LAUREN FOSTER

Model. Advocate. Actress. Author. Real Housewives of Miami. Joseph Lally Films. VOGUE Model. GLAAD Ally. 

MEDIA/FILM

Foster grew up in the colonial city of Durban, South Africa. Through her early years and puberty, she identified as female and was diagnosed with Klinefelter's syndrome, where, instead of having the traditional XY chromosome pattern, she had the genotype XXY. With the love and support of her family, Lauren  began transitioning in her teens. By seventeen, she was receiving hormone therapy, living full-time as a female. Foster's parents were supportive and empathetic, paying for her gender confirming surgery, at the age of 18.

Foster began an active social life as a woman, taking care to conceal her past. A childhood friend remembers, "At this time, I never saw anyone as much a project under construction as Lauren. One usually does that type of evolution on the wings of our personalities, but with Lauren you could almost see the plumbing and the wires as she transitioned in full view, like a chrysalis. She transformed herself and found untold success in her new role. Once her career took her to Europe, she never looked back." 

She worked extensively as a model in Europe, South America and the USA, appearing in top magazines such as VOGUE (Mexico). A tabloid journalist contacted her, revealing he had discovered her past, and planned to write about it. Other journalists researched her past, attempting to interview her family members and friends. She gave an interview, on the advice of an agent, thinking it would be better if she took control of the story. The story was picked up by Reuters. Tabloids like BUNTE, GLOBE and other international press ran the story, "REVEALED; VOGUE MODEL WAS A MAN!". 

Described by her friend, Warhol Superstar Holly Woodlawn, as the "It Girl for the Trans community", her world in the early 80's was the glittering mosaic of New York's downtown scene. Her liaisons with rockstars, royalty, international politicians and as a confidante to other rich and infamous were tabloid fodder. She was a regular at Studio 54 on the East Coast and the Playboy Mansion on the West. "Whether she's partying at Hugh Hefner's Mansion, stuck in a lift with Grace Jones or modeling minks for Hollywood wives, she remains a Goddess of the radiant night." - London Sunday Times. 

She studied at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute, under the tutelage of Sally Kirkland and Mark Marno. For over a decade, Foster played the heavy for Jeffrey Sanker, the most powerful promoter in the underground party circuit. In 2000 she began working with the iconic performer, Grace Jones. In 2001 Foster appeared in a cameo, in Dirk Shafer's eponymous movie "Circuit", which explores the dark side of the underground party scene.

PHOTOS

 

 

She lives in Miami Beach and Cape Town. She is still modeling, recently appearing in a five-page editorial exclusive for XEX magazine in March 2016. She was photographed with trans rocker Alex Davis, by celebrity imagist Greg Gorman. She is the first transgender woman to be featured regularly on The Real Housewives franchise (Real Housewives of Miami - Seasons 2 & 3). She filmed three biopics with filmmaker Joseph Lally, "FACES", "MISS AMERICA COMMITS SUICIDE", and most recently "INTERNATIONAL STAR" for SHOWstudio/Nick Knight. Not just a pretty face, she had a successful career as PR Director at the prestigious MIAMI Institute for Age Management and Intervention, in the Four Seasons Hotel from 2003-2014. She began working with GLAAD in 2011 and launched the GLAAD Miami Leadership Council, with Omar Sharif Jr and fellow Miami Housewife Marysol Patton.  She currently serves as LGBTQ Director at the University of Miami Hospital, working with Dr Christopher Salgado and his trans patients.

Her provocative story is inspirational and still very much a life in progress. Her journey is an example for anyone facing, or working to solve, gender identity issues. She feels that her experience has been blessed, in large part by the unquestioned support and love from her family and close friends. 

Foster is currently working on her memoir, "Just Another Girl". To read a teaser excerpt, click here.  
 

 

To read more about Lauren:

Joseph Lally is a filmmaker/photographer/writer alive and living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

His films THE MURDER OF JEAN SEBERG and THE BLACK AND WHITE MAZE OF THE PAINTED ZEBRA

have been shown at the Pompidou Center in Paris and at Art Basel in Miami, among other film

festivals. His two published books are THE INFRARED SUMMER and The 421 Transmissions. he is currently at work onThe Delicate Thread, A Novel