Skip to main content

through Brandon Voss


Can you kill a track?

Slay Model Management, the world’s first modeling agency that exclusively represents transgender talent, is on the lookout for new faces, WWD reports. The agency will hold its first official “Model Search” on February 15 in Los Angeles.

“We seek star quality,” says Cecilio Asuncion, founder and director of Slay Model Management. “It takes more than beauty to be a top model. It takes determination, a healthy attitude, and a visceral understanding that she’s a role model first, and a trans woman second.

“Slay is not about selling transited,” continues Asuncion. “We sell the ability of a young woman to represent a brand or a designer. Sure, it’s great to be booked in June for Pride Month, but what we want is sustainability and year-round opportunity.

“Fashion changes. Companies understand the need for representation, diversity and inclusion,” he explains, adding that he believes trans models will soon be hired for their beauty alone and not because of their gender identity. “One of the biggest misconceptions is that a trans model has to be an activist. Frankly, I don’t believe they do. By honing their craft and presenting themselves as the best in the business, they will help generations future.”

To enter the search, aspiring trans models must click on the “Get Scouted” tab on the Slay Model Management website. The 25 finalists, selected from online submissions, will be invited to participate in the final on February 15 at One Culver. These prospects will compete for three spots on the agency’s roster.

The event will be hosted by model Arisce Wanzer (pictured) and celebrity DJ Lina Bradford, both represented by Slay Model Management. Wanzer made history in 2016 as the first trans model on the cover of Spiegel catalog.

Prior to the competition, which will be judged by industry professionals, all finalists will participate in a “Model Boot Camp”, where they will be mentored by top photographers, stylists and editors.

Slay’s models have appeared in campaigns for companies such as Eva Mendes for New York and Co., cosmetics company Nikita Dragun, Dragun Beauty and Katy Perry Fragrance, as well as television shows such as Pose, Law and Order: SVU, Project Runwayand Next in fashion.

The 2016 Oxygen Series strutproduced by Whoopi Goldberg, focused on Slay and the challenges her role models face in the fashion industry, including Laith Ashley, Dominique Jackson and Isis King.

Celebrity interviewer. Lover of gastronomy and Broadway in Manhattan. Hate writing biographies.