The African-American multi-talented star Russell Simmons has made a name for himself not only as a record producer and author but also as an entrepreneur. He is famous as president and CEO of the popular communications company Rush Communications and as co-owner of the Def Jam Music label. Russell also owns well-known clothing brands such as Tantris, Phat Farm, and Argyleculture. He attracted a lot of attention in 2017 following his accusations of sexual assault. Read more about him and the multimillionaire below.
Who is Russell Simmons?
Russell Simmons is a renowned businessman and entrepreneur, as well as a record producer and celebrated author. Born to African-American parents Daniel Simmons Sr. and his wife Evelyn Simmons, Russell Wendell Simmons first entered this world on October 4, 1957. He grew up with his siblings Rev Run and Daniel Simmons Jr. in Queens, New York. Russell attended August Martin High School, and after graduating in 1975, he enrolled at the City College of New York, where he earned his bachelor’s degree. During his stay there, Simmons met Kurt Walker, who inspired him to become a hip-hop artist.
Russell founded the music label Def Jam with Rick Rubin in 1983 and has produced several music videos and films. He produced both the hit comedy series Def Comedy Jam and Def Poetry Jam. Later, he also produced a commercially successful comedy film called The Nutty Professor. This film starred famous artists like Eddie Murphy.
Besides the shy Def Jam production, Russell also founded other companies, including Phat Fashions LLC, which he finally sold to the Kellywood Company for 140 million dollars in 2004. He is also the founder of the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, which provides art education and support to less privileged youth.
The African-American star has amassed enormous wealth for himself and leads a wasteful lifestyle. Simmons’s net worth was estimated at 340 million dollars. He earns his net worth through his career as a record producer and other business ventures. In particular, Simmons is considered one of the richest record producers in America.
His Wife, Girlfriend, and Kids
Without a doubt, Russell Simmons was successful in his career, but the same cannot be said of his love life. The star was previously married to an American model named Kimora Lee. Kimora is a well-known television personality as well as a fashion designer and model. She gained fame by appearing on her own television show called Life in Fab Lane and Kimora: The House of Fab. Born and raised in Missouri in the United States; Kimora began modeling at the age of fourteen and has worked with several fashion designers, including Kari Lagerfeld, Emanuel Ungaro, Valentino, and Fendi, to name a few. She has appeared on the cover of popular fashion magazines, including Harper’s Bazaar, to name a few.
The relationship between the two began after they met at New York Fashion Week in 1992. After five years of a successful relationship, they exchanged vows in 1998. Their wedding took place on the Caribbean island of St. Barthelemy, and the ceremony was celebrated by Russell’s brother Joseph Reverend Run Simmons. After their wedding, the couple welcomed their first child, a daughter named Ming Lee Simmons, on January 21, 2000, and two years later; their second daughter, Aoki Lee Simmons, was born on August 16, 2002.
The couple lived happily ever after until after eight years their relationship turned sour. They separated in March 2006 and filed for divorce in 2008, which was completed in early 2009. Soon after their separation, Kimora married a Beninese-American actor and model named Djimon Hounsou, while nothing was known about Simmons’ later relationships. Apparently, Russell is currently single and has no known relationship at this time.
Russell Simmons Rape Allegations
Russell Simmons has joined the long list of celebrities involved in rape controversies. Towards the end of 2017, an American model named Keri Claussen accused Khalighi Russell of taking advantage of her when she was seventeen years old in 1991. In the meantime, Keri was not the only lady in the picture; a number of other women have also accused the record producer of sexual assault and rape. Among them are Amanda Seales, Kelly Cutrone, Luann de Lesseps, Toni Sallie, Lisa Kirk, Jenny Lumet, Tina Baker, and Drew Dixon.
In response, the record producer has vehemently denied all allegations and stated that he has not abused or violently treated women in any form. It is already known that Russell is a serious supporter of the women’s movement worldwide. Following these accusations, Russell resigned from his positions in his companies, and his name was also removed from the HBO series All Def Comedy.
However, Russell Simmons is not the first successful celebrity to be drawn into the web of sexual assault allegations. Several other celebrities such as Billy O’Reilly, Harvey Weinstein, Louis C.K., Steven Seagal, and James Franco, to name a few, have had their own share of such controversy.