. It was her goal to turn fashion label Baby Phat, launched in 1999, into an "aspirational lifestyle brand". Her high-end sportswear line, KLS, launched in Fall 2007.

A self-help book written by Simmons, Fabulosity: What It Is and How to Get It, was published by HarperEntertainment in February 2006. The book is set to function as a 'lifestyle manual' on everything from spirituality and finances to fashion and beauty. She has also launched five perfumes for women: Goddess, Golden Goddess, Seductive Goddess, Baby Phat Fabulosity, Love me, and the last fragrance she put out from her time with Baby Phat, Dare Me.

On September 1, 2010, Simmons parted ways with Baby Phat and its management company, Kellwood. The details as to why Simmons was removed as Creative Director haven't been very clear; some blog sites are claiming that it was because Simmons was spending too much money on company pursuits and giving far too much pay to herself and her children.[14] Since the split, Simmons plans to launch her KLS collection and Kouture by Kimora Brands. She also has an exclusive brand coming to Macy's that will offer stylish clothes for under $40. On September 14, 2011, Simmons announced on her website that she is the new Creative Director and President of JustFab, a personalized shopping website.

Film and television

Simmons has appeared in small roles in television and films including Beauty Shop, Brown Sugar, and Waist Deep. She has also appeared in music videos for Ginuwine and Usher.

In 2003, Simmons signed on as one of the judges on America's Next Top Model, Cycle 1. She was scheduled to return but later chose not to. She has been a co-host of Sony Television's syndicated talk show Life & Style.

On August 5, 2007, season one of her reality TV show, Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane, premiered on Style Network. The show chronicles her daily life and routine as a mother and then-CEO of Phat Fashions.

Other Ventures

Simmons sponsored the KLS Rushcard, which included her own line of purple Rushcards.

Personal life

Djimon Hounsou and Kimora Lee Simmons arrive at the premiere of Push, Mann Theater, Westwood, 2009

Lee met Russell Simmons in November 1992 during New York City's Fashion Week. She was 17 and about to finish high school; he was 35 and a self-admitted ladies' man. The couple were married by Simmons's brother, rapper and Pentecostal minister, Joey "Reverend Run" Simmons of Run-DMC, on the Caribbean island of St. Bart's on December 20, 1998. They have two daughters, Ming Lee Simmons (born January 21, 2000) and Aoki Lee Simmons (born August 16, 2002). In July 2004, Kimora was arrested and charged with reckless driving, eluding police, driving with a broken brake light, and marijuana possession after a two-mile chase that began near the Saddle River Police Station and ended outside her estate in Saddle River, New Jersey. On August 9, 2005, Simmons pled guilty to the reckless driving charge and was placed on six months probation. Kimora and Russell officially separated in March 2006.

By March 2007, Simmons was dating actor and model Djimon Hounsou, and in March 2008, she filed for divorce from Russell. The divorce was finalized in January 2009.

In the summer of 2008, Simmons and Hounsou participated in a traditional Benin commitment ceremony, and in May 2009, their son Kenzo Lee Hounsou was born. Simmons and Hounsou, who were never legally married in the United States, announced their separation in November 2012.

She established the Kimora Lee Simmons Scholarship Fund at her high school alma mater in St. Louis to provide college tuition support for academically successful girls with financial needs and is an active member of youth advocacy organizations including Amfar, The G&P Foundation, Keep a Child Alive, Hetrick-Martin Institute and Rush Philanthropic where she is on the Board of Directors. The mayor of St. Louis presented Simmons the key to the city and named March 18, 2008 "Kimora Day" in St. Louis.

Websites & Social Networks


  • 1993      For Love or Money        
  • 1999      The Big Tease   
  • 2002      Brown Sugar                     
  • 2005      Beauty Shop
  • 2005      Rebound                            
  • 2006      Waist Deep       


  • 2001               For Your Love   
  • 2007–11          Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane
  • 2013–present   Kimora: House of Fab



Baby Phat , Baby Phat 'Goddess' fragrance , Baby Phat 'Golden Goddess' fragrance , Chanel , Kimora 'Baby Phat Fabulosity' fragrance

Magazine Covers:

  • Malaysia: 'Harper's Bazaar' - December 2011
  • Singapore: 'Harper's Bazaar' - January 2012
  • US: 'Fit Pregnancy'; 'Ebony' - September 2007; 'Ebony' - February 2010; 'Los Angeles Confidential' - May 2010; 'Alive' - March 2013

Fashion Shows:

  • Ready to wear - Spring/Summer 1991 {Geoffrey Beene}
  • Haute Couture - Autumn/Winter 1991 {Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent}
  • Ready to wear - Spring/Summer 2006 {Baby Phat}
  • Ready to wear - Autumn/Winter 2007 {Baby Phat}