Photo courtesy of Sebastian Faena/IMG LENS

Hunter Schafer was born December 31, 1998 and is an American fashion model, actress, and LGBTQ rights activist.

Schafer was born in Trenton, New Jersey, to parents Katy and Mac Schafer. Her father is a pastor, and their family moved between churches and congregations in New Jersey, Arizona, and finally Raleigh, North Carolina. She has three younger siblings: two sisters and a brother.

She graduated from the High School Visual Arts program at the North Carolina School of the Arts in 2017, having transferred there from Needham B. Broughton High School. In her senior year, Schafer was a semifinalist in the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program.

While in high school, she protested against the North Carolina Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act. Schafer planned to attend Central Saint Martins, an arts college in London, England, but deferred her enrollment after high school to focus on her career.

Schafer has modeled for Prada, Dior, Miu Miu, Calvin Klein, Rick Owens, Helmut Lang, Tommy Hilfiger, Thierry Mugler, Coach, Maison Margiela, Vera Wang, Marc Jacobs, Versus Versace, Emilio Pucci, Ann Demeulemeester, and Erdem, among other fashion houses.

For her activism, Teen Vogue granted her an interview with former United States Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

In 2019, Schafer was cast in the HBO series Euphoria, marking her acting debut. She received praise for her performance in the series, and the Primetime Emmy Awards came under fire for omitting her from the nominations along with other transgender actors. Aside from her leading role in the series, she also co-wrote an episode with the show’s creator Sam Levinson. Additionally, she collaborated with him so that her character and the show’s story reflected her experience.

Schafer is a trans woman. In an interview, she said that the internet helped her cope with her gender identity, turning to YouTube and social media to learn about people’s transition timelines. In 2019, Schafer said that she considered herself a lesbian, while in 2021 she stated that her sexuality was bi or pan.