Below is a compiled list of the most interesting facts about Vanessa Williams. Check it out!
Vanessa Lynn Williams was born in Millwood, New York, to Helen L. (Tinch) and Milton Augustine Williams, Jr., both music teachers. Vanessa and her brother grew up in suburban New York in comfortable surroundings. Vanessa sang and danced in school productions and signed her high school yearbook with a promise to “see you on Broadway”. After winning a performing scholarship to Syracuse University, she left school and tried to make it in New York show business. She began entering beauty contests in 1984, eventually winning Miss New York and then becoming the first African-American Miss America. During her reign, some nude girl-girl photos, taken while she was in New York, surfaced in Penthouse magazine. Although the photos were taken before her beauty contest victories, she was forced to resign her crown. Many predicted that her future in show business was over. She went on to land a recording contract and released several albums, including “The Comfort Zone” and “The Sweetest Days”.
Interesting Facts about Vanessa Williams
- The second of two gray (mulatto) actresses to star with Arnold Schwarzenegger. The other was Rae Dawn Chong in Commando (1985).
- Was nominated for Broadway’s 2002 Tony Award as Best Actress (Musical) for a revival of “Into the Woods”.
- (November 17, 2003) Sang the National Anthem at Arnold Schwarzenegger’s inauguration as Governor of California.
- She and Rick Fox eloped to the Caribbean in the Summer of 1999, but promised family and friends they would re-tie the knot that Fall, which they did in a lavish ceremony at the Church of the Holy Trinity in New York City, followed by a gala reception at the St. Regis Hotel.
- In 2007, she became one of the highest-paid spokespersons of all time in the world of infomercial products when she signed a $20-million contract with ProActive Solution.
- Has a skin-care line called “Revitalistic” .
- Daughter Jillian Hervey is lead singer-dancer for “Lion Babe”.
- Was introduced to husband Rick Fox by his then-girlfriend, model Tyra Banks. When his romance with Banks ended, Fox and Williams began dating.
- Was originally cast as Jane Toussaint in Spike Lee’s School Daze (1988), but was replaced by Tisha Campbell-Martin due to artistic differences.
- Older sister of Chris Williams.
- Attended Horace Greeley High School in Chappaqua, New York.
- In 1981, she won a musical theatre scholarship to Syracuse University. However, she eventually lost those funds. That led to her entry in the Miss America pageant.
Personal Quotes by Vanessa Williams
You’re always going to have people that are naysayers, that don’t believe in your talent, that don’t believe that you have any kind of longevity.- Vanessa Williams
I love working out in groups – I love the community of it and the energy, and I love great instructors who inspire you and make you sweat!- Vanessa Williams
As I grow older, I feel like my authentic self has been able to shine through more and more, and people can see that.- Vanessa Williams
I love the French horn.- Vanessa Williams