Sofia Richie

NEW YORK-FEB 12: Sofia Richie attends the FENTY PUMA by Rihanna

Richie in 2016, photo by Debby Wong/Bigstock.com

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Date of Birth: August 24, 1998

Ethnicity:
*father – African-American, small amounts of English, Scottish, and French-Canadian
*maternal grandfather – Greek
*maternal grandmother – English, Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish

Sofia Richie is an American model. She is the daughter of Lionel Richie, a famed musician, and Diane Kerry/Keri Alexander, a dancer and designer. Among her siblings is Nicole Richie (who is Lionel’s adopted daughter).

Sofia’s father is African-American; his parents were both black, with small amounts of English and Scottish, and distant French-Canadian, ancestry. Sofia’s mother is white. She is of Greek descent on her own father’s side, and of English, Irish, and Scots-Irish/Northern Irish ancestry on her own mother’s. A picture of Sofia’s mother and maternal grandmother can be seen here. Sofia’s mother was described as a “Greek beauty” in a 1993 article in Regents/Prentice Hall.

Sofia has said:

I’m very light, so some people don’t really know that I’m black… I’ve been in situations where people will say something kind of racist and I’ll step in and they’ll be like, ‘Oh, well, you’re light.’ That still doesn’t cut it, buddy. It’s 2016 – you better get your s–t together before you get slapped out here.

Sofia’s paternal grandfather was Lionel/Lyonel Brockman Richie (the son of Charles A./E. Richie and Ida J. Garfield). Lionel was born in Alabama, to African-American parents. Charles was the son of Henry Richie and Georgia Anna.

Sofia’s paternal grandmother was Alberta R. Foster (the daughter of Albert Davidson Foster and Adelaide M. Brown). Alberta was born in Tennessee, to African-American parents. Albert was the son of George Foster and Betsey. Adelaide was the daughter of John Louis Brown and Volenderver Towson. Sofia’s great-great-grandfather John was the National leader and co-founder of “The Knights of the Wise Men,” a fraternal organization for black men in the post-Civil War period; John was the son of a white slave owner, Morgan Williams Brown, of English, Scottish, and French-Canadian descent, and of Mariah, who was a slave.

Sofia’s maternal grandfather is named Theodore T. “Ted” Alexander (the son of Stephanos Alexandropolis and Diamondo). Ted is of Greek ancestry.

Sofia’s maternal grandmother is Marilyn J. Gilbert (the daughter of Raymond Dewey Gilbert and Virginia Rae Moss Ferry). Marilyn is caucasian. Raymond was born in Illinois, the son of Irish parents, Stephen Winfield Gilbert and Martha Hill. Virginia was the daughter of David Walter Ferry and Maybell/Maybelle Jane Sherwin Moss.

"To Protect and Serve" an Evening of Entertainment and Inspiration - Arrivals

Sofia’s parents Lionel and Diane Richie in 2002, photo by Prphotos

Sources: Information about Sofia’s father’s appearance on Who Do You Think You Are?, 2011 – http://www.ancestraldiscoveries.com

Genealogy of Sofia Richie (focusing on her father’s side) – https://www.geni.com

Genealogy of Sofia’s father – http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com

Sofia’s paternal grandfather, Lionel/Lyonel Brockman Richie, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Genealogy of Sofia’s father (focusing on his mother’s side) – http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com

Sofia’s paternal grandmother, Alberta R. Foster, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Obituary of Sofia’s paternal great-great-grandfather, John Louis Brown – http://www.findagrave.com

Sofia’s maternal great-grandfather, Raymond Dewey Gilbert, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Death record of Sofia’s maternal great-grandfather, Raymond Dewey Gilbert – https://www.findagrave.com

Sofia’s maternal great-grandmother, Virginia Rae Moss Ferry, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

ethnic

Curious about ethnicity

77 Responses

  1. SexyBlack 3434 says:

    Again responding to Conrade…
    She identifies with her Blackness.” That’s good for her.

    “You are saying because she “looks” white that she is white which is not true especially in USA.”

    I never said she’s white. I said she has white privilege and she’s mixed race with a light phenotype. To call herself black is a disservice to black people who do face oppression.

    “The moment people find out someone who “looks” white is not, most times are not seen as white. Look at the movie Imitation of Life.”

    You’re referencing a fictional film set in the 1940’s. It’s not the 1940’s anymore it’s the 21st century.

    I doubt Sofia has ever been “randomly” stopped by airport security.

    Again, the movie Imitation of LIFE is based on what is real in society( back then and NOW) and the treatment of white looking and or light-skinned Black people. She does not identify as WHITE, so….. it is her choice. Again, RACE is a social construct and it can depend on the country. Look at Adriana Lima( she identifies as an Afro-Brazilian despite looking white even though Brazil has race off of phenotype. I do agree she does have the white privilege to some extent- good for her. But she is not doing a disservice because she identifies as Black. Also,just because someone LOOKS white does not mean that their genotype will match that. Back in the day, there were a lot of white-looking Black people( I have them in my family) who were part of Black society. LIke HBCU president Mordecai Wyatt Johnson. I forgot to post the link to the YT video which explains how white looking people are perceived in America https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBdYkJ4UgRc at 5:13. It feels like you are not even American so you won’t grasp the reality of people that are mixed-race and/ or Black how they relate to Black society.

