THE ULTIMATE SUMMIT TO BUILD YOUR SWIMWEAR, RESORTWEAR OR SUMMER LIFESTYLE BRAND
Check back often as Speakers are Confirmed
Creative Director/Founder of FATRA
Akilah makes handbags from recycled leather and recycled plastic. The handbags are used as a spider web to draw people in to engage in conversation around environmentalism, class and race within the sustainable fashion industry....And at large. Basically, reimagining luxury fashion by reprogramming how people think of their relationship to waste!
"FATRA" is Creole for what overflows our landfills & chokes the life force of our waterways - trash. We aim to revolutionize the way society thinks about trash; to shift the paradigm from indifference to responsibility through creative design.While our environment is seeing an over abundance in waste, communities in the global south (and the pacific islands more specifically) account for a fraction of the waste created; but are affected the most by drastic climate changes. FATRA is dedicated to transforming recycled, natural, and vintage materials into high-quality handmade goods in collaboration with other sustainable design teams that analyze creative solutions to alleviate waste buildup. We believe cradle-to-cradle design will enhance the quality of life for all, while simultaneously maintaining balance within our ecosystem. We believe in the power of diversity that the hands create.Not only in the beauty of differences, but the strength that lies within; we believe that items produced with consideration for nature and the livelihood of others carries a sense of care, love, and compassion that transfers to its wearer.
We believe in availability of clean air, fresh water and public access to natural landscapes is a basic human right. Therefore, we believe in recycling.
ASHLEY SIMMONS PEAT
CEO & Founder, Simmons PR
It was an immense love of fashion, developing a personal style and her multifaceted communicative skill-set that were contributing factors to convince Ashley Simmons that her career would be in Fashion PR. In 2011 Ashley left her hometown in Melbourne, Australia to pursue the opportunities and experiences in the fashion industry that only one city could truly provide - New York. Ashley interned with multiple designer brands, such as Dolce & Gabbana, Steve Madden and Gucci before landing her dream job at Media and Talent Agency powerhouse, IMG. It was here that Ashley made a strong presence in the PR Fashion industry through overseeing and coordinating one of the most celebrated fashion events in the world: New York Fashion Week. Ashley would also travel south every July to undertake Miami Swim Week at the previous home to Mercedes Benz Swim at the Raleigh Hotel. Developing significant and long lasting relationships within fashion and media it became evident to Ashley that she needed to create a space for her own business dreams. In 2015 Ashley relocated to the west coast and independently launched her business Simmons PR, which focused on representing Australian brands within the U.S. During the trajectory of Ashley's business her clients have had their designs worn by an array of celebrities and featured in renowned and respected publications, which include Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire and Harper's Bazaar. As a black CEO and Founder Ashley knows the importance of representation and inclusion in every industry, in particularly her own. This year to honour her beliefs, Simmons PR will introduce a PR Scholarship Program for an African American emerging Designer. The scholarship will be awarded every 6 months for a timeframe of three months. As a female entrepreneur Ashley hopes to inspire other women to fight for their dream career and offer a platform to those that may not have the opportunity to create their own.
Cofounder & COO, FABSCRAP
Over the course of her career as an eveningwear designer in NYC, Camille Tagle often witnessed the environmentally damaging practices that result from the design process. These observations motivated her to transition from fashion design and create DESIGN UP STUDIO in 2016, a nonprofit focused on empowering the next generation of designers through mentorship, sustainable awareness, and access to reusable materials. A year later, she merged with FABSCRAP, and as their Co-Founder and COO, Camille combines her design experience with her current role at FABSCRAP in waste management to lend a clear focus of why sustainability must become a key component in the education of today’s designers, and in shaping the future of the fashion industry.
Chloe Bubert is the creator of the lifestyle blog ChloeAlysse.com,where she documents her journey with capsule wardrobes, sustainable fashion, and slow living, and grew her 50K+ Instagram following in just over a year. She also supports Tailwind members in reaching their
marketing goals on the Customer Success team. Find her on Instagram and Pinterest: @ChloeAlysse.
CHELSEY WAYTE KAFFKA
CEO & Founder, Vijon
Chelsey Wayte is the founder of Vijon, an Experiential Events Agency based in New York that specializes in producing innovative brand moments that elevate, inspire and engage. She will share her unique perspective and industry knowledge having worked with some of the world's best brands, creatives and global event platforms including New York Fashion Week and Miami Swim Week. Over the course of her career Chelsey has worked with top swimwear and resort brands including L*Space, Vitamin A, Volcom, Billabong, Acacia, Camilla, Bec & Bridge, Tigerlily and more.
Originally from Australia, Chelsey previously led Marketing and Designer Relations at IMG Fashion in Sydney - a city synonymous with beach culture and the summer lifestyle. Here Chelsey played a pivotal role in positioning Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia and Sydney as the global destination for Resort collection runway shows.
