Valentina Sampaio has had a history-making year. This month, she becomes the first transgender model to appear within the pages of Sports Illustrated's iconic swimsuit issue.
Sampaio was announced as a 2020 rookie for the upcoming edition almost a year after becoming the first-ever openly transgender model at Victoria's Secret.In an essay for SI, an excerpt of which she shared on Instagram, Sampaio celebrated the publication for their creation of a "groundbreaking issue by bringing together a diverse set of multitalented, beautiful women in a creative and dignified way." She also wrote about her difficult path to achieving success in her modeling career. "I was born trans in a remote, humble fishing village in northern Brazil.