Danielle Herrington has reached what many consider to be the pinnacle of the modeling business:
She has been named the 2018 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover girl.
And it’s pretty easy to see why…
Herrington is only the third African-American woman to grace the front of the legendary issue, something she touched on in a statement released shortly after the above photo went public.
“Two of my role models are Tyra Banks and Beyonce, so the fact that I get to join this incredible group of women as I become the third black model on the cover of SI Swimsuit is a dream come true,” Herrington says, adding:
“I am so excited to be part of this iconic brand that has long given identity and voice to women of all shapes, colors and beliefs.
“I hope that young girls who look at this cover are inspired to dream as big as I did and work hard to attain all their goals.”
Harrington posed for this issue for the very first time just a year ago.
She went from being a 2017 rookie to the star of the 2018 edition.
And she said previously that this was the path she always dreamed about, she just didn’t know if it was realistic.
In a 2017 interview with Fox News, Herrington talked about how she aspired to be just like Banks, who appears on probably the most iconic cover in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit history.
“I just remember Tyra Banks being on the cover and that’s where it all started for me,” Danielle said.
“That’s what really made me pursue modeling. SI was a goal from that point, from seeing Tyra on the cover. It was love at first sight… everything happened naturally.”
What else is worth noting about Danielle Herrington?
She’s 24 years old.
She grew up in Compton, California.
She majored in Psychology and would have been a child psychiatrist if she had not become a model.
Sports Illustrated is the first magazine she has EVER posed for.
“I am beyond speechless,” she wrote on Instagram after this cover was revealed.
“I dedicate this to all the young girls out there. Work hard, surround yourself with good people who believe in you and YOUR DREAMS WILL COME TRUE.”
For this cover shot, Herrington was shot by photographer Ben Watts in Harbour Island, Bahamas.
“Last year, Danielle was a rookie, and yet already an exemplary model,” said SI Swimsuit Editor MJ Day, gushing in more detail:
“She’s an extra hard worker and a natural brand ambassador. All those things separately don’t guarantee a cover, though. Danielle was a shy girl, who went from taking her first photos last year to showing up this year a completely different person.
“All the good things about her seemed to be magnified.
“She owned every single second of her shoot. She had an enthusiasm and effervescence about her – I felt like I was meeting her for the first time.
“Last year she showed up never expecting to be there; this year she showed up completely claiming her place and status as a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model.”