California born, Gabby was raised on St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands. She didn’t take up volleyball until in the 11th grade when she and her mother moved to St. Petersburg, Florida. Gabby won an athletic scholarship to Florida State University where she majored in Communications and played two seasons of volleyball before accepting offers from the modeling world in New York. Gabby returned to FSU campus and set two school volleyball records before being inducted into the college’s Athletic Hall of Fame.
Gabby trained hard to hone her skills in 2-person beach volleyball and competed domestically in the 1999-2000 Olympic Challenge Series and the 1999-2000 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour. In 1997, competing with the best global beach volleyball players ever assembled, Gabby’s 4-person team took first place at the first-ever Beach Volleyball World Championships.
Gabby was Nike’s first female athlete to design a shoe, and Nike’s first-ever female cross-training spokesperson (1993-99). The Air GR was the first women’s shoe to outsell men’s and outsell the Air Jordan.
Gabby’s skills cross over onto the big screen where she played a pro beach volleyball player in ‘Cloud Nine’ with Burt Reynolds (2004), a guest star in ‘North Shore’ (2004) and as a physical trainer in the film ‘Gattica’ (1997). She’s graced the cover of Sports Illustrated for Women, Travel & Leisure Golf, Women’s Sports & Fitness, Outside, Elle, Shape, Self, Harpers’ Bazaar, Volleyball, Fitness, Life, Vogue, Experience Life and People.
Gabby is currently the creator of The Honey Line, a fast-paced, magazine-style program that delivers realistic solutions to women’s questions concerning style, health & fitness, home, food and the environment. She’s also married to surfer Laird Hamilton and is the mother of two young daughters and a step-daughter.
Passionate about fitness, Gabby has produced and released numerous exercise DVDs and health & fitness products. She’s a spokesperson for Simply Nutrilite, a line of vitamins and supplements and her fitness tips can be found on the pages of Shape magazine where she is a monthly contributing editor.
Gabby can also be seen hosting various TV broadcasts for ESPN, Discovery and others. She won a huge following by taking risks road-luging, white water kayaking, drag racing, surfing, and sky diving on “MTV Sports” and “The Extremists with Gabrielle Reece” in the 90’s, and she was a commentator at the 1998 Goodwill Games.
Women’s Sports & Fitness named Gabby one of the ’20 Most Influential Women in Sports’ in 1997, the same year Crown published the book, “Big Girl in the Middle,” which Gabby co-wrote with Karen Karbo.
To learn even more about this athletic superstar, and all-around Pretty Tough gal, listen to our candid interview. Gabby talks about her incredible career, her advice to girls pursuing athletics in school or for a career and what she thinks about the evolution of women in sport.
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