Sofia Vergara, the widely-known Colombian actress, was born in 1972 in Barranquilla, Colombia. Since then she has grown to become an internationally recognized actress and model, knocking down cultural barriers and stereotypes in America.
Vergara came began her career as a model after having been discovered by a fashion photographer while she was still in her teens. This fortuitous encounter led to various modeling jobs and television soon followed. When She was 20, Vergara began hosting a travel show (Fuera de Serie or Out of the Ordinary in English) that was broadcast all over Latin America as well as the United States.
This exposure gave her the opportunity to leave Colombia and begin working in the United States for a Spanish language network. Immediately she was co-hosting the Spanish-language show A Que no te Atreves (You wouldn’t Dare). At the beginning of the new millennium, Sofia Vergara’s star definitively began to shine. Slowly incorporating herself into English-language television, she began to receive small roles on shows like Entourage, Hot Properties and The Knights of Prosperity.
At the same time, she was starting to break into the movies with appearances in Chasing Papi and Four Brothers. With her career at full speed, Sofia continued to impress and take on new challenges like Broadway when she played the part of Mama Morton in the enormously popular musical Chicago. This year would also be her breakout year. In 2009, the American television network, ABC, was preparing a new show that would show the lifestyles and relationships of a “typical” American family in mockumentary style (where the characters break the “4th wall” by talking directly to the camera). Keeping in line with the theme of the show which exposes contemporary American family life, Sofia Vergara was offered the role of a young Hispanic single mother married to an older divorced Caucasian father played by Ed O’Neil.
This comedic combination, in addition to the excellent ensemble cast, has turned this show into one the seminal sitcoms of the decade. Thanks to the popularity of this show and its army of followers, Vergara has become an actress of reference both inside and outside of Hollywood. Her performance in Modern Family has not gone unnoticed and Vergara has been rewarded with various Emmy nominations.
Not content with taking the acting world by storm, this famous Colombian actress continues to be a respected fashion model who has appeared on the covers of some of the most widely respected magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Vanity Fair. Vergara has also dipped her toe into the world of fashion design by creating a clothing line for Kmart, one of the US’s largest retail chains, which aims to be affordable and wearable for women of all shapes and sizes. As a clothes designer, she has said that fashion “… is all about knowing how to dress your body and what looks good on you”.
Vergara is often seen on the red carpet in clothes of the respected Filipino designer Michael Cinco, who also boasts a list of clients like Lady Gaga and Chris Brown. Although she is a multi-faceted Hollywood star with a non-stop schedule, Vergara has also dedicated time to helping the less fortunate by actively participating in many philanthropic causes. The Modern Family star co-chairs the star-studded gala BeLive which raises funds for Columbian non-profit groups. She has also participated in the campaign for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis to raise money for treatment and research into cancers which affect children.
Vergara, who suffered from Cancer herself when she was 28, was quoted as saying “it (cancer) brought me down to earth and to realize the important things”. It seems that Vergara’s contributions to her charity campaigns have made a difference and she is an example how success, when employed selflessly, can benefit many people in need.
Described as ‘one of the most powerful and talented women in Hispanic entertainment’, Vergara’s career both on and off set has gone from strength to strength and she remains one of the best-known actresses from the Hispanic world. As her impressive resume continues to expand, Sofia Vergara is an example not just for Hispanic women but she is an example for everyone to follow.