    • Oaken05 says:

      GIVE. IT. A. REST.

      • SexyBlack 3434 says:

        Pakemo05- I never ever responded to YOU why are you butting in another conversation(plus I have only responded back)….. unless… Comrade is that you??? Do you have another username? hahaha.

      • SexyBlack 3434 says:

        OAKEN05- I never ever responded to YOU why are you butting in another conversation(plus I have only responded back)….. unless… Comrade is that you??? Do you have another username? hahaha.

    • comrade says:

      @SexyBlack 3434

      “Also,just because someone LOOKS white does not mean that their genotype will match that.”
      Correct you know the difference between phenotype and genotype. Unfortunately most racism is based on phenotype not genotype.

      I would have no problem with it if Sofia said she was part black because she is but people can’t deny the other 50% of their identity.
      This seems common among a lot of celebrities. They suppress/block out part of their ethnicity/ancestry because it doesn’t fit with what they’re selling.

      I understand relating more to one side of your family than the other but you can’t ignore the other half of yourself.

      With that said (to stop the further commenting of the identify police) I’ll give in. If she identifies as black then she is black because we live in an age where people can identify as they please.

      “It feels like you are not even American so you won’t grasp the reality of people that are mixed-race and/ or Black how they relate to Black society.”

      I identify as American so I do know what it’s like.

  2. Oaken05 says:

    SexyBlack 3434,

    You’ve made EIGHT nearly consecutive posts on this page in one sitting. You need to calm down. Obsessed much?

    • SexyBlack 3434 says:

      Excuse me??? I am replying back to people who RESPONDED TO ME. LOL People are trying to figure out her grandfather’s ethnicity. I am doing just that. You need to sit your butt down and do some research too.

  3. comrade says:

    It’s most likely that Ted Alexander was Greek/of Greek descent.

    Diane mentions being half Greek on instagram:

    “@dianekrichie According to my hair Doppler it’s 87F with 80% Humidity! ‍♀️‍♀️ Can’t fight The Greek Mane! #frizzfest #humidhairdontcare”
    https://theinstantstalker.com/share/BW8MayngL-s (scroll down a bit and beware of ads)

    “@dianekrichie Half #GreekGoddess you can tell!!”
    https://theinstantstalker.com/share/2SS7lrsO3T

    Diane’s parents most likely married before 1963 in California but I haven’t found a marriage record yet.

    • comrade says:

      If it helps anyone else with research. Marilyn Gilbert married James Ashley in 1971. So that means that either Marilyn and Ted divorced before 1971 or that Ted Alexander died before 1971. I haven’t found either divorce record or death record but it could be that they moved to a different state to where Diane was born?

      https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V668-GFK
      https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V62F-5VH
      https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VLMV-3C5

    • andrew says:

      Well, it’s plausible that Sofia’s mother may be half Greek. Surely more than “African-American” as she was listed for long time here.

    • SexyBlack 3434 says:

      That does not mean she is half Greek. She might have Greek ancestry.

        • MissMaria says:

          @comrade, you have to learn, that was people identify as, is actually the truth. So if she identifies as African-American, then that is the whole truth.

          • comrade says:

            Let’s all live in a fantasy world where everyone can identify as they please. I identify as HRH Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain. Bow down to your sovereign.

            Truth: that which is true in accordance with fact or reality. (not what people identify as)

            Call a horse a fish and it’s still a horse. it doesn’t magically turn into a fish. even though that horse might identify as a fish. it’s still a horse.

          • jackson9 says:

            Quote “Let’s all live in a fantasy world where everyone can identify as they please.” Why not? In America we defied birth genders and even created a whole list of new ones along with random pronouns to go along with it?

        • SexyBlack 3434 says:

          The reason is that SHE is Black. She identifies as Black. WHY are people wanting Sophia to not be Black and Greek sooo bad??? Is is funny. African-Americans are a multigenerational mix but that does not take away from our lineage and or race. DO you know how many Black people say they are part Native American and turned out it was a lie?? I would roll my eyes. She is Black because her dad is Black and her mom most likely mixed-race. Nothing wrong with being Black.

          • comrade says:

            Why do you want Sofia to be black when in reality she’s mixed race and possibly part Greek? She has a light phenotype and lives with the comforts of white privilege.

            I didn’t know black people had white privilege.

            SexyBlack 3434, why do you want her to be black so bad?

            “Nothing wrong with being Black.” I agree but Sofia isn’t black. She’s mixed race with black ancestry.

          • andrew says:

            @ sexyblack (I like your nickname)

            Can I identify as black too and going into the streets singing “Say it loud, I’m black and I’m proud”?

            It does not really matter how you identify and what a DNA test may say, if you look white you are white. Period.

