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Women’s History NJ: Christina Milian

Actress-singer Christina Milian (given name Christine Flores) was born in Jersey City on September 26, 1981. She is the oldest of three daughters born to Cuban immigrants. While Milian was still a baby, she and her family relocated to Waldorf, Maryland.

During her formative years, Christina Milian was a creative and imaginative child. She grew up idolizing two singers in particular, Janet Jackson and Madonna. By age 9, she started auditioning for local talent agencies; soon after, was in commercials for Wendy’s and Honeycomb, in addition to earning the lead role in the musical Annie.

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Christina Milian Heads to LA

In the mid-1990s – her teenage years – Christina Milian and her mother moved to Los Angeles; allowing Milian to pursue acting and singing professionally. At this point, Milian also adopted her mother’s maiden name, thinking it would help land a wider range of roles.

Milian’s breakthrough came in 2000 after recording a song with rapper Ja Rule, singing the chorus to the hit single “Between You and Me.” She also co-wrote and appeared on songs on Jennifer Lopez and PYT’s albums the following year. After recording her self-titled debut album, she released it outside the US in 2001. However, due to the terror attacks on 9/11, her album did not release in the US as planned; ultimately, Milian opted not to release the album in the US at all.

Christina Milian with Goat

In the early 2000s, Milian appeared in shows like Sister, Sister, Smart Guy, The Steve Harvey Show, and Get Real. But her first lead role came in 2003, starring alongside Nick Cannon in the film Love Don’t Cost a Thing.

From the moment she found success as an actor, Christina Milian started working with several charities; starting out with her time as a big sister to foster children through the Children Uniting Nations charity. In fact, at The Reign fundraiser, she received a humanitarian award from the Elton John AIDS Foundation. To this day, she presents herself as a strong role model for young children across the country.

Success in the 21st Century

In 2004, Milian released her sophomore R&B effort, It’s About Time. Meanwhile, she starred in films Be Cool, with John Travolta and Uma Thurman, and Pulse, with Kristen Bell.

Christina Milian with Daughter Violet

In 2009, Christina Milian took a brief hiatus from acting and recording to give birth to her first child. When she returned to work in 2010, however, she wanted to focus solely on acting. Since then, her only album to release came in 2015, as the EP titled 4U.

Milian started off 2020 by giving birth to her second child, a boy. As an actor, she is a regular on the Sony Crackle crime drama web series, The Oath. She also appears in the TV movie, High & Tight, premiering in late 2020.

Click here to find other great women from NJ in our Women’s History NJ series.

Top (Hero) Photo: © Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons
Other Photos: Christina Milian / Instagram

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