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17 April 1969 |
|Occupation||Television presenter of The Biggest Loser, author, actress, comedian, speaker|
|Known for||The Biggest Loser|
Ajay Rochester (born in 1969 in Sydney) is an Australian actress and author. She was the host of the Australian version of reality weight-loss television series The Biggest Loser, for which she hosted a total of four series between 2006 and 2009.
Family and personal life
Rochester was adopted as a child, and states she was emotionally and physically abused by her adoptive mother. She located her birth mother in 1992 after years of searching. Her birth mother suicided a year later. Rochester has a son Kai, who was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome at the age of five. Rochester suffered from obesity, which she attributed to the death of her birth mother and her estrangement from her adoptive mother. She resolved to lose weight following the birth of her child, and shed over 50 kilograms since giving birth. She was engaged to British-born telecommunications manager Martin Gleave, but called off the wedding and ended the relationship in August 2007.
Weight loss work
Recording her weight loss after her son's birth, she filmed the documentary Larger Than Life which aired on The Lifestyle channel. It followed Rochester for a year as she lost weight and took back her life.
She founded a website, "The Healthy Body Club", and authored the books Confessions of a Reformed Dieter, Blubberguts and The Lazy Girl's Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Fit. Rochester also published a children's book called Blubberguts with Hodder Headline's Hotshots series.
Rochester has also published two more titles with new Holland including cookbook Food You Love and self-help inspirational book 5-Minute Diet Book.
Rochester joined a weight loss reality show as a celebrity contestant, Excess Baggage which was broadcast in January through March 2012. Rochester won the show and her charity the NOH8 Campaign received a $60,000 donation for her efforts. During Excess Baggage Rochester struggled with the physical/sport challenges but excelled when they implemented intellectual challenges, which Ajay attributed to being a super nerd at school, where she dodged doing sport by being the youngest and longest running editor of her school newspaper and yearbook.
After leaving Biggest Loser she gained some weight, and has admitted she used to starve herself to keep her presenting job.
She recently shot a few episodes of the Reality TV show Beverly Hills Pawn and has reappeared in their latest season (2014) which airs on The Reelz Channel, made an acting appearance on an episode of America's Court, and has filmed pilots for various shows including Beverly Hills Canine Country Club.
Rochester is currently filming a pilot for her own reality TV show and is working on a new book co-authoring with The USA Biggest Loser doctor, Dr Robert Huizenga.
She is currently Reality Wanted's Hollywood Host for all reality shows and covers all the biggest reality shows in Hollywood including Survivor and is currently the backstage reporter for So You Think You Can Dance on FOX.
Other television work
Rochester was recently one of the stars of the MyxTv television series "Cast Me" where four casting producers (Including Rochester) cast various roles for wannabe actors. One job in particular was for a role in the record breaking PC Game Squadron 42 Star Citizen (also starring Gillian Anderson and Mark Hamill) which made the Guinness Book of Records for having raised over 100 million dollars in crowd funding.
Rochester was also the co-host of the SBS TV series Mum's The Word.
Rochester was contracted to come to the USA to shoot Celebrity Fit Club but producers replaced her at the last minute due to a visa delay.
Rochester won the 2012 reality TV show Excess Baggage on Channel 9 Australia.
Rochester has a recurring role in the upcoming Reelz Channel series Beverly Hills Pawn and recently appeared on America's Court in a lead role.
Rochester is currently in discussions regarding the production of her own reality show.
Rochester is featured regularly on shows TMZ and CBS Insider and is often asked to comment on social media issues
Rochester has found recent success in Germany and appears regularly on RED TV - Germany's version of E!
Rochester is the ambassador for the Eating Disorders Foundation. She has worked with The Make A Wish Foundation and is an advocate for breast cancer research lending her time to multiple breast cancer charities including the Field of Women and BCNA. Rochester is also the face and ambassador for Triathlonpink.com and walked the Great Wall of China to raise funds to build the Olivia Newton-John Wellness Centre. Rochester is currently working on an anti bullying campaign which she plans to launch at the 2014 Stan Lee Comikaze Expo. She will be climbing Mt Kilimanjaro in June 2014 with Dr Huizenga from The Biggest Loser USA to promote heart health.
Short film work
In the late 1990s, Rochester also co-wrote and produced several short films while she was working the comedy circuits in Australia. Her 1998 film BruiZer won the best short at the Scenefest Short Film Festival and was the runner up at the Brisbane Schlock-fest Film festival. She also had a weekly comedy segment on AM Adelaide on Channel 7.
Early acting work
Rochester is a trained actress having graduated from The Australian Academy of Dramatic Arts.
Rochester started her career as an actress in the film Vicious. Her next film was The Crossing, which starred Russell Crowe. She acted under the name Lea-Ann Towler. She also appeared in PJ Hogan's movie Vicious.
She also appeared in the Mini Series Shadow of The Cobra - a story on the life of serial killer Charles Sobraj. She played one of his murder victims.
Rochester's first book Confessions of a Reformed Dieter was nominated for an Audie award for most inspirational talking book – bestowed annually in the USA for outstanding audiobooks but was beaten by Dr Phil's The Ultimate Weight Solution. Confessions of Reformed Dieter is now in its eighth print run. In 2005, Rochester's book Lazy Girl's Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Fit was published by Random House and made the Sydney Morning Herald top five best seller list. Her most recent books are The 5-Minute Diet Book and a recipe book called Food You Love. Rochester is now living and working in the USA and working on her latest books to be published there and is currently represented by literary agent Jennifer Unter from The Unter Agency in New York. Her next book, which she says will be her final weight loss book is titled Been There Done Fat.
Rochester is also working on a book about her son's autism called Coming to the Rescue. She has also written a children's book titled Blubberguts.
Confessions was also published in Thailand, UK, Canada and is about to be released by Random House UK as an E book available on iTunes and Kindle.
- Marcus, Caroline (13 May 2007). "How Kai helped Ajay become a big winner". The Sydney Morning Herald.
- Sydney Confidential (7 August 2007). "Biggest Loser host sheds her pal". The Daily Telegraph.
- "Profile: Ajay Rochester". The Biggest Loser. Network Ten. Archived from the original on 15 October 2008.
- Mendoza, Nadia (23 December 2011). "Excess Baggage". London: Daily Mail.
- "Celebrity Dog School: Ajay Rochester". Network Ten. Retrieved 2016-09-10.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 2009-10-01.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 19 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-01.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 7 February 2010. Retrieved 2009-10-01.
- "The Crossing". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2016-09-10.
- "After the heartache, a fresh appetite". Smh.com.au. 2003-05-17. Retrieved 2016-09-10.
- "The Lazy Girl's Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Fit". Girl.com.au. 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2016-09-10.
- "Index". Hha.com.au. Retrieved 2016-09-10.