The 45-year-old supermodel/TV personality/entrepreneur returns to the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, more than two decades after being the first black woman to grace the cover of the magazine alone in 1997.
SI editor MJ Day speaks highly of Tyra’s return to the cover, stating that the iconic model is an inspiration to women worldwide.
Tyra Banks is the epitome of what we hope for all the women who are a part of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit. What she has achieved so far in her career is extraordinary. She has parlayed a modeling career into phenomenal success that spans multiple industries and resonates with people on a global scale. She has refused to be singularly defined and is constantly working to inspire everyone within her reach.
PEOPLE reports that Banks came out of modeling retirement specifically for her 2019 SI Swimphoto shoot photographed in Great Exuma, Bahamas, by Laretta Houston.
“My first one was 23 years ago, how crazy is that,” an excited Banks said on Good Morning America where she revealed her new cover. “I’m like damn — I’m 45 dog!”
This marks the third SI Swimsuit cover for Banks, whose career was launched when she first starred on the cover of SI Swimsuit in 1996, with model Valeria Mazza, followed by a solo cover in 1997.
Banks made history as the first black woman to appear on the magazine’s cover alone in 1997.