Newark, NJ (CNS) – Naomi Sims, one of the world’s first black supermodels and a pioneer in the industry, has died at 61. The former model died after a long fight with breast cancer. Her family confirmed that Sims passed away on Saturday in Newark, New Jersey.
Sims broke into the fashion industry in 1967 and became an icon of the “Black is Beautiful” movement after appearing on the cover of Ladies’ Home Journal in November of 1968. She later appeared on the covers of Time, Cosmopolitan, McCall’s, Life and several others.
Sims quit the industry in 1973, married and gave birth to a son, Robert. In 1976, she launched a successful wig collection targeted mainly for black women. In 1986, she then launched a cosmetics line. During her life, she also wrote several books offering beauty, health and career advice for African-American women.