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Join Date: Apr 2006
"She has developed into a superstar," said Jackson businessman and church member Henry Harrison, who is helping with the celebration. "Her talent and dedication have made her a highly successful personality." Hollis - her last name is her professional name, too - was enrolled in the church's "Music for Esteem" program when she was in elementary school. She studied piano and the musical arts under the direction of Harrison's wife Margaret for four years.
"She really enjoyed it, and I commend the church for offering such a program," said her mother, Francis Hollis Carroll. "It introduces children to different things and makes them well-rounded."
From "Music for Esteem," Hollis went on to acting in high school plays. She started modeling when she was 16, after her theater teacher, Becky Fly, introduced her to the Colors Agency in Memphis.
Among her first clients were Holliday's, Kmart and Target. Last year, she was featured in a billboard for Abercrombie & Fitch that was on display at Old Hickory Mall and throughout the country.
She has been on runways from New York to Paris and recently was on the cable television reality show "Project Runway" on the Bravo Network. She also was on the October 2006 cover of "Memphis," promoting the magazine's fall fashion preview.
"I am running errands and trying to catch my breath," she laughed when reached recently by telephone in New York, where she lives.
"I am excited the church wants to honor me," said Hollis, a 2002 graduate of Jackson Central-Merry High School.
But Hollis had a long weekend ahead of her last week before coming home to Jackson.
She was catching a flight for a fashion shoot in Miami for J.C. Penney. From there, it was on to Seattle for a Nordstrom assignment before flying back to New York and a shoot for Macy's.
"I should be home by midweek," she said late last week, "in time for the celebration."
Visit jacksonsun.com and share your thoughts. - Gwenda Anthony, 425-9631
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