'I stood up to Trump for slating a marginalised group' - Purcell

Roz Purcell met Mr Trump when she signed to his model agency

Lynne Kelleher

Former Miss Universe Ireland Roz Purcell revealed she once called out Donald Trump for disparaging a marginalised group.

The Tipperary beauty was left shocked by a comment by the former US president when she co-presented a show with him during her time signed to his Trump Models agency.

She met the New York tycoon when she was just 19 after competing in the Miss Universe contest in Las Vegas in 2010.

During a conversation with former President Mary McAleese on her latest Walks of Life series, the healthy living campaigner said her experience of the US tycoon was much like his public persona.

"He invited me up to his office when I joined Trump Models and said 'I'm gonna make you a star, I'm gonna make you such a big star' and he didn't", she said smiling.

"But I think we all know he is full of lies right now.

"I met him lots of times. I presented golf TV with him once up at his golf estate.

"I was shocked when he actually became president because everything that you do see on TV and you hear about him is exactly what he is like.

"I remember being shocked at some of the things he said because it just was not how anyone should speak about other people.

"I remember calling him out once, I remember he said something extremely bad about a certain marginalised group. I just said 'God's people would never say that in Ireland'.


"I quickly shut up though because I remembered I was a 19-year-old who was presenting a TV show that he owned."

She also told the former Irish president that she encountered inappropriate touching from photographers during her time as a model.

"I think it's only now when I'm heading into my 30s, I realise a lot of things that I put up with weren't okay," she said.

"I definitely think as a model being so young and travelling all over the world, I became very desensitised to things like men grabbing you, photographers touching you in areas that wouldn't be okay now.

"When you're younger you don't feel like you have a voice, when you are younger you are afraid to stand up particularly in situations where everyone else on set is putting it up with it too."

During her walk with the former president in the Tipperary hills near her family's farm, she also opened up about recovering from a serious eating disorder.

All Walks of Life is on RTÉ One on Friday, January 22 at 8.30pm