Nicole Richie is an American socialite, author, actress and singer best known for being the daughter of singer Lionel Richie and for appearing in the reality show The Simple Life with ex-best friend Paris Hilton.
Born in Berkeley, California, Nicole was adopted by Lionel Richie. According to an April 2006 Tatler magazine interview with Nicole, her biological father was a drummer who worked with Lionel Richie and her biological mother was a backstage assistant for Lionel.
At age 3, Nicole was informally adopted by Lionel and his wife Brenda Harvey-Richie and they raised her as their daughter. When she was 9, they went through the legal formalities of the adoption. She still speaks with her biological mother who is also of Afro-Latin diaspora - currently residing in the Dominican Republic.
Surrounded by beautiful garb and costumes as a youngster, she developed an appreciation for fine fashion at an early age and in 2009, founded The Winter Kate|House of Harlow 1960 collection in partnership with Majestic Mills (apparel) and Modern Vintage (accessories).
Following that, her premiere clothing collection, Winter Kate, launched globally in spring 2011, along with her premiere sunglasses collection under existing label House of Harlow 1960. House of Harlow 1960, which launched in 2008, also continues its successful jewelry and shoe collection.
Richie was seen on the small screen guest starring in the hit NBC primetime series, Chuck. She starred in the episodes as the snarky and spiteful girl who tortured the series' lead character, Sarah, at school and is forced to face her again.
Her other TV credits include guest appearances on Eve and Rock Me Baby, HBO's Six Feet Under, Bravo's Project Runway and NBC's American Dreams as Brenda Reid, the lead singer of The Exciters.
Her film credits include a cameo appearance in Wes Craven's Cursed and a role in the feature film Kids in America.
Richie also spends much of her time working with The Richie-Madden Children's Foundation (RMCF). Launched in December 2007 in honour of the birth of Nicole Richie and Joel Madden's daughter Harlow, The Richie-Madden Children Foundation provides meaningful opportunities to children around the world.
RMCF partnered with the non-profit organization Beyond Shelter to create an annual fundraiser and media events related to youth homelessness. The organization has also developed a media project to raise awareness and inspire action among teenage girls.
Richie and Madden, along with their family, aim to use their place in pop culture to raise awareness about the domestic and international issues endangering children, to highlight the organizations that are making a positive impact and to inspire others, especially young people, to get involved.
Richie also serves on the board of the Environmental Media Association and supports other charities including The Young Musicians Fund, The Art of Elysium and The Race to Erase MS. She was recently honored by A Place Called Home for her philanthropic efforts.
In addition to acting, designing and philanthropy, in 2005, Richie wrote and published a best-selling book for Harper Collins, The Truth About Diamonds. She wrote and published her second novel, Priceless, in 2010.
She is also a celebrity mentor on the reality competition series Fashion Star.
Richie currently resides in Los Angeles. Her godfather was Michael Jackson before his death.