Alison Stephens was born on May 10, 1991, in San Clemente, California. After stops in Indiana, Florida and Ohio, she eventually settled in Salt Lake City. The fashion world wasn’t high on her priority list, but an eventful shopping trip in 2007 led to her “discovery” (the same way Gisele Bundchen was discovered) by a representative of fashion agency Pulse Management.
Five months later, Ali Stephens had submitted pictures to Elite Model Management in New York, the same agency that represents Coco Rocha, and they gave her a contract. Her runway debut came in September as a Prada model in Milan. The powers of the industry liked what they saw and, within a month, Stephens had starred as an opener for Chloe and was a featured runway model for Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Nina Ricci, and Miu Miu. By the end of the year, Ali Stephens was fast becoming a name, and that was further enhanced by feature recognition from Hintmag.com, Pop and Style.com, who all coined her as a rising talent. Vmagazine.com got into the mix in December of 2007 by naming her as Spring 2008’s No. 2 model.
In 2008, Ali Stephens took over for Anja Rubik and Shalom Harlow as the face of Chloe and assumed similar roles for M Missoni and Gap. She was featured in a Prada Sport shoot alongside Heidi Mount and Sasha Pivovarova and landed a contract with Chanel’s cosmetics division. Some of Stephens’ greatest 2008 moments came from Calvin Klein. She opened the company’s fall show during her New York Fashion Week debut and modeled in place of Raquel Zimmermann for ck Calvin Klein. Stephens’ place as a hot Calvin Klein’s commodity was sealed when she appeared on a towering Manhattan billboard for the company.
Ali Stephens also made print waves with a variety of magazine features in 2008. T Style, Vogue (French, British, Japanese, and Italian) and Harper’s Bazaar were among those that photographed her for editorial content, while New York Look gave her the moniker “This Year’s Girl.” Stephens also landed her first magazine cover for W (Korea) and fulfilled the same duty for Muse.
Ali Stephens continued to ride the wave of her industry success across more magazines and runway shows. She gained not one, but two cover shots for two issues of French Revue de Modes (one in 2008, one in 2009), netted a prime editorial spread for Vogue (Chinese) and landed an additional cover shot for the March 2009 issue of Numero.
On the runway, Ali Stephens hasn’t slowed one bit. After opening Oscar de la Renta’s pre-fall New York City show, she split her time between the Big Apple, Paris and Milan while walking glitzy shows for over 20 top designers, like Donna Karan, Valentino, Marc Jacobs, D&G, Fendi, Lanvin, and Alexander Wang.