The 10 MORE/Wilhelmina 40+ Model Search Finalists for 2006

Meet the model search finalists: these women are fabulous at forty-plus.
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Stephanie Allen, 54

Occupation: Executive Vice President of Creative Advertising and New Media at a major film company; part-time artist

Hometown: Santa Monica, California

"I think the most important thing for me is that I feel great about being over 50, and I feel like I’d love to share that with other women."

Steffi Jo Chapin, 42

Occupation: Doctor of Optometry

Hometown: Terra Ceia, Florida

"I love my dogs and my animals. I live on a farm, so we have a lot of animals here. As long as I can care for them, I’ll always have pets."

Victoria Gardner-Smith, 41

Occupation: Artist/Actress

Hometown: Portland, Oregon

"My mom has always kept me level-headed, and I admire her ethics and her own inner beauty. No matter what happens to me — good or bad — she’s like my rock."

Michele Y. Griffith Hilliard, 41

Occupation: Physician/Internal Medicine Hospitalist

Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina

"I know that if I’m blessed to see another day, there’s always the opportunity to change things, and to really maximize the good times."

Pamela Leitzell, 56

Occupation: Psychotherapist; partner in a software company developing neuropsychological assessments and rehab modules

Hometown: Houston, Texas

"Once you reach 50, you start wanting to face new challenges, and you develop a certain amount of self-confidence. It’s really fun being past 50 — I feel more alive than I ever did before."

Ursula Liebowitz-Johnson, 42

Occupation: Director of Essex County Rape Care Center, Essex, New Jersey

Hometown: Plainfield, New Jersey

"I think it’s so funny that we’re celebrating ‘over 40’ like we’re 90 years old. Forty is not that old! They always want women to age gracefully — do they say that to men? No!"

Melissa Moore, 43

Occupation: Trains American saddle-bred show horses for clients from all over the world; has won 50 world championships.

Hometown: Versailles, Kentucky

"No matter what my age, I will never give up my horses. My favorite quote from Winston Churchill is, ‘The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man or woman.’ That’s something that means the world to me."

Patricia Neville, 50

Occupation: Has worked as a sales manager for a clothing company and as director ofdevelopment for a women’s shelter; is now pursuing a modeling career full-time

Hometown: Miami, Florida

"I always had [modeling] in the back of my mind. I thought, maybe someday when I get my children raised, I’ll have an opportunity to follow my dream. MORE magazine inspired me to do that. I said, I’m not getting any younger and each day is a gift, and I had better start living life the way I want to."

Paula O’Connor, 41

Occupation: Oncologist

Hometown: San Francisco, California

"You live your life every single day, and you get something from not only the successes, but also the challenges and the perceived failures. I think that you get something from every experience that you have, so the more experiences you have, the better."

Lisa Robinson, 42

Occupation: CEO of Corporate Image, a promotional merchandise company she started 10 years ago, with offices in Chicago and North Carolina

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois

"I’m pretty much a really big kid: I think life’s all about having fun. I work hard to play hard."

Originally published on MORE.com, February 2007.

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