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Jennifer Hawkins (born 22 December 1983) is an Australian beauty queen, model and television presenter best known for being crowned Miss Universe Australia and later the same year Miss Universe 2004 in Quito, Ecuador. She is currently the face of Australian department store Myer.

Early life[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Hawkins was born in Holmesville, New South Wales, and currently resides in Sydney. She attended West Wallsend High School in West Wallsend, New South Wales. She is one of four children. Hawkins was a former cheerleader for the Newcastle Knights rugby league team, and the Hunter Pirates basketball team and also worked as a model. It was as a model that she was cast as Miss Australia for the Miss Universe competition. Hawkins also worked as a choreographer for a dance team that toured Australia specialising in Hip-Hop and Ballet.

Career[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Miss Universe[edit source | editbeta]Edit

After dropping out of high school Hawkins went on to be a model. Before participating in Miss Universe 2004 Hawkins sought advice from the previous Miss Australia, Ashlea Talbot, who represented Australia in the 2003 competition, and learned basic Spanish prior to travelling to Ecuador. However Hawkins did not participate as Miss Australia but as the newly instated pageant Miss Universe Australias first winner.

The Miss Universe pageant was held in Quito, Ecuador on 1 June 2004. A week prior to the event, Hawkins was ranked sixth favourite to win the crown. During the final competition, Hawkins became the first Australian to make the semi-finals since Voni Delfos in 1993. She then proceeded to the top ten after competing in the evening gown competition, where she wore an unusual vintage copper gown that was designed by Bora and cost A$25,000. After the swimsuit competition, Hawkins advanced to the top five, and eventually won the Miss Universe title. The remaining top five were all delegates from the Americas and Caribbean, including Shandi Finnessey of the USA (1st runner-up), Alba Reyes of Puerto Rico (2nd runner-up), Yanina Gonzalez of Paraguay (3rd runner-up) and Danielle Jones of Trinidad and Tobago (4th runner-up). Hawkins was the second winner from Oceania since Lorraine Downes of New Zealand held the title in 1983, and the second Australian since Kerry Anne Wells in 1972.

Hawkins was crowned by outgoing titleholder Amelia Vega from the Dominican Republic, after famously being announced by host Billy Bush as the "thunder from down under". Pageant co-owner Donald Trump described Hawkins as "the most beautiful Miss Universe I have seen in many, many years".

Hawkins received an elaborate Mikimoto pearl encrusted crown, worth $250,000 as well as an extensive prize package. Hawkins was the first blonde haired woman to win the title since Angela Visser of the Netherlands in 1989.

As Miss Universe, Hawkins represented the Miss Universe Organization. Her "sister" 2004 titleholders were Shelley Hennig (Miss Teen USA, of Louisiana) and Shandi Finnessey (Miss USA, of Missouri). During her reign, Hawkins travelled to Korea, The Bahamas, Brazil, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Singapore, Indonesia, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, India, Ecuador, Mexico, Puerto Rico, had multiple trips to Thailand, the host of Miss Universe 2005, and her home country of Australia. In Brazil, after an official meeting with Vice-President José Alencar, he said she was "the prettiest girl I have ever seen in my life". Also, she was the first Miss Universe ever to parade in a Samba School(as Eve) during brazilian carnival, in February 2005.

As part of her year-long reign as Miss Universe, she resided in New York City in a riverside apartment provided by the Miss Universe Organization. Also during her reign as Miss Universe, Hawkins stated that her wish was to continue modelling and become a television presenter.

Shortly after being crowned Miss Universe in 2004, Hawkins created news during a fashion show at Westfield Miranda, an Australian shopping centre, when she tripped on the hem of her dress, which fell to the floor. Hawkins was left scantily clad in her red g-string in front of a surprised crowd. Hawkins later apologised, laughingly adding she "wished she wore better underwear". The incident received the dubious distinction of being named "The most embarrassing moment ever shown on Australian television" by Australia's Nine Network. The "wardrobe malfunction" was widely circulated through news outlets and according to Google, caused a sharp increase in internet searches for "Jennifer Hawkins".

