Maryam Elisha was born Maryam Rikoto Elisha, a Nigerian model, beauty queen, and fashion designer known for her fashion brand Rikaoto by ME. She is from Kebbi state but was born in Kano state and is the youngest of seven children.
She had her primary and secondary school education in Kano state before relocating to Lagos state to study English Language at the University of Lagos. After graduation from the university, she went to the New Jersey Fashion School, in the United States, where she trained for eight months in fashion designing. Her brand Rikaoto By Me was one of the fashion houses commissioned to make clothes for the ex-president of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan.
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Maryam began her modelling career while in secondary school and eventually worked as a model for close to eight years. She was the maiden face of Airtel Nigeria (Zain), when it was Vmobile. She also modeled for other top brands like Delta Soap, Sterling Bank of Nigeria, MTN Nigeria, Lucozade Boost and Diamond Bank.
As a university undergraduate, she entered and won the Miss Valentine Beauty Pageant, 2007 and in 2008, she collaborated with another pageant winner, Damilola Otunbanjo, Sisi Oge of Lagos, to advocate for good health care and campaign against stigmatization of people living with HIV/AIDS. This brought her the Miss Environment title, by the Lagos State Waste Management Authority, and recognition by the former governor of Lagos state, Mr. Babatunde Fashola. Maryam also contested in the Miss Nigeria beauty pageant 2013. She was also named one of the 20 most influential pageant personalities in Nigeria. In 2017, Maryam was awarded the Pageant Designer of the Year and Pageant Couturier of the Year.