By: Chris McManigal
Before any of us knew her name she was known as Melanija Knavs, born to working-class parents Viktor and Amalija Knavs in Novo Mesto, Slovenia, Yugoslavia on April 26, 1970.
Melanija’s first career began early in her life when she became a model while still a teenager. Her work took her throughout Europe for many year until she ultimately relocated to New York City in 1996 at 26 years of age.
Once in the US, Melanija Knavs Americanized her name to Melania Knauss and eventually got a Green Card and became a permanent resident in 2001.
Melania met her future husband Donald Trump in 1998 at a party in New York City while he was separated from his second wife. They began dating soon after that first meeting and then upon their marriage in 2005 became known by the name we are all now so familiar with, Melania Trump. Their son Barron, her first and only child and Donald’s fifth, was born in 2006, the same year she became a naturalized American citizen. It is said that Melania and Barron have an exceptionally close and happy relationship and that she has taught him to speak fluent Slovene, her native language, on her own.
When Donald Trump is inaugurated on January 20th next year, Melania Trump will become the next First Lady of the United States. She will be only the second foreign-born First Lady in our nation’s history. It remains to be see how much she will remain in the public eye or whether or not she will spearhead any social causes, although she did remark during the recent campaign that bullying was an issue that was important to her. It is currently thought that she will at least for a time remain in the Trump’s New York City home instead of moving to the White House as to not disrupt Barron’s schooling.
Melania speaks 6 languages; Slovene, Serbo-Croatian, English, French, Italian and German.