Before her debut on the hit reality TV show, America’s Next Top Model, and the subsequent years as a professional model, Leah earned a bachelor degree in psychology from the University of Missouri-St. Louis, graduating with Magna cum Laude honors and President of the Psychology Honor Society, Psi Chi. Leah is currently working towards her Masters in Pastoral Theology, in the IPT program, at Ave Maria University.
Now, as a full-time apologist for Catholic Answers, Leah brings her experience of the fashion world and the Catholic world to the masses. Leah has appeared on numerous secular and non-secular television and radio programs, including EWTN’s Life on the Rock and Faith & Culture programs. Leah, also spoke on behalf of international youth at the United Nations’ panel discussion in July of 2011.
Leah speaks internationally to people of all ages on topics of mercy, conversion, human dignity, modesty and chastity.
Inspired by John Paul II, Mother Teresa and Pope Benedict XVI, Leah reaches out to all those lost in sin, scared to change and offers them the lighted pathway to Christ, our Hope and our Salvation. Pope Benedict XVI said, "The world promises you comfort but you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness!” Leah inspires and challenges her audiences to accept the mercy of Christ, embrace true love, and welcome conversion.
- Leah’s Witness Talk (For high school rallies, youth groups, or retreats)
In this powerful presentation, Leah focuses on mercy, forgiveness and the ability to change your life. . . all of it. Using her personal testimony, she encourages all people to realize their call for greatness, rather than comfort. She also emphasizes the role of women in the Catholic Church, how this effects men and how each of them can unveil the lie of perfectionism that targets men and women, enabling them to see the truth.
- Fashion and Chastity: How it all ‘fits’ together (For all-girl high school assemblies, retreats, or rallies)
In this seminar, Leah focuses on the lifestyle choices she made, and how her fashion style was a reflection of it. She shares how her attire made it easier to succumb to poor lifestyle choices, and explains how clothing can be a powerful communicator - it can tell the world who we are, where we are going, and even our beliefs.
Leah explains, "When I dressed immodestly, modeled immodestly, it told those around me that I was a party girl, there for a good time, and had very few boundaries/limits. I attracted people, friends, jobs, boyfriends, etc... that also behaved in this same way. This makes perfect sense; when you believe in garbage logic, all you get is garbage. After my reversion, I chose to allow Christ to change me . . . although I didn’t think Jesus was a fashionista! As a fashion model, one of the things that defines us, is our clothes - what we wear and how we wear it. I could handle changing my friends, dropping the garbage excuses for "relationships”, etc... but my clothes?!
In her presentation, Leah shares how modesty inspired others to look at her, and treat her differently than ever before. When her styles changed, her friends noticed that something was up. In Leah’s words, "And they were right ... something was up—my morality for the first time in my life!” People knew immediately that something had changed. And she was then expected to act like she dressed. She was expected to act respectful, with honor and with grace. She learned from experience that dressing with dignity spoke louder than any fashion runway.
- The Faithful Fashionista - Where Faith and Fashion meet (For all-girl high school assemblies, retreats, or rallies)
What are the fashions of today? What does it really mean when we say that we are making a “fashion statement”? Can faith really play a role in fashion?
What we wear is a portrayal to the world of our own personal image of who we are. So… who are we? While there are many different answers to this question, each intrinsic to the person, we all have one common denominator. We are children of God. We are made in the likeness and image of God, the Father. We are made out of love and for love.
At times, clothes are the only visible clues to our personalities and even our beliefs. Today, clothes have become a means for one human to evaluate another. Our clothes tell a lot about us. It can tell others what we want, our talents, our needs, our personalities, our dispositions and our destinations. It can build as much as it can destroy our image. Clothing is silent but a very powerful communicator.
In this fun yet informative presentation, Leah goes over the current fashions, the influence of the media and how to live out your faith with your everyday fashions. This comprehensive presentation gives the audience a Christian perspective to fashion by relying on biblical verses that support modest, pure and beautiful fashions. Leah gives practical advice on the how to wear the current fashions as well as fashion no-no’s. A longer Q&A is provided for this presentation.
(Presentation 60 minutes, Q&A 20 minutes)