Check out our interview with Fashion Model Ruth Orevba.
Follow Ruth @ruthorevba
Please tell us a little about you?
I am Ruth Orevba, Nigerian American, born in London, England to Nigerian diplomates. I lived my young childhood in Abuja, Nigeria. I graduated with honors from the University of Maryland with my bachelors in communications studies. From a young age I always knew I wanted a career in fashion. I spent my young years designing clothing out of my mother’s old bedsheets and would always be the first to reach for a Vogue magazine at the nail salon. From competing in pageants at the state and national level, and walking in New York City fashion week shows I knew my life was destined in the fashion world. I live in NYC, I am a fashion model and work full time as a retail executive in the corporate fashion world.
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Resilient, altruistic, and determined
Name one of your strengths?
Perseverance, despite all the hardships in my life I will always continue to strive for my goals.
Who is your biggest supporter?
My mother sounds cheesy but she has been there for me through thick and thin and will always continue to be my biggest fan cheering me on.
Best advice ever given?
I remember a statement my people leader told me when I was working in fashion e-commerce “I can’t help you thrive if you don’t speak up”. I’m not sure why that resonated with me but from then on I always spoke my mind and didn’t let things dwell any longer to the point where I closed myself off.
Who has made the biggest impact on your life so far, and why?
I would say my boss I had when I was working in fashion e-commerce was such amazing
support. She was a great manager and would always lead in me in the right direction. She gave me the tools I needed to help me propel to higher roles in the Retail industry. I always say great bosses are leaders. They know how to lead others and they are there to help not direct.
When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?
I always thought I would be a fashion designer of the sort. I remember as a child I would make dresses out of my mother’s old bedsheets and then put on a fashion show for my family. I am not the best sower so I’m glad I ended up as a retail executive and I am still able to stunt on the runway as a fashion model in New York.
What has been the greatest pinch-me moment in your career?
When I got the call I was getting hired for a fortune 500 retail company. It has always been a dream of mine to work in retail. Growing up watching shows like Sex in the city and Friends, seeing Rachel as a buyer for Barneys in New York City I always dreamt for the time I would pack my bags and move to the big apple.
What did you learn from your biggest failure?
There was a moment in my career I bombed my first ever big presentation. I was presenting to the VP’s of my company a project I had been working on and instead of implementing the feedback my people leader gave me I thought my idea was better and that she was just feeding me criticism.
Unfortunately, she was correct seeing that she has had over 20+ years in the field and knew exactly what the VP’s would like to see. After that I always took in feedback and never took anything personally. Feedback is crucial in the corporate world as it only makes your work better especially taken from people who are heavily experienced in the field and only want to see you succeed.
What current projects do you have that you are currently working on?
As we all know our current climate is polarized and we want to make sure the fashion industry is a reflection out of diverse customer base. Re-looking at our marketing strategies and ensuring we are inclusive of brands that represent our Black and Hispanic communities.
What’s your favorite quote?
“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”
― Coco Chanel
In my experience in the corporate fashion industry, I’ve been told by my mentors to always speak up otherwise people will not know what you’re thinking.
To what do you attribute your current success?
I attribute my success to bring patient and not letting difficult obstacles throw me of course. I have been through many hardships in my life and I not once let it slide track me from my goals. With everything going on in the world with covid-19, the economy, and this polarization I lost a parent and it was a difficult time in my life. I thank my family and friends who helped me through such a hard time.
In addition, I would say the wonderful network I have grew through my time in the fashion industry. I have always had a motto of being kind and courteous to others because you never know who you may meet that will end up being your boss one day.
What is your favorite healthy food?
And your favorites cheat food?
Milk chocolate! I am a sucker for chocolate desserts
What do you think of Social Media?
Social media has always been a double-edge source. Positive in the way that you are able to reach hundreds and millions of people by 1 tweet or photo you post. It has also made it incredibly accessible to talk to your loved ones from all over the globe by using what’s app or Facebook messenger. On the flip side, it can be a negative as false information spreads and it gets hard differentiating between what is real and what is false. In addition, cyber bullying has become more prominent in this new digital era that although you can send funny memes to your friend’s people have used social media to harass others and it comes at high cost of pushing someone to commit suicide or putting them in a bad mental health space.
Where our readers can follow you?
@ruthorevba on IG!