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2013 November 18

Ashley Olsen, Prabal Gurung, And Kate Spade's Deborah Lloyd Tapped As New CFDA Board Members

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Ashley Olsen, Prabal Gurung Ashley Olsen, Prabal Gurung
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(NEW YORK) The Council of Fashion Designers of America has announced the election of a fresh trio of board members. Ashley Olsen, Prabal Gurung and Kate Spade’s Deborah Lloyd were chosen this month. The trifecta will succeed Yeohlee Teng, Kenneth Cole and Isabel Toledo—The former members will go on to join the Emeritus Board, joining the likes of Calvin Klein, Carolina Herrera, Nicole Miller, and many others.

Olsen, who is the co-designer of The Row, Elizabeth and James and Olsenboye, was elected to the board sans her twin, Mary-Kate. The duo became the youngest members of the CFDA in 2009, when they were inducted at the age of 23. Both sisters are also the co-presidents of Dualstar Entertainment Group, the umbrella under which their three labels were created. Founded in 2007, The Row is their luxury line, which nabbed a nom for the Swarovski Award for Womenswear in 2011 and took home the prize for the Womenswear Designer in 2012. Elizabeth and James was created in the same year as The Row, but is targeted to a more contemporary audience, as is its offshoot, Textile Elizabeth and James. For the junior set, the co-designers also established Olsenboye, a youthful collection exclusive to JCPenney.

Gurung launched his eponymous label in 2009. The designer was born in Singapore and raised in Nepal, began his career in New Delhi, and finished his education in New York at Parsons. He's also an alum of Cynthia Rowley and Bill Blass, the latter of which he spent half a decade at before stepping out on his own. Gurung was honored as a runner-up of the 2010 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and he was the recipient of the 2011 CFDA Swarovski Award for Womenswear. In addition to designing for his own label, he is also the chief designer at Onward Kashiyama's ICB brand. 

As for Lloyd? The Kate Spade label has been in the CFDA fold for nearly two decades, The label was honored with the Perry Ellis Award for accessories in 1995, and nabbed the America’s New Fashion Talent award in accessories the following year. Under co-founder Kate Spade’s helm, the label also took home the Best Accessory Designer of the Year in 1999. After Spade stepped down from her namesake brand in 2007, Lloyd jumped in as the brand’s president. Since Lloyd's arrival, the company has expanded to include five new product categories and has also been proactive in promoting emerging designers both within and beyond the CFDA. The label's diffusion line, Saturday, participated in CFDA’s partnership with Harvard Business School this past summer, where students took on a 10-week business development project. Kate Spade also teamed up with the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund to mentor five designers over a three-month period, allowing a chance to help build their brand. The winner, Joseph Altuzarra, was honored with a full page ad in Vogue’s September issue.

The three designers stepping down from the board will still retain their titles as an honorary measure, but will not be involved in day-to-day work at the CFDA. Teng founded her brand in 1981; as for her lasting impact, Teng has been very active in preserving the Garment District, and her designs can be found in Costume Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Cole has racked up a plethora of awards over his 25-year career, designing practical, sleek basics paired with cheeky campaigns. His CFDA honors include his Humanitarian of the Year win in 1997, the Dom Pérignon Award in 1996, and a nom as Menswear Designer of The Year in 2000. Toledo pieced together her first collection in 1985 and was named a CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalist in 2005. She works in tandem with her husband, Ruben Toledo. Recently, the Toledos announced their plans to roll out a collaboration with plus-size retailer Lane Bryant

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