Katie Cleary is an actress and model. She is the creator of award winning documentary Give Me Shelter.
Birthday: 21st September 1981
Born: Chicago, USA
Famous for: Actress, Model
Katie Cleary was raised on the North Shore of Chicago. Cleary is an only child and was raised by her mother.
Katie enrolled into Carthage College in Wisconsin on a track scholarship. She graduated with a Business and Marketing Degree while working as a part-time model.
In 2003 Cleary was a contestant on America’s Next Top Model. It was the only season to feature a cast of only 10 finalists. All later cycles featured at least 12 finalists. She finished in 9th place.
In 2004 Katie took a real estate position in Chicago and enrolled in acting classes whilst continuing to model.
Cleary moved to Los Angeles and landed the role of briefcase beauty #11 on TV show Deal or no Deal which she continued for over four years. She also continued to make minor appearances in other TV shows such as Freddie, Related and Entourage.
Katie modelled for a number of popular brand advertising campaigns and appeared on the covers of magazines such as Best Body, Woman and Bridget Marie.
In 2010 Katie Cleary married Andrew Stern. Stern founded Seed Corn Advertising and appeared on TV show Millionaire Matchmaker in 2010.
In April 2014 Andrew Stern filed for divorce from Cleary. In June 2014 Stern committed suicide at a shooting range. Stern was quoted as being in deep depression over his divorce and for medical reasons.
In 2014 Katie Cleary was the lead, producer and creator of Give Me Shelter which was shown on Netflix and has won several awards. The documentary uncovers the most prevalent issues in the animal world through the eyes of individuals dedicating their lives to protecting them daily. Katie is passionate about rescuing animals and she has helped find homes for hundreds of abused and unwanted animals.
After continuing to appear on TV and in short movies Katie Cleary’s acting career is blossoming. In 2017 Katie Cleary is working on a number of productions. Short movie No Time for Dreaming by Alexander Gardels and movies The Madness Within as Samantha; The Wind of Heaven as Mandy Lang.
*Photo credits provided in references section below where possible. View a list of photographers here.
Sargent: Congrats on your Award-Winning Documentary ‘Give Me Shelter’! How long have you been an animal rights activist?
KC: I have been an animal rights activist my whole life. Even since I started rescuing animals at a young age I wanted to be their voice and do what I could to help them.
Sargent: Prior to this documentary what are some activities you’ve been a part of?
KC: I produced my first charity event, “Diamonds Not Fur” in 2011 hosted by Betty White which raised money for the spcaLA and the “Fur Free West Hollywood” movement. In 2012, I produced “Stars 4 Stripes” hosted by Alison Eastwood to save the last of the 3,500 tigers left in the wild. I volunteer at “Shambala” Sanctuary with my friend Tippi Hedren, as well as The Wildlife Waystation with my friend Martine Collette. I also help out at the California Wildlife Center where they rehabilitate Native California Wildlife and re-release them back into the wild.
Sargent: In your documentary you choose to shoot from an interesting angle, what made you decide to shoot from such a personal angle?
KC: We wanted the viewers to feel like they are in the movie with the people who dedicate their lives to saving these animals, to see their struggle. To see their hope for a better life. To understand how helpless they are and how much they need our help. If you watch Super Bowl ads, I swear at least half of the commercials had animals in them! Everyone loves animals. Animals sell products. But we only see the fairy tale version of what goes on with animals around the world. Not the real life version and that was one of our goals – to show the good and bad and to raise awareness to such crucial animal issues that are going on around the world today. Such issues would otherwise not have been exposed if not for this film. Because of this film many animals will be saved because it will educate the viewers on how to do their part to save them.
Sargent: I read that this has been a lifelong project, how did this begin and when was the turning point that you knew this was an issue?
I have always loved and rescued animals from as long as I can remember I wanted to be a veterinarian and have my own animal rescue. I feel like my dream came true in a sense being able to raise awareness through my career in the entertainment business which gives me a platform to talk about these issues on a grander scale and have people listen. The turning point came after the first event I produced by myself in Hollywood. I knew if I could tackle that, I could do anything. That is when I started Peace 4 Animals.