Early life, family, educational background
American television producer, Ilusión Millan (née Wilson) was born on 18 September 1976, in the USA, into a middle-class family – her father owned a precision machine business. Ilusión is a devoted Catholic.
Who is Cesar Millan?
Cesar Felipe Millan Favela, born on 27 August 1969, in Culiacán, Mexico, is a famous Dog Expert and Whisperer. Cesar grew up on a farm, and from a young age had a special relationship with canines. He was nicknamed El Perrero, which means “the dog man.” Cesar became an illegal immigrant to the US when he crossed the border alone, aged 21, with only $100 to his name. He was working as a limousine cleaner when he met Ilusión. His ultimate American dream was to become a famous rehabilitator for troubled dogs.
Cesar’s first job involving dogs was at a dog-grooming shop He then founded the Pacific Point Canine Academy, and one of his first A-list clients was Jada Pinkett-Smith. A few years later, Cesar opened the Dog Psychology Center in Los Angeles, for large breed dogs. From this success, Cesar began working on a pilot episode for his television show, “Dog Whisperer,” in 2002. The pilot was aired in 2004 on the National Geographic Channel, and follows Cesar as a dog rehabilitator. The show became extremely popular. Cesar has several businesses – he runs a Dog Psychology Center, a 43-acre (174 015m²) mecca which he called ‘Disneyland for Dogs.’
The Cesar Millan Incorporation consists of any work outside of his television show, according to The New York Times including ‘speaking engagements; executive leadership seminars; a line of organic dog food, fortified water, shampoos and toys … and the charitable foundation financed by an undisclosed percentage of the company’s revenue’. In 2009, Cesar launched the magazine “Cesar’s Way”, which is focused on dog training and building strong relationships between owners and their pets. Cesar went on to make a documentary series, “Leader of the Pack,” in 2013, and in 2014, began a new television series, “Cesar 911.” Cesar officially received his Permanent Resident Status in the United States in 2010.
— Cesar Millan (@cesarmillan) January 1, 2020
In August 2010, Cesar began dating Jahira Dar, a saleslady from the Dominican Republic. Jahira is 16 years Cesar’s junior, having been born in 1985. The couple announced their engagement on their trip to Athens, Greece, on 25 April 2016, on Instagram – in an exclusive interview with People magazine, Cesar shared that Jahira, ‘Embodies the principles that I prize the most.’ Cesar earns $170,000 a month, which totals $2 million annually, and his estimated net worth is $25 million.
Ilusión’s first job was as a preschool teacher, but as Cesar Millan Inc. grew, she became more involved, the co-CEO of the company, and was instrumental in the company’s work to support charities which promote the health and wellbeing of animals.
She designed the “Illusion Collar,” which helps control difficult dogs, especially when training them to walk when attached to leads properly. Ilusión served as co-executive producer and associate producer of “Dog Whisperer” from 2006-2012, during which she worked on over 55 episodes over eight seasons, and even appeared in a few. The show was highly successful, attracting millions of viewers, and was eventually broadcast in over 80 countries. In 2009, “Dog Whisperer” was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award under the category, “Outstanding Reality Program.”
Following their divorce in 2010, the “Cesar and Ilusión Millan Foundation” was renamed “The Millan Foundation.”
Ilusión worked with Yale University to create Mutt-i-grees – a curriculum based on Cesar’s teachings – to guide young children on how to treat, interact with and take care of animals, particularly pets.
When Ilusión was 17 years old, she saw Cesar Millan across the crowd at an ice rink, and knew she wanted to marry him. Cesar was 24 years old at the time, living in a one-room apartment with six dogs. A friend warned Cesar that he could be arrested, or even deported for dating an underage girl, so he chose to break-off their relationship. In an interview, Ilusión recalls when she visited him at his apartment, ‘I came to the door and pressed the bell, and he said, “I can’t see you anymore.” It killed me.’ However, that was not the end of their love.
In 1994 on Ilusión’s 18th birthday, she once again went to Cesar’s apartment, and the two began dating. Ilusión soon fell pregnant, unplanned, which prompted Cesar to propose, and they quickly married – Cesar was 25 and Ilusión was 18. Cesar paid for the wedding, and even washed the limousine they rode in after the ceremony. They lived together in Los Angeles, California. In 1995, Ilusión gave birth to their first child, son Andre Millan. A year later, Ilusión almost died from gallbladder issues, and had emergency surgery. Cesar did not visit her in the hospital until days after the surgery, and his short visit only lasted for two hours. He saw her health issues as an annoyance, and focused on his work when she returned home.
Cesar later said that he treated Ilusión as he had seen his father and uncles treat women, only concentrating on the negatives and trying to keep her, ‘calm and submissive.’ Soon after, Ilusión left home with Andre and gave Cesar an ultimatum concerning their marriage – he was shocked. Cesar agreed to marriage counselling, and their marriage lasted for another 15 years, during which Ilusión gave birth to their second son, Calvin, in 2001. Cesar would often call Ilusión his Man Whisperer, and called his wife ‘a great business-mind.’ In agreeing, Ilusión once said, “We’re what I call Mr Talent and Mrs Brains. You can’t have one without the other.” To which Cesar said: “My wife rehabilitated me.”
In July 2010, Ilusión filed for divorce under irreconcilable differences. A few months later, Cesar attempted to commit suicide due to the heartache of Ilusión ‘s request for a divorce, and the death of his dog, Daddy. Finalised on 21 April 2012, according to TMZ, she received a once-off payment of $400,000, monthly alimony of approximately $30,000, and an extra $10,000 for monthly child support. Ilusión also received full-custody of both Andre and Calvin, but the boys remain close to both parents. Ilusión and Cesar insist that they are still friends and are fully committed to co-parenting. Ironically, before their divorce, there was a television pilot for a show focussing on their ‘successful’ marriage.
The separation showed that Cesar values privacy. According to TMZ, the divorce documents stated that any, ‘intimate, personal or private information about the other party … including details of their personal or sexual relationships’ must remain confidential and ‘photograph, film, videotape, recording … which is not commercially available’ must remain private.
Ilusión has brown hair and dark brown eyes. She is 5ft 6ins (1.6m) tall, and has a curvaceously shaped body.
Net worth and salary
Ilusión has an estimated net worth of $18 million, as of late 2019.