Photographed by Greg Swales
Styled by Ashley Galang
Hair by Dhairius Thomas and Dimitris Giannetos
Makeup by Soo Park and Yeika
Manicure by Nori Yamanaka
Interview by Bernadette Morra
Rocha, who was raised in Richmond, B.C., came to modelling as a Jehovah’s Witness. From early on, she has adhered to its core beliefs, such as no nudity or even partial nudity. But her faith has never been an obstacle, and Rocha quickly became lauded for her theatrical style of movement in front of the camera.
Her strength of character extended to her off-hours as well. Rocha was among the first models to embrace social media (even her three young children have accounts); she is an owner of Nomad Management, with her husband/manager, artist James Conran; and she has passed on her knowledge of posing, runways, branding, contracts, agencies, accounting and social media to more than 4,000 students through the Coco Rocha Model Camp.
But the thing she is most proud of, she says, is her involvement in pushing for legislation changes in New York state for models under the age of 18. “There were no laws protecting against sexual harassment and abuse or ensuring that models received payment or even meal breaks—nothing,” says Rocha, who began her career around age 15.