The Advice Brooks Nader’s Mom Gave Before Her Swim Search Casting

A key question impressed Christie Brinkley.

Brooks Nader and her mom, Holland. Photo courtesy of Brooks Nader.

Brooks Nader and her mom, Holland. Photo courtesy of Brooks Nader.

Moms can be great for all sorts of advice. But a nugget of wisdom from her mother might have helped Brooks Nader land her first modeling gig with SI Swimsuit.

“My mom came with me to the Swim Search audition in 2018 in Miami and just waited in the lobby for me,” says Nader. “I kept getting advanced to the next rounds, and she stuck around even after I told her to leave. She just kept crying every time I would advance.”

Beyond the dedication to sticking it out during the open casting call, Nader turned to her mom, Holland, for counsel when she learned an interview with veteran SI Swimsuit models was part of the next step of the application process. “I told her I was interviewing with either Hailey Clauson, Kate Bock or Christie Brinkley,” says Nader. “And she told me to throw the ball back and ask the question, ‘What would your advice be as a model?’”

Nader followed her mom’s advice and asked Brinkley the question. “Christie said, ‘That’s so nice of you to ask,’ and went on to say the same thing my mom had always told me: ‘Be on time with a smile.’ Well, it must have worked because I won the model search and shot my rookie spread in Bali. I’ve held onto that piece of advice throughout my entire career, and it’s been super helpful. So, I thank my mom for that.”

Ever since the 25-year-old's modeling career has taken off, Nader has been bringing her mom along for the ride.

“I’ve had some big shoots in China over the past couple of years, and I’ve been taking my mom,” says Nader. “She’s gotten to travel more than ever with me, and those are my favorite memories. We’ve gotten a lot closer over time, which is a big change from high school when we were much more combative. I’ve grown a whole new appreciation for her.”

What’s more, Holland is her daughter’s biggest fan. “My mom is super loyal to her daughters,” Nader says. “She’s very involved in her church, and people would ask her how she felt about me posing in SI Swimsuit. And this is someone who didn’t let us wear bikinis. She said, ‘She’s in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, how do you think I feel?’That just shuts them right up. She’s fiercely loyal, no matter what.”

Mother's Day is coming up this Sunday, May 8th. If you need gift ideas for your mom, take a look at our gift guide here.

Jordi Lippe-McGraw


Jordi Lippe-McGraw is a Contributing Editor for SI Swimsuit covering all things lifestyle from travel and beauty to entertainment and wellness. Over her nearly 15-year-long journalism career, her work has appeared in the New York Times, WSJ Magazine, Forbes, and more. Plus, she’s appeared on TV shows such as Wendy Williams, TODAY, E!, and MSNBC for her expertise. Jordi's personal passion for travel has brought her to over 50 countries on all 7 continents, including Antarctica at 5 months pregnant. She's also an avid penguin and truffle lover.