Ufuoma Stacey Ejenobor-McDermott is a Nigerian actor, film-maker and former model. From modelling to acting to producing and directing, Ufuoma has shown that she’s a versatile entertainer.
Early life and background of Ufuoma McDermott
Ufuoma was born on the 23rd of April, 1981 in Benin City to Nigerian parents who hail from Delta State, Nigeria. She spent most of childhood years in Benin City and Jos before moving to Lagos where she has lived for the greater part of her life and still resides presently. When she was 7 years old, her father coined a pet name for her, Isio (which means “star” in Urhobo). She was named after the star actress of the TELEFEST programme organised by NTA Benin, The Pot of Life. Due to her frequent movement, she attended three schools for her early education. She attended Alama Private School, Jos, Plateau state, Tunwase Nursery and primary school, Ikeja, Lagos and Molly International Nursery and primary, Ajao Estate for her nursery and primary education. For her secondary school education, she attended Federal Government College, Odogbolu, Ogun State.
The dark-skinned beauty holds a degree in French Language and master’s degree in Public and International Affairs from the University of Lagos. She also obtained certifications and diplomas from Alliance Française and NIIT. Being a lover of knowledge, she went ahead to study acting at New York Film Academy, Los Angeles and film-making at Dov Simen’s Hollywood Film Institute. 2013 saw her bagging a degree in Human resource management from the London Business School. She was one of the Nollywood stars sponsored by AFRIFF to be part of the Relativity Education program held in the United States.
Her Modelling Career
Ufuoma commenced her career in the entertainment industry as a model in 2000. She started out as a photographic model and later moved on to the runway and beauty pageants. In 2000, she took part in two mini-pageants, won the Miss Ebony beauty pageant and participated in her first national pageant: Miss Commonwealth, where she earned the Miss Congeniality prize. The ex- beauty queen emerged 1st runner up in the queen Afrik beauty pageant. In 2003, she contested in the Queen of all Nations beauty pageant (Dubra Fufeyin) where she was again the 1st runner up. 2004 saw her contesting in the Miss Nigeria beauty pageant and emerging the 1st runner up. Soon after, she was crowned Miss Earth Nigeria and thus went ahead to represent the country at the Miss Earth 2004.
Her Acting Career
Ufuoma made her entry in Nollywood in February 2004. She made her acting debut in Zeb Ejiro’s The President Must Not Die and since then she’s featured in numerous movies like Life and Death, Guy on the Line, Edge of Paradise, Wives on Strike and others.
In January, 2018, the ‘wives on strike” star replicated her roles as “Mama Baby”, “Women Call Leader” and “Sister Esther” in the stage production Hear Word!. The play which was first premiered in Lagos, Nigeria made its international debut at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It returned for the second year in a row to the same Harvard. The play centres on issues affecting women in the society.
In July 2019, Ufuoma set up a live-theater experience at the Eko Hotel and Towers in Lagos, tagged “The USM Show with Ufuoma McDermott”. The event was a blend of live music, dance performances and a debut of her stage production “The Magic of a Dream“. Several renowned actors like Femi Branch, Chioma Akpotha, Offiong Anthony (Thin Tall Tony), Akah Nnani and Zara Udofia-Ejoh were featured in the stage play. She made her directorial debut in film Christmas is coming in 2013. The movie was later released in November 2017 in anticipation of the Christmas holidays. She exhibited her producing skills with the release of What Just Happened in cinemas across Nigeria.
The actor-turned-director has bagged endorsement deals with with cosmetic company, Total Beauty Skin Care and Friska Farms Limited, makers of Friska Herbal teas.
Ufuoma McDermott’s Relationship and Family Life
On April 23, 2010, Ufuoma got married to Steven McDermott. They’ve been married for ten years now and are blessed with two children. The former model officially changed her name to Ufuoma McDermott on 23 May 2014 at a Lagos high court.
Awards and Nominations
Best Actress in a TV series Nominee – Nigeria Entertainment Awards 2011
Actor of the Year 2011 Nominee- The Future Awards
Best Actress nominee – Golden Nymph Awards 2010 (Monte Carlo Television Festival)
Best Actress in a Drama series nominee, Terracotta TV and Film Awards
Go Red Africa, Best Female Model, 2007
African Youth Society, Role Model Award, 2009
Represented Nigeria at the Miss Earth 2004 beauty pageant.
McDermott was a speaker at TEDx Rayfield, which held in December 2017
Ufuoma McDermott’s Net Worth
The popular Nollywood actress is one of the celebrities who’s been able to strike a balance between their career and family. She is estimated to be worth $1 million dollars.