NEW YORK — In four decades, Ralph Lauren has made philanthropy a key component of his career, championing causes from workplace equality to HIV/AIDS and cancer.
On Tuesday evening, Empire State Pride Agenda, the New York organization working toward equality and justice for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered communities, honored Lauren with the Douglas W. Jones Leadership Award at its annual fall dinner.
Lauren himself was unable to attend due to the death of Susan Lauren, his brother Jerry’s wife, earlier that day. But he was well-represented at the dinner by Roger Farah, Polo Ralph Lauren Corp.’s president and chief operating officer; Jacki Nemerov, executive vice president; Wayne Meichner, president and chief operating officer of Polo’s Retail Group; Oscar Cohen, executive director of the Polo Ralph Lauren Foundation; Alfredo Paredes, executive vice president of global creative services, Polo store development and home collection design, and Charles Fagan, executive vice president of global retail brand development.
Emcee Whoopi Goldberg added a light touch to the evening, joking about Colin Powell’s “coming out” and raising awareness to the continued fight for equality.
Gov. David Paterson received thunderous applause and several standing ovations — “Which movie was I in to receive this award?” he joked — and his keynote address highlighted advances in gay rights and the need to do even more.
“Now that’s a governor I feel a whole lot better with on our side,” said Alan Van Capelle, Empire State Pride Agenda’s executive director.
Van Capelle then gave a heartfelt speech about Lauren, and told the crowd the designer had set a powerful example about making fundamental change happen, with the knowledge that even the smallest actions can have a large impact globally.
“Ralph Lauren has understood this,” he said. “This is a leadership award to inspire people to be their better selves, and that is what Ralph Lauren has done his entire life.”
From overseeing America’s fastest-growing speciality retailers to codifying cool, WWD talked to the women who are leading the way for the future of beauty. Check out our Instagram Stories to see how these women built today and are creating tomorrow. (📸: @hannah_khymych) #wwdbeauty
For @laperlalingerie's spring 2018 show, the brand chose to host their event at @thevenetianmacao. With Chinese megastars @bingbing_fan and @hubing in attendance, La Perla debuted a rock ‘n’ roll-inspired collection. The show marked the start of Sands Macao Fashion Week, which runs from October 19 to 24 — the city’s first such event. Pictured here are models backstage with glimmering eyes. #wwdfashion (📷: Cheuk-Yin To)
Trending for spring 2018: top stitch design. Gone are the days of stitch just for seams — designers are using the once-minimal detail to create strong decorative elements. (📷: Paola Testa; Styled by @andrew_shang) #wwdfashion
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)