Here’s a look at 10 hardworking couples who are thriving in love this Valentine’s Day.
Salim Akil and Mara Brock Akil
She writes the scripts, and he shoots ’em. It’s a solid plan, and the family business is working. Mara Brock Akil and her team have penned high-quality programming about the richness of black female life since the mid-1990s. She’s the woman behind franchises like Girlfriends, The Game and the juicy Being Mary Jane sitcom on BET. Salim Akil has done directorial work on several of those projects and, most notably, the 2011 movie Jumping the Broom.
Kevin Durant and Monica Wright
It’s Love & Basketball personified. Durant and Wright (yes, you read that correctly—she has the same name as the lead female character in the 2000 iconic film) are both superb professional basketball players. And as life sometimes imitates art, they fell in love and last July became engaged. Wright helped her team, the Minnesota Lynx, win the 2013 WNBA championship. Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Durant is perfectly OK with the fact that his fiancee was the first person to bring home a basketball championship ring. “She’s the better player,” he gushed, adding, “I was proud of how she helped her team win a championship. It was kind of tears of joy.”
Sanya Richards-Ross and Aaron Ross
Olympic gold-medal track star Sanya Richards-Ross’ marriage to NFL cornerback Aaron Ross was featured on an episode of Platinum Weddings in 2010. Their reality show, Sanya’s Glam & Gold, which premiered last July, shows the Rosses juggling their professional and personal lives.
Kerry Washington and Nnamdi Asomugha
News that Washington had secretly wed Asomugha last June sent shock waves throughout social media. Scandal’s media darling announced that she was pregnant several months afterward. A hit show, a marriage and, soon, a baby, all within the span of three years. Washington is one lucky babe. As for her beau, after a successful career in the NFL, Asomugha achieved a major milestone last year by officially retiring from the Oakland Raiders.
Meagan Good and DeVon Franklin
Good once described how a string of rocky relationships with men motivated her to strengthen her relationship with God. She even went celibate for a few months before marrying studio executive and motivational speaker Franklin. The married duo are now inseparable on red carpets. This union seems to have rejuvenated their respective careers.
Jurnee Smollett-Bell and Josiah Bell
Smollett-Bell is no longer the little girl from Full House or the young and sassy soothsayer-in-the-making adolescent from Eve’s Bayou. She’s married to musician Bell. While filming last year’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor, Smollett-Bell described how she had a hard time relating to her character because she could not imagine ever cheating on her spouse. How sweet.
Carmelo Anthony and LaLa Anthony
LaLa Anthony is a jack-of-all-trades: reality-TV star, host and New York Times best-selling author with a clothing line and cosmetics line. She’s also besties with just about every socialite who’s hot on the scene, including Kim Kardashian, Ciara and Kelly Rowland. It’s nice to see that these roles seem to orbit around her marriage to New York Knicks powerhouse Carmelo Anthony. Both are native New Yorkers.
Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union
Three-time NBA champion Wade popped the question to actress Union a few months ago. A few weeks later, we learned that Wade had fathered a child several months earlier with another woman, and we were told that the child was conceived during a brief split with Union. Everyone’s got an opinion about the legitimacy of that story and whether Union should stay or, as one Facebook follower posted, run. It seems that Union is choosing to stand by her man. They shot a cute family video during a recent holiday photo shoot.
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend
Forget how models are “supposed to act”—Sports Illustrated cover model Teigen has a mind of her own, along with biting opinions that’s she’s not afraid to share with the world. It gets her into hot water every now and then, but that’s the thing musician Legend says he likes most about his wife.
Kanye West and Kim Kardashian
It seems that no two people were more meant for each other than West and Kardashian. They’re slaves for fashion and are madly in love with themselves and each other. They named their daughter North because she represented the zenith of their union. Perfect.