HANNE GABY ODIELE
INTERSEX ACTIVIST AND MODEL.
In January of 2017, Hanne Gaby Odiele made the boldest statement to date as a fashion model, by disclosing being born intersex and subsequently becoming an activist for intersex rights across the globe. By being the first public figure to come out as intersex, and through her partnership with interACT Advocates, Hanne now adds activism to a list of accomplishments in a career that spans over 12 years in the fashion business.
Hanne was born and raised in Kortrijk, Belgium, where at a young age she underwent invasive medical procedures due to misinformation from medical professionals and a fundamental lack of sensitivity to intersex children. However, things would change in 2005, when she was discovered at a musical festival in Belgium, and asked to model. From there, Hanne made her debut in September 2005, at the Marc by Marc Jacobs Spring 2006 show. Hanne was an instant success, and rapidly reached the heights of the fashion industry. Models.com ranks her amongst their “Industry Icons.”
She consistently works with the industry’s most talented photographers and most-noted designers, and in July 2016 Hanne married John Swiatek in upstate New York. They currently reside in NYC.
“1.7 percent of the population is considered intersex, which is when you’re born with sex characteristics that don’t really define the typical definition of male and female.”–HANNE GABY ODIELE