Elin Maria Pernilla Nordegren (Swedish pronunciation: [ˈeːlɪn ˈnɔɖəɡreːn]; born January 1, 1980) is a Swedish model, and is the ex-wife of professional golfer Tiger Woods.
Nordegren was born in Stockholm, Sweden. Her mother, Barbro Holmberg, is a politician and the former Swedish migration and asylum policy minister, and the former Governor of Gävleborg County. Her father, Thomas Nordegren, is a radio journalist who served as a bureau chief in Washington, D.C. She has an older brother, Axel, and a twin sister, Josefin. Nordegren and her sister worked odd summer jobs and as cashiers in supermarkets to finance their studies. She started modeling in 2000, and appeared on the cover of Cafe Sport magazine in the summer of 2000.
Nordegren took a job in a Stockholm clothing store called Champagne, where she met Mia Parnevik, wife of Swedish golfer Jesper Parnevik, who hired Nordegren as the nanny to their children, a job that required her to move full-time to the U.S. He introduced her to Woods during the 2001 Open Championship. After Woods' subsequent infidelity was revealed, Parnevik was quoted as having said, "I'm kind of filled with sorrow for Elin since me and my wife are at fault for hooking her up with him, and we probably thought he was a better guy than he is." [People Magazine] Previously, Woods had asked for a year to be introduced to Nordegren, who was seeing someone else at the time. "She had no interest in Tiger and he was OK with that," Mia Parnevik said. "There was a big line of single golfers wanting to meet her. They were gaga over her." She had hopes at the time of becoming a child psychiatrist. In November 2003, Woods and Nordegren attended the Presidents Cup tournament in South Africa and became officially engaged when Woods proposed at the luxury Shamwari Game Reserve.
They were married in October 2004, by the 19th hole of the Sandy Lane resort in Barbados. Woods rented the entire complex for a week, including three golf courses and 110 rooms, costing almost $2 million.
Shortly after Nordegren's relationship with Woods became public, nude photographs purporting to be of Nordegren began circulating on the Internet, which were established to be fakes. Despite the debunking, in 2006, Irish magazine The Dubliner published the nude photographs and stated they were of Nordegren. On November 16, 2006, Nordegren filed a libel suit against The Dubliner. Nordegren won 125,000 Euros, and The Dubliner was required to publish a lengthy apology in a variety of venues.
In 2007, Woods announced the birth of the couple's daughter, Sam Alexis Woods, a day after finishing second in the U.S. Open. On September 2, 2008, Woods announced they were expecting another child in late winter. Nordegren gave birth to a boy, Charlie Axel, in 2009.
In December 2009, her marriage to Woods was the subject of extensive media coverage after Woods admitted to infidelity, which had been revealed following his single-vehicle accident near the family's Florida home. Woods subsequently announced he would take an "indefinite break" from golf to work on his marriage. These efforts were unsuccessful, however, as Nordegren and Woods finalised their divorce in the Bay County Circuit Court in Panama City, Florida, on August 23, 2010. Nordegren's legal team included her sister, Josefin (who is licensed to practice law in England and Sweden) and several of Josefin's U.S. colleagues at international law firm McGuireWoods.
Using the $100 million she received from her divorce from Woods, she purchased a $12 million Florida mansion, which had been built in the 1920s. She had the entire structure demolished after an architect advised that it made better sense to start over than to try bringing the home up to current hurricane safety codes. Before demolishing the home in December 2011, she allowed Habitat for Humanity to come into the home for four weeks and salvage anything they found of value. Many valuable contents of the estate went on the auction block at a Habitat for Humanity warehouse. Among the items donated to Habitat were a 12-foot (3.7 m) fountain with water spouting out of 3 lion's mouths, 5 Sub-Zero refrigerators, 14 vanities, temperature-controlled wine coolers, and other furniture.
In May 2014 Nordegren graduated from Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, with a degree in psychology, receiving the Outstanding Senior award.