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Chris Gay

Co-CEO, Elite Model World

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The BoF 500 is the definitive professional index of the people shaping the $2.4 trillion fashion industry, hand-selected by the editors of The Business of Fashion, based on hundreds of nominations received from current BoF 500 members, extensive data analysis and research.


As one of the biggest names in the modelling industry today, Chris Gay is the co-chief executive officer of Elite Model World, who previously headed up The Society Management. Over the past two decades, Gay has worked with and managed the careers of some of the industry's biggest models, ranging from established models Adriana Lima, Liu Wen , Naomi Campbell and Erin Heatherton to newer faces Nathan Westling, Willow Smith and Ruth Bell .

Originally wanting to be a sports agent, Gay chose a different path and started working in the modelling business whilst in college. After completing his education in Boston, Gay ended up in New York in 1996, where he started working at Next Model Management, where he worked with model Malgosia Bela as his first client.

Four years later, he went on to work for DNA Model Management, where he worked with models such as Natalia Vodianova , Eugenia Volodina, Karolina Kurková and Karen Elson . At DNA, he had a successful tenure in a time where designers were starting to use multiple new models every season, resulting in busy time for Gay.

In 2008, he started working for Paris-based Marilyn Model Agency, which he left in June 2013. Gay later became the president of the Society Management, which is part of Elite Europe, and the executive director of North American Operations at Elite World Group.

As of December 2016, Gay became the co-chief executive of Elite Model World.

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