Regina Askia-Williams (born Imaobong Regina Askia Usoro, Lagos, Nigeria, 1967) is a Nigerian-born, American-based registered nurse (RN), healthcare and educational activist, television producer, writer, and public speaker, who found fame as an actress and model. In 1988, Askia-Williams – a former Medical student who had transferred from the University of Calabar to the University of Lagos – was crowned Miss Unilag. That same year, she competed in the MBGN 1988 contest. Though she was highly tipped to win the contest by the audience and the outgoing Miss Intercontinental, Joan Maynard, she placed second. However, she became titleholder the following year when winner Bianca Onoh resigned. In 1990, Askia-Williams represented Nigeria at Miss Charm International held in Leningrad, Russia, and came second. She also made history by becoming the first Nigerian at Miss International in Japan, where she made an impact with the most outstanding traditional costume. After gaining public recognition in Nigeria as a beauty pageant winner, Askia-Williams began a modelling career. As a model, Askia-Williams appeared in several Nigerian print and television commercials including Kessingsheen Hair Care, boutique chain Collectibles, and most famously, Visine. She also worked on several runway shows. In 2007, she modelled for the 2000-N-Six face cleansing range alongside her daughter, model Stephanie Hornecker. In 2005 she hosted a fashion show at the Nigerian Embassy in New York City to raise awareness for the plight of children's social amenities in Nigeria, and in 2006, she hosted a charity fashion show at Lehman College in the Bronx, New York, which displayed the creations of top African designers and her own label Regine Fashions. Askia-Williams's acting break came in 1993, when she played gold-digger Tokunbo Johnson in Nigerian soap Fortunes (later Mega Fortunes) on NTA Network, a role which earned her critical acclaim and roles in Nollywood movies. She has received several awards for her performances – including one for "Best Actress in Nigeria" by Afro Hollywood London in 2000 – and has produced several television shows and films. Askia-Williams starred in several "Nollywood" films during the 1990s and early 2000s, most of which were filmed to be released directly to video, reaching a wide audience in Nigeria and elsewhere in Africa such as Tanzania and Ghana. She became one of Nigeria's biggest acting celebrities. Askia-Williams' films, and other Nollywood films are regularly broadcast by Nigerian television networks, including ITV, StarTV, and the state broadcaster TVT. Askia-Williams was compared to Elizabeth Taylor for her fame, and was paid around N300,000 for a starring role, on par with other top Nigerian actresses.