Hawkins served as a judge for the Miss Universe 2008 finals in Vietnam.

Television presenting[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Hawkins signed a contract with the Seven Network at the 2004 Melbourne Cup Carnival. Her first appearances were as a guest presenter on the network's travel show, The Great Outdoors, where she took viewers on tours throughout the world. When she ended her reign as Miss Universe, she became a regular presenter on the show, which resulted in a 2006 Logie nomination for Most Popular New Female Talent. No new episodes of the programme have been produced since 2009.

Hawkins also served as the host and one of the judges for Australia's Make Me a Supermodel, which debuted on the Seven Network in August 2008. The series aired for a single season.

Media outlets reported in October 2010 that Hawkins would depart Seven and move to the Nine Network after the expiration of her contract.

Hawkins is now the host for the hit TV show Australia's Next Top Model. She is replacing Sarah Murdoch. She works alongside Alex Perry, Charlotte Dawson and Didier Cohen.

Other[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Hawkins was one of the participants in the fourth season of Australia's Dancing with the Stars and was the fifth celebrity eliminated. On 15 February 2006 she was in a celebrity version of Deal or No Deal called Dancing with the Dealwhich featured celebrities from Dancing with the Stars. She won $2,000 after refusing every deal.

Hawkins is featured as the love interest of Australian artist, Guy Sebastian in the music video for the second single "Elevator Love" off his third album, Closer To The Sun.

She has made cameo appearances in multiple episodes of The Apprentice with Donald Trump. Hawkins turned down the role of Sophie Solandres in The Pink Panther 2 due to scheduling conflicts, which was eventually given to Former Miss World and Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai.

As a model she is represented by the Danish agency Bornmodels.

EndorsementsEdit

  • In September 2006, Hawkins signed a 3 year deal with Lovable Australia lingerie as its Australian "face".
  • In August 2006, she became ambassador for Grand Waterfront, a residential development in Hong Kong between Henderson Land Development and its associate the Hong Kong & China Gas Company. Full front page colour photographs of her have appeared as advertisements in several Chinese language newspapers; Minute-long advertisements for the development have been aired on primetime television in Hong Kong with Hawkins as the principal subject.
  • In 2006, Jennifer signed a lucrative endorsement deal to become the fourth Australian face of Covergirl makeup.
  • In November 2006, Hawkins endorsed a range of Asus laptops in Sydney, Australia, at which the company donated the proceeds of an EBay sale of a special edition pink S6 to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
  • In January 2007, it was announced that Hawkins had signed a deal with Australian Department Store Myer worth $4million (AUD).
  • In 9 August 2007, she was offered $50,000 to pose nude in the men's magazine, Zoo Magazine, which she declined.
  • On 6 January 2010, Hawkins appeared naked and unretouched on the February cover of Marie Claire Australia magazine to support the Butterfly Foundation and encourage positive attitudes to body image.

Public imageEdit

Following her successful public reception, Hawkins initially accepted Bathurst school student Daniel Dibley's invitation to accompany him to his Year 12 graduation ball in August 2006. She later declined because she did not wish to draw attention from the other couples. She did however agree to go with him on a private date.

Personal life[edit source | editbeta]Edit

On June 4, 2013; Jennifer tied the knot to her beau of eight years, Jake Wall. The couple were wed before an intimate gathering of about 50 friends and family overlooking the ocean at the cliff's-edge villa resort Semara, in the islands quiet area of Uluwatu; and the bride wore a meringue-style strapless dress by Melbourne-based designer, Toni Maticevski.

The couple met just prior to Hawkins winning the Miss Universe pageant and the two continued their relationship following her return to Australia after her year based in New York. Wall was in Torvill and Dean's Dancing on Ice. The Seven Network requested that she not attend the show, as Seven feared the Nine Network will capitalise on her presence, which may boost ratings for Nine.

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