Chrystal Callahan is a Toronto-born American fashion model, hot zone journalist, and philanthropist. Callahan has been dubbed the “Maverick Model” because of her reputation for taking on unconventional opportunities and covering events in dangerous post-war locations. She is of Russian, Nigerian and Irish descent, and holds dual citizenship in the United States and Canada. She speaks English, Russian, Chechen, Swedish and some Japanese and French.
Callahan began her public career as a fashion model as a teenager. She was signed to an agency in Tokyo where she did print and runway work for brands such as Chanel, Nike, Yohji Yamamoto, and FUBU.
While directing the documentary “Greco-Roman Grozny” in 2007, Callahan met the president of Chechnya and and became friends with him and the Minister of Press. In 2009 when the counter terrorism ban was lifted off the war torn republic, Callahan became the first and only Western person accepted into this closed and secretive culture that foreigners don’t have access to. She worked for the Chechen government and hosted a weekly current affairs show on television.
Callahan resides in Las Vegas and runs a charity for children called Operation Icon (2012).
- IMDb Mini Biography By: Sergei Arsov
A Canadian model will wear a Muslim headscarf and a Chechen national costume while broadcasting her own TV show in Russia’s North Caucasus republic
GROZNY, June 5 (RIA Novosti) – A Canadian model will wear a Muslim headscarf and a Chechen national costume while broadcasting her own TV show in Russia’s North Caucasus republic.
Chrystal Callahan’s weekly Sunday evening program, An Inside Look with Chrystal Callahan, will be broadcast in English with Russian subtitles. The first show will be aired on Sunday.
The program will consist of three segments: news, a weekly feature on a topic of her choice, and a Q&A with viewers who send in messages during the week, Grozny Television’s president Said-Selim Abdulmuslimov told RIA Novosti.
He said Callahan had been to the Chechen Republic several times and the last time she was in Grozny she said she would like to work there.
“The model likes Chechen national customs and traditions very much and her first program will be devoted to the topic of national dress of Chechen women,” Abdulmuslimov said.
During the program, Callahan will demonstrate to the audience three ways of tying the scarf and will use the one viewers like best in subsequent programs, he said.
Abdulmuslimov said Callahan is learning the Russian language and he did not rule out that the program could at some point be broadcast in Russian. He added that the contract with the model is for six months and has no special conditions.
Callahan said her family and friends in Canada support her decision and wished her the best of luck in her work.
“In the Chechen Republic there are wonderful people with beautiful traditions and customs that simply cannot leave anyone unaffected,” she was quoted as saying by the station’s press service.
The new program is one of a range of efforts the Chechen administration is making to improve the image of the republic in Russia and abroad, as well as to teach moral values to the youth.
The minister for external affairs, ethnic policy, press and information told Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov on Thursday that the media sphere in the republic was developing, with an emphasis on promoting patriotism. Shamsail Saraliyev showed Kadyrov the new edition of a local magazine, Nokhchicho, which propagandizes moral behavior.
“We have effective laws in our republic but we must not forget about our traditions and customs,” Kadyrov reminded Saraliyev.
Saraliyev also told the president that there were more than 10,000 visitors a day to the ministry’s website, chechnyaTODAY.com, which provides information about the republic in Russian and English.