            Not that she facially looks completely white, but she would be seen as such by the large majority of people.

        • SexyBlack 3434 says:

          I am responding to this : Why do you want Sofia to be black when in reality she’s mixed race and possibly part Greek? She has a light phenotype and lives with the comforts of white privilege.

          I didn’t know black people had white privilege.

          SexyBlack 3434, why do you want her to be black so bad?

          “Nothing wrong with being Black.” I agree but Sofia isn’t black. She’s mixed race with black ancestry.

          Comrade because she IS Black. Did you NOT read that she says she is Black? Right here on the page. She has a African-American FATHER her mother appears to be mixed-race herself. And if her mother is fully white still does not matter if that is how she identifies. Not sure what country you live in, but in the USA Black people can look like anything and it has nothing to do with how much African a person has in their blood. And in certain families, different features and colors exist. We do not separate ourselves bases on appearance. Trying to tell you that. We (African-Americans are ALL mixed-race multi-generational) regardless of skin tone. It would be redundant to call ourselves “mixed race.” We are aware of it. Just because she does not look the WAY you want a Black person to look, is not her problem but yours. If she calls herself mixed-race or multiracial that is fine too. There’re many different features and looks especially in Africa.. There is no one way to look Black.

          • comrade says:

            “There’re many different features and looks especially in Africa.”

            Yet most black people have dark skin and coarse hair, and they get treated differently because of that while a black person with fair skin and wavy hair doesn’t.

            I think we have different definitions of ‘black’.

            definition 1: black = any person with black ancestry or anyone who can trace one their ancestors to the African continent.

            definition 2: black = someone that faces racism and oppression by white people (or other) for not looking white. Someone that has to deal with adversity and stereotyping in a post colonialist world that still favors white over black and fair skin or dark.

            If you define black as the 1st definition then yes Sofia is black/AA because she’s a descendant of enslaved Africans. If you define black by the 2nd definition then no Sofia isn’t black. Yes, Sofia is part African-American but she’s not black.

        • SexyBlack 3434 says:

          Again responding to this :“There’re many different features and looks especially in Africa.”

          Yet most black people have dark skin and coarse hair, and they get treated differently because of that while a black person with fair skin and wavy hair doesn’t.

          I think we have different definitions of ‘black’.

          Sophia SAYS she is Black even if she has other ancestries. Her father is African-American. Yes, African-Americans is a lineage and Black is a race. She identifies with her Blackness. Race is a social construct. She isn’t lying about being “Black” or partially Black. What is the problem??? LOL I am not identifying Sophia, she has done that herself. If she said she is mixed race(which she is ) that is fine too. You are saying because she “looks” white that she is white which is not true especially in USA. The moment people find out someone who “looks” white is not, most times are not seen as white. Look at the movie Imitation of Life. Here is a YT video of a biracial explaining it at 5:13. That is American history. In other countries, it could be something else and that is fine. Yes, she probably does have white privilege, but she identifies with her Blackness and she corrects people when they do not know she is Black. Race, ethnicity, and ANCESTRY are all different things. She identifies with her race. You do not like she does that, but is not wrong in American terms. I get people see different things in people, but she looks white-passing to me. Which means is I can tell she has some African ancestry although appearing white. Her face looks typical “West African” to me.

          • comrade says:

            “She identifies with her Blackness.” That’s good for her.

            “You are saying because she “looks” white that she is white which is not true especially in USA.”

            I never said she’s white. I said she has white privilege and she’s mixed race with a light phenotype. To call herself black is a disservice to black people who do face oppression.

            “The moment people find out someone who “looks” white is not, most times are not seen as white. Look at the movie Imitation of Life.”

            You’re referencing a fictional film set in the 1940’s. It’s not the 1940’s anymore it’s the 21st century.

            I doubt Sofia has ever been “randomly” stopped by airport security.

      • MissMaria says:

        @SexyBlack 3434 , if Sofia has Greek ancestry then she is Greek. It’s the same thing.

    • SexyBlack 3434 says:

      Looking at the genealogy of Ted T. Alexander it appears he is mulatto and listed as Negro in the census. There could be another reason. She could be saying that because Greek people are stereotyped with coarse, curly out of control hair. https://www.ekaterinasgreekexpectations.com/how-to-tame-a-curly-greek-mane/ and Sophia have hair like that thus the reason she says half Greek with a picture of Sophia in the picture. like in the picture https://www.instagram.com/p/BNH-eItAm4k/

      • comrade says:

        You wrote the same comment three times over. I’ve seen it now. Sorry to disappoint but that’s the wrong Theodore T. Alexander. He married Patricia A. Perry in 1960.

        Sofia’s hair isn’t coarse, curly out of control. Her hair is messed up (in the pic) and a little wavy. It’s the same for all the other pictures of her as a child.

        • SexyBlack 3434 says:

          And YOU wrote the same thing three times in different ways. If you notice I responded to you and someone else which makes it TWICE. Why are your comments more relevant than mine? I am making different points and YOU do not like it. Fabolous.

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