The other day i overheard a 20-something say, “I’m obsessed with Elon Musk’s mom.” I had no idea she was an influencer so I decided to check her out. It turns out she is way more than that.
Not only does Maye Musk, has 261K followers on instagram. she is an author, a fashionista, a coach and a dietician. She has reinvented herself over and over again and for many woman she is an inspiration.
Her story is one of strength and reinvention and we wanted to share it with you as she is a true BA50. Here’s a start from her website…
“Maye Musk at seventy-one is a fashionable, charming, jet-setting supermodel, public speaker, and respected dietitian with a fascinating and tight-knit circle of family and friends. But things were not always so easy or glamorous–she became a single mom at thirty-one years old, struggling through poverty to provide for her three children; dealt with weight issues as a plus-size model and overcame ageism in the modeling industry; and established a lifelong career as a dietitian, all the while starting over in eight different cities across three countries and two continents. But she made her way through it all with an indomitable spirit and a no-nonsense attitude to become a global success at what she calls the prime of her life….
And…..Vanity Fair published a great piece about how she dealt with finding work in an ageist world.
See below to follow that story.
How does Maye Musk, a graceful, silver-haired model and dietitian, feel about being called an “It girl” at the age of 68? “It’s absolutely hilarious,” she says with a South African accent, climbing behind the wheel of a green Tesla and peeling onto L.A.’s Sunset Boulevard. The car is a gift from her son Elon Musk, the Tesla C.E.O. and arguably the most famous inventor-entrepreneur of his generation. “But my friends tell me: I was famous before Elon was famous,” she says, flashing a smile that suddenly looks familiar from a Target billboard in Times Square, a campaign for Virgin America, and Beyoncé’s video for her song “Haunted.”
Musk’s life story reads like a stylish adventure book. She was born Maye Haldeman in Regina, Saskatchewan, in 1948, to explorer parents, who had met when her father, a caretaker, came to take lessons with her mother, a ballroom-dancing instructor. When Musk was nearly three, the family, including her three siblings, moved to Pretoria, South Africa. She started modeling at 15—“when models had to have their own shoes and jewelry”—and was a finalist in the 1969 Miss South Africa contest. By 21 she had earned a bachelor’s in dietetics, and she would go on to juggle nutritional clients with fashion shoots. She married Errol Musk, an engineer, in 1970, had three kids (Elon has a younger brother, Kimbal, and a sister, Tosca), but divorced him nine years later and followed her children as they left apartheid South Africa for careers in North America. Elon’s nickname was “genius boy,” though she’s quick to add, “All my kids are brilliant.” (Kimbal created the Kitchen, a family of farm-to-table restaurants, and Tosca is a filmmaker.) Maye moved to Toronto, then New York, and, in 2013, settled in Marina del Rey, California, to be near the grandkids.
Lately, the fashion world has been paying more attention to the five-decade model. “I’m living proof that [you can] find work for an older woman . . . I’ve never worked so much as I do now,” Musk says proudly. The jobs have evolved from “mother of the bride” commercials to “mother of Elon” editorials, which doesn’t bother her one bit: “I don’t care why a client books me, as long as they book me.”