• TARGET SCHOLARS: The Council of Fashion Designers of America named the recipients of its 2003 Target/CFDA Design Initiative awards last week: Jennifer Daggy and LaToya LeFlore will each receive cash awards and one-year employment with the design and development team of Target Corp. in Minneapolis, Minn. Daggy is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati and LeFlore is a graduate of Parsons School of Design in New York. The five-year-old program is open to senior-year fashion design students, offering one or two recipients a one-year, full-time scholarship at Target, including a salary, while 10 semifinalists are awarded cash prizes, selected by a panel of CFDA members including Jason Bunin, Louis Dell’Olio, Cathy Hardwick and Stan Herman, the organization’s president.

  • ELLEN TRACY VPS: Ellen Tracy promoted two members of its design team to vice president positions last week. Joni Storgion-Knight was named vice president of design/product development for the Linda Allard Ellen Tracy collection, and Donna McKenzie was named vice president of design/product development for Company Ellen Tracy. McKenzie has been a designer with the company, which was acquired by Liz Claiborne Inc. in 2002, for 17 years, while Storgion-Knight has worked there for 18 years. Both will take on additional oversight responsibilities for the development and design of the collections, as well as coordinating the design teams, the company said.

  • DILLARD’S DEBT WATCH: Weakness at Dillard’s Inc. prompted Standard & Poor’s to place the firm’s corporate credit and senior unsecured rating, currently residing at “BB-plus,” on CreditWatch with negative implications. After what S&P analyst Gerald Hirschberg termed in a statement, “a relatively good year in 2002,” the retailer came up with “disappointing” first-quarter results and a 7 percent comparable-store sales drop in May. “The economy and low consumer confidence are taking a heavier-than-average toll on Dillard’s business,” he said.

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