JULY 30: Gina Rodriguez (1984-)



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On July 30 1984, Gina Alexis Rodriguez was born to Magali and Genaro Rodriguez in Chicago, Illinois. The youngest of three girls (her eldest sister, Ivelisse Rodriguez Simon, is an investment banker, and her second eldest sister, Rebecca Rodriguez, is a doctor), Rodriguez was raised in Chicago’s Northwest Side in the Belmont Craigin neighborhood. She performed in a salsa dance company, Fantasia Juvenil at the age of seven and continued to dance salsa until she was seventeen. Raised and educated Catholic, she graduated high school from St. Ignatius College Prep and was one of thirteen students accepted into Columbia University’s Theatrical Collaboration. She went to New York University’s School of Tisch Arts and trained with the Atlantic Theater Company and Experimental Theatre Wing, and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Arts in 2006.    

Rodriguez performed in the world premiere as Frida Kahlo in The Last Moments of Frida Kahlo at the America Stage Theatre at Casa Blue in the United Kingdom. In October 2011, Rodriguez accepted a recurring role on The Bold and The Beautiful, as Beverly. She performed in the musical Go For It!, which recevied a 2011 Imagen Awards  nomination. She was in Filly Brown and won an Imagen Award for that and also won the Best Actor Award at The First Run Film Festival in New York. She won the Inauguarl Lupe Award in 2013. Though she was offered a role in Devious Maids in 2013, she turned it down. In February 2014, Entertainment Weekly announced Rodriguez would star as Jane Villanueva in The CW’s Jane the Virgin. In 2014, she joined the cast for the dramatic film, Sticky Notes and in 2015, co-hosted the 2015 Teen Choice Awards. In 2016, she played in Deepwater Horizon, as Andrea Fleytas, and in Lip Sync Battle against Wilmer Valderrama. In 2017, she will be in the Christmas movie, The Star, in November.     

In March 2015, Rodriguez was named to the Board of Directors for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. Later the same year, Rodriguez helped raise money for PACER’s (Parents Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights)National Bullying Prevention Center and CustomInk “Be Good To Each Other Campaign”, where each celebrity designed a teeshirt and the proceeds of each purchased shirt went to PACER. Rodriguez’s design read: “Kindness Is Always In Style” in cursive writing. In October, Gina was announced partner to the Naja lingerie line, focused on women and the environment.      

Last June, Rodriguez answered a follower’s questions regarding her sexuality as:


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~lex lee.