Born in 1957, Russell Wendell Simmons is a business tycoon from the United States of America – known for Def Jam (hip hop music brand); and Phat Farm, American Classics and Argyleculture (apparel lines). In the world of hip hop, Simmons has been labeled as the 3rd richest individual with a net worth of around 340 million dollars in the year 2011.
Simmons grew up in New York’s borough, Queens. His mother was an administrator of a park and father held the similar position in a public school. He has two siblings, Rey Run and Daniel Simmons Junior. After attaining his graduation in 1975 from August Martin High School, he attended City College of New York for a short while.
In 1985, Simmons appeared in and co-produced Krush Groove, a film. Rush Communications, Inc., his company is branched out into many different fields including a film production house, his clothing line, television shows, advertising agency and a magazine. It is the largest American African media company in USA.
In 2000, although he established the internet business known as 360 Hip Hop, he sold the venture to BET. A decade later, a television reality show by the title Running Russell Simmons featured the magnate as a star. Moving on, he also owns the majority shares at Global Grind website.
In 1992, he met Kimora Lee, a seventeen year old model. After dating for four years, they married in 1998 on Saint Barthélemy island. They have two kids named, Aokee Lee and Ming Lee and the family lived in New Jersey. However four years after Aoki was born, in 2006 the couple divorced.
Moving on, Simmons has been a vegetarian since he got married and thus advocates the implementation of practicing veganism and Ahimsa. He supports Farm Sanctuary, a society that works to end the brutality inflicted on farm kept animals. In fact, he received awards for his humanitarian efforts by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals in 2001 and 2011.
He is associated with many organizations, such as Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, United Nations Slavery Memorial, and Somaly Mam Foundation. Moreover, he is also a supporter of the rights of gay people and their marriage. In addition to this, he endorsed conferences as well took part in protests.
Moving on, Simmons stated once in an interview that he does not practice Buddhism but he is a Yoga practitioner and prays to the Ātman (self), a method known as Jivamukti Yoga, encourages environmental, social and vegetarianism activism. Additionally, he practices Transcendental Meditation and supports David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace. Furthermore, Simmons co-wrote and published books in 2007 and 2011.
Although Russell Simmons has no formal education about fashion, he sure is interested in the field and invests in this business. His fashion ranges not only cater to people fond of high street fashion, but his target market include individuals that are keen on quality and sophistication as well as trendiness. Phat Farm, a menswear line owned by Simmons started off in a small showroom in New York City and is now a multi- million dollar company. It is a contemporary label for men’s clothing, where as Baby Phat is an array of fashion merchandise for females and produces apparel and accessories. After these fashion ventures, the entrepreneur re-launched a brand named Argyleculture with Joseph Abboud, since the last two collaborations for the same label failed. In addition to these collections, Simmons also established American Classics, which is an American lifestyle trademark.