Talk about a diverse career. Stephanie Adams-Nicolai’s resume provides a fascinating read. She was a Playboy Centerfold and model.? She has dual bachelor’s degrees in business. She used her earnings as a model and began investing. She also ventured into writing and eventually wrote more than two dozen books while she founded a publishing company. From there, she branched into the medical field and created a successful medical practice.
There’s more! She also launched a skincare line as well as a non-profit organization. Meet Stephanie Adams-Nicolai, founder and CEO of GODDESSY and GODDESSY Organics, and partner and CFO of Wall Street Chiropractic.
Her interest in becoming a chiropractor came after she was injured. In May 2006, she had a dispute with a New York City taxi driver over a drop-off location. The driver called the police and falsely reported that she threatened him with a gun. According to Adams-Nicolai, during the incident police threw her to the ground and injured her neck and back. She filed a lawsuit against the NYPD and six years later, a jury awarded her $1.2 million, $400,000 more than had been sought by her lawyer. As for the taxi driver, his license was revoked and he was fined $2,700 for the incident.
TNJ.com: How did you become a model?
Stephanie Adams-Nicolai: I was raised since birth by my aunts who were both models. Joyce was a runway model as well as a cover girl for Wella, and Pearl was a pin-up model in the 60s. At the age of 16, my aunts convinced me to also start a career in modeling. I was first signed to Wilhelmina Models and later signed to Elite Model Management by John Casablancas, who took an interest after noticing my photo in a photographer’s portfolio. At some point, photographs of me taken during a photo shoot for an international poster were sent to Playboy by the same photographer, with my permission, “for fun.” However, Playboy received the photos and took my being a centerfold very seriously. Being that I always admired the beautiful and artistic qualities of Playboy photography and viewed posing in Playboy as “every bad girl’s dream and every good girl’s fantasy,” I accepted the invitation to appear at the Playboy Mansion, but declined to appear in the magazine. Eventually, I realized what an honor it would be to pose in the magazine and finally accepted the offer to pose for Playboy. Playboy photographed me fast, before I changed my mind. Within a month of doing photo shoots for companies such as Seventeen and Clairol, I became Playboy’s “Miss November 1992.” The founder and CEO of Elite Model Management, John Casablancas, at the time appeared with me in one of the feature photos for my pictorial because he was my mentor, fiance, and as he put it, my “biggest fan.” Soon afterwards, I appeared in numerous Playboy international centerfold editions and videos, and also became a spokesmodel for Playboy Enterprises, even doing cameo appearances on the Late Show With David Letterman on behalf of Playboy. To this day, I still look to Playboy as my extended family and wisely invested my proceeds from modeling for Playboy at the time to become a self-made millionaire before the age of 30.
TNJ.com From there, why did you decide to venture into non-modeling professions?
Adams-Nicolai: In spite of a vigorous agenda and successful modeling career, I still managed to obtain dual bachelor’s degrees in business management and marketing. That said, my childhood love for the arts, writing and creating, as well as my desire to pursue a career in business, had to be put on hold due to my demand in the modeling industry, which is not a bad thing because I applied my sense of business to my career every step of the way.
Publications have always stressed my modeling career, however, what most of the media fail to write about is my passion for business. Rather than being labeled a model, I was always, first and foremost, a businesswoman. Modeling, for me, was a business. Investing my proceeds from modeling was a business. I had a distinct goal and I am fortunate enough to have successfully gone above and beyond it.
TNJ.com: Tell me what led you in to the chiropractor field?
Adams-Nicolai: Several paths led me to starting a medical practice. Suffering injuries that led to a high-profile media case was both physically and mentally difficult for me. Being told by several doctors that my injuries were permanent was not what I wanted to hear and no amount won in the case could ever get my good health back. During the turmoil, I managed to find love, meeting my husband who happens to be a chiropractor. Not only does he help me with my injuries, we also decided to co-found a medical practice that helps many people suffering from pain either due to everyday activities or from injuries like mine. No one should suffer. In starting a wellness group, my motives were both professional and deeply personal.
TNJ.com: What prompted GODDESSY?
Adams-Nicolai: GODDESSY is the side to me that is creative, spiritual, and enlightening. Besides my love for business, I always had a desire to write and explore all forms of art that enabled inner serenity, for myself as well as others. With GODDESSY, I became a published author as well as the owner of a publishing company, so business and writing walked hand-in-hand alongside me.
TNJ.com: Please explain the name.
Adams-Nicolai: GODDESSY is a portmanteau of “goddess” which is a spiritual woman and “odyssey” which is a journey, which defines GODDESSY as a “spiritual journey/”.? All my life, I have believed in magic, believing that just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, magic is in the mind of the believer. GODDESSY is about exploring your spiritual side, forgetting all that you’ve been taught and told, and following your own illuminating journey to a path of love, peace, knowledge and freedom. And that is why I wrote New Age books to encourage others to find, develop, and nourish their spirit with whatever it is that they believe in. My motto for GODDESSY is “Belief is only the beginning…”
TNJ.com: You have also authored several books, are you working on a new one?
Adams-Nicolai: My spirit is calling me to explore the path of my latest project, a New Age, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization I recently created. Besides being a resource for people to discover spiritual, empowering enlightenment, I also plan to do a series of writings on esoteric and philosophical topics, with the hopes of further inspiring a vastly growing spiritual community.
TNJ.com: Having such a diverse career, what would be your advice to others?
Adams-Nicolai: If you do not wake up in the morning looking forward to what you do, then make a change and change your career path. Do what you love, and the money will follow. If what you love are many avenues, explore every one of them until you find your way towards a successful and meaningful professional journey. And remember, you don’t have to grow only apple trees. You can grow apples, pears, berries, or whatever else you dream of and create your own unique, colorful garden.
TNJ.com: Why do you feel it is important to re-brand every now and then?
Adams-Nicolai: It’s not so much important to “re-brand” as important it is to continue evolving and be true to your dreams and goals.
TNJ.com: What has been your most important business lesson?
Adams-Nicolai: Never settle. Never stop. Always believe.
TNJ.com: What’s next?
Adams-Nicolai: Besides Wall Street Chiropractic and GODDESSY, I am looking forward to branching off towards spiritually helping many individuals and communities globally.
TNJ.com: How do you juggle all of this and your personal life as well?
Adams-Nicolai: Even an energetic juggler needs a good rest. I prefer to spend my quiet time with my family. With all the many projects and businesses I pursue, at the end of the day, and pretty much all day every day, nothing means more to me than my family.