Maggie Rizer

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Maggie Rizer
Born Margaret Mary Rizer
(1978-01-09) January 9, 1978 (age 36)
Staten Island, New York, U.S.[1]
Modeling information
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Hair color Blonde (natural)
Eye color Blue
Dress size 4

Maggie Rizer (born January 9, 1978, Staten Island, New York) is an American model, actress, and AIDS activist. She is also an ambassador for Operation Smile.

Personal life[edit]

Margaret Mary Rizer was born to Maureen and Kevin Rizer. Her parents divorced before she was a year old when her father announced he was gay. A decade later her mother remarried, to John Breen. Her extended family includes four siblings: Julia, Patricia, Katie, and Jake. The family, who lives in upstate New York, appeared in a 2001 Teen Vogue layout.

Rizer married American businessman Alex Mehran on September 18, 2010 in Lake Placid, New York.[2] On November 23, 2011, she gave birth to her first child, a son, Zander.[3] The following year, Rizer announced she was expecting another son in 2013[4] and Quinnlann Clancy was born on March 15, 2013.[5]

Modeling career[edit]

Her high school graduation portrait was hung in Burns Photography studio and in the local mall. Neighbors saw the photo and encouraged the girl's mother to send the photo to the Ford Modeling Agency in New York City. Rizer's pale skin, covered in freckles, and her bright blue eyes caught the modeling world's attention. Rizer initially turned down modeling offers to continue her studies at the State University of New York at Geneseo and the Rochester Institute of Technology. Her hair is naturally strawberry blonde, which she dyed red to attract the attention of Italian Vogue and photographer Steven Meisel. They booked her for her first cover and 20-page couture layout in September 1997. She was also featured on the April 1999 cover of American Vogue with Kate Moss. Her second American Vogue cover was in November 2000 with models Carmen Kass, Angela Lindvall, and Frankie Rayder. The same year she was up for the 2000 VH1/Vogue "Model of the Year" award. Carmen Kass was the eventual winner. She has appeared in many fashion spreads and on the covers of dozens of fashion magazines including Elle', Lucky, Vogue, and Flare.[citation needed]

She was at the peak of her modeling career in the late 1990s and early 2000s. She has done limited film and television work, appearing briefly in an episode ("Let There Be Light") of Sex and the City (in Season Six). She appeared in a scene (later deleted) from Zoolander, again as a model, who asks Ben Stiller's title character (Derek Zoolander) to "come and join our sex party!"

Loss of modeling fortune[edit]

Maggie earned around $20,000 per fashion show and her day-rate started at $30,000. She reportedly amassed a fortune of $7 million in only five years.[6] At age 20, Rizer and her mother hired a New York City financial manager to handle her money in exchange for five percent of her earnings. Weeks later, her stepfather John Breen, who was in the insurance industry, told her that this was a waste of money and that he wanted to handle all of her finances. Breen had a serious drinking problem, however. The family would assume he was at work as he worked for himself at a small local insurance agency. According to him, after he lost his savings, he turned to Rizer's money and sometimes lost over $60,000 of it per day. No one but John was aware of these losses.[citation needed]

Maureen Brennan forced her husband into alcohol rehab and while he was gone, she came across receipts, documents, and forged checks in his trashcan at his office. She slowly unraveled the details of his addiction and discovered that Breen had gambled away all of Maggie's modeling income and the money Maggie had inherited upon the death of her biological father, Kevin, from AIDS in 1992. In 2004, her stepfather was convicted of grand larceny and conspiracy to defraud and was sentenced to sixteen to forty-eight months in prison. The family was left with no money. Ford, and then her new modeling agency, IMG, encouraged Rizer to seek therapy. Rizer mostly dropped out of modeling for the next five years. In consequence, Maureen Brennan briefly went on public assistance to support her family.[7] A long article, detailing Rizer's rise-and-fall, was in New York Magazine and online (April, May 2005).

AIDS activism[edit]

Rizer was fourteen when her openly gay father Kevin Rizer died of AIDS, and she has since become involved in AIDS awareness. As an adult, she spoke with Scott, her father's partner of ten years about how many friends her father had lost to the disease.

Modeling comeback[edit]

People Magazine, in its December 15, 2008 issue, ran a story about Rizer's attempts at a modeling comeback. In the Fall of 2009, Rizer began appearing in advertisements for Dooney and Bourke. In the spring of 2010, she has been featured prominently on the website for the L.L.Bean SIGNATURE line and in the print catalog. Maggie Rizer is presently represented by Trump Legends, a division of Trump Model Management, NYC.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Birthplace in Staten Island as per profile at www.fashionmodeldirectory.com
  2. ^ "Stepdaddy's Little Girl", by Kate Pickert New York Magazine April 11, 2005. [1]
  3. ^ "And It's……A Baby! ... Bea Makes Three", November 23, 2011.
  4. ^ "Maggie Rizer announces she is expecting her second son"
  5. ^ "Model Maggie Rizer Welcomes Baby No. 2!". 
  6. ^ "Maggie Rizer, Broke Supermodel, How the Lotto Ruined Her Life" by Kate Pickert, New York Magazine, May 21, 2005.
  7. ^ "Maggie Rizer, Broke Supermodel, How the Lotto Ruined her Life", ibid.