These days brand ambassador association is so common – think Myer, you’ll think of Jen, David Jones, Jessica Gomes, but Chloe Maxwell was ahead of the times – wearing the label, rather than the label wearing her! If you’re an 80s baby, like me, you’ll probably still think of Chloe as one of the most successful models of our generation – the Jeans West girl. These days she’s a mother of four, still making regular appearances on our screens, has followed a career on FOX 8 with an acting role in Australian feature Under the Radar, the reality singing contest It Takes Two and a best-selling biography Living with Max. More recently she stood on the sideline holding the sweat towel for husband, former dual international Union and League great, Mat Rogers’ successful stint on Dancing With The Stars. Lunch with Liz caught up with Chloe at the new Surfers Paradise The 4217 precinct, for a bite to eat at Salt Meats Cheese.
WHERE WE WENT: Salt Meats Cheese, The 4217, Surfers Paradise.
WHAT WE ATE: The Black Lobster tail on a squid ink pizza w fontina, fior di latte, garlic oil and thyme $27 (White base available on request). Grazing Board NY Meat Packers Plate: selection of Premium SMC cured Meats with French & Italian soft and hard cheeses $22.50
WHAT WE SIPPED: Aperol Spritz: Aperol, Prosecco & Soda Water $12, Negroni: Yarra Valley’s Four Pillars Gin with Antico red vermouth and Campari $12
WHAT CHLOE WORE: Dress Camilla, Shoes, Manolo Blahnik
WHAT LIZ WORE: Bec & Bridge, Australianflavour.com.au
Mother, Wife, TV Presenter, Actress, Model, Author, Ambassador… what title do you go by?
“All I know is that when I travel overseas I just write media!”
This seasons Dancing With The Stars wanted a celebrity couple, was there any chance?
“Not this year, they had approached us in the past but not this season. Mat’s trying to get me on next season now though. He’s already paired me up and found someone tall enough because I’m quite a big unit, let’s face it. It was good for Mat to do it on his own though as it was so far out of his comfort zone and I pretty much signed him up for it as it was something I would love to do and he’s always signed me up for things, like I’ll just get an email saying ‘congratulations, you’re doing the Melbourne marathon’, and I’m like, ‘oh, great’. He does stuff like that to me all the time, so I figured I had to get my own back and sign him up for something that I would prefer to be doing than him! He did great. He’s never danced, ever. When we’ve gone out sometimes he would do like this pelvis thrust move and I’d say ‘no you just stand there and maybe we just chat’. But with his personality and knowing he doesn’t like to do things not well, of course he just threw himself into it and was training from 9-3pm every single day.” *He came fourth.
Did you ever consider changing your last name with marriage?
“I did, but my passport photo is too good. I will eventually, so I have the same last name as my kids. But I think Mat Maxwell has a nice ring to it.”
How did you get your big break?
“I was walking down Pitt Street Mall running errands, I was about 15 years old at the time and my now manager Ursula Hufnagl was doing a show with A Current Affair how she could pick models off the street and I walked into frame and she said “that girl” and the rest is history. Next thing I was on a plane jetting off to Fiji shooting campaigns.”
You’ve interviewed the likes of Tom Cruise, Vin Diesel, Richard Branson, Russell Brand, Nicole Kidman… who’s the most memorable for you?
“Russell Brand was very memorable, he was doing a press junket and had been talking to a bunch of people before me and he decided during our interview to pull a banana out of his pants and it had obviously been in there for several interviews prior to mine. I was chatting to him and he pulled it out of his crotch and was like “what’s this then?” and I said “it appears to be a pretty warm and slightly bruised banana” I think he was trying to throw me! He was definitely an interesting character.”
For so many it is such a great dream, and such a huge feat – If you could give a sincere piece of advice to a young girl wanting to be in the TV industry what would it be?
“Just go for it, be bold and do work experience. I mean I don’t have a degree, a Bachelor of Journalism or anything like that, I literally just walked into Channel [V] and boldly asked them to give me a job. I think that hands on experience is what you need, the media industry changes and evolves so much.”
How about becoming a mum? What changes did you experience?
“Regardless of what career you’re coming from, it’s a life changing experience where you realise that being a mum is one of the most underrated occupations in the world and it certainly gives you perspective on life and things that are important. A lot of the things I thought were important weren’t necessarily, once I had a child.”
How does life on the Gold Coast compare to Sydney?
“I miss Sydney but we have such a good quality of life here on the Gold Coast – it’s the selfless mum thing again! It’s really good for the kids here and Max with his disabilities is really in a good spot here.”
You founded the charity 4asdkids in 2009 and still work towards creating awareness and acceptance of Autism. Tell me about when Max was diagnosed?
“He was diagnosed just after he turned one, and it was pretty full on because I actually didn’t want to believe there was anything wrong with him. He was my first child and Mat already had two and he kept trying to tell me that things were different with Max, but it wasn’t until my dad told me that he thought Max had Autism that I did a lot of research and realised that if this was the case he needed to be in early intervention because it seemed to have the best statistics for children moving forward. It was ABA therapy 4 hours a day, 5 days a week and we saw some great results really quickly with them and that’s when we realized we were so fortunate that we could afford this expensive, $40,000 a year, care for Max and we needed to do something to help other families in a similar position with their child be able to afford this kind of help too.”
Kara’s question…. When you go out for breaky what do you usually order? “I’m an eggs benny fan. And coffee of course, a lot of coffee.”