Chelsey relocated to New York in 2016 and has since forged her own path, helming the events division at Bollare (a leading PR agency in the Swimwear space), consulting for fashion brands such as Cynthia Rowley and The Blonds, and launching her own agency in 2019.
VP Sustainability, Mara Hoffman
Dana Davis is the Vice President of Sustainability, Product and Business Strategy at Mara Hoffman, and was instrumental in the brand's shift towards more responsible manufacturing and supply chain evaluation over 5 years ago. Dana also acts as an advisor for The New Fashion Initiative and is engaged with industry organizations, educators and innovators such as Fashion Positive, Textile Exchange, CFDA, and the SAC. Dana is a keen enthusiast of regenerative farming and spends her personal time gardening and landscaping with her husband George and their two children Penelope and Phoenix.
In 2015, Mara Hoffman decided to use her brand to focus on mindful consumption habits, while maintaining an ethereal, high-fashion vibe. Since then, she has begun using organic, recycled, and regenerated materials. And she's made changes to ensure her manufacturers adhere to international labor standards, looked at sustainability in fashion as an evolving issue that constantly needs to be talked about.
DE VONNA TROOPE
Independent Sales Rep., Quintessential Fashion Sales Group
De Vonna Troope is one of the most sought after sales reps in the Swim and Resort Industry. With over 10 years of industry experience managing sales for some of the hottest brands in Swimwear, De Vonna has key buyer contacts and connections and has opened doors with new and emerging brands in stores like Revolve, Diane's Beachwear, Bikini.com and Shopbop among others.
She has worked for top contemporary showrooms and lines such as Joey Showroom and House of Harlow and now owns her own sales agency, Quintessential Fashion Sales Group.
Wholesale sales representation specializing in Swimwear, Resort, & Accessories.
Representing Khongboon Swimwear, Paolita Swim & Resort Wear, Poema Swimwear, Toxic Sadie, Dbrie Swimwear.
Managing Editor at California Apparel News
Dorothy is an editor whose experience includes coverage of the apparel industry and fashion, in addition to travel, luxury lifestyle, pet goods, STEM, social issues, popular culture, and technology. Her career began 20 years ago in New York City’s garment district where she worked with an importer of Italian textiles. A major focus of Dorothy’s work across industries is the creation of sustainable products through technology and ecologically sound practices. Dorothy is a graduate of Hunter College, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She also completed Pace University's M.S., Publishing program.
The Apparel News Group, owned by TLM Publishing Inc., has been in business since 1945. The omni-channel media group covers the largest apparel center in the country and its influence worldwide. Through its print and digital presence, it covers local, national, and international apparel news, trends in fashion and accessories, new resources and what’s checking, trade shows, finance and the economy, technology, textiles and fibers, international trade and sourcing, real estate, freight and logistics, and educational institutions and associations.
ERNEST B. JAMES
Founder & CMO, Noire Management
Ernest B. James is the Founder and CEO of NOIRE MGMT. James believes that the narrative of a story is ever-evolving based on the intended audience and his approach includes traditional and non-traditional tactics that engage, inspire and motivate decisions. Prior to launching NOIRE MGMT, James was the Associate Vice President at boutique lifestyle agency, APA PR where he oversaw business development for the agency's style portfolio. During his tenure, he successfully launched Spanx's "Arm Tights" product line by Sara Blakely which included a tremendously successful media blitz across print, online, and broadcast media outlets, in addition to conceptualizing and executing the brand's first formalized digital influencer program. Additionally, James orchestrated the launch of MISSION Activewear's first-ever apparel collection in partnership with 3x NBA Champ, Dwyane Wade.
Prior to APA PR, James spent over 4 years in the Fashion division of leading NYC marketing and communications agency - LaFORCE where he developed, executed and managed tactical strategies during the rebranding of Abercrombie & Fitch, while successfully launching the Eva Longoria for The Limited capsule collection. James also orchestrated runway presentations and shows in New York, Milan and Paris in addition to managing celebrity, product placement, event curation and overall external influencer and consumer engagements for lifestyle brands including the Tribeca Film Festival, G-Star, Juicy Couture, Swarovski Elements, Calypso St. Barth and others.
Understanding that today's digital and consumer industries are diversity starved for brands, experiences and influencers who can authentically engage across multiple demographic groups - NOIRE MGMT is #changingthenarrative and providing the platform that champions that much needed diverse story-telling and brand engagement.
Flor is an Argentinean content creator living in New York City. In 2010 she created Penny Lane Blog as a personal outlet for her ideas. Since then, she's been sharing inspiring yet attainable photos and videos focused around fashion, travel & skincare/beauty. In the past couple of years, she has worked with brands such as Asos, bareMinerals, Carolina Herrera, Coach, Dr. Martens, Google, MAC Cosmetics, Macy’s, Sephora, Teen Vogue, Zappos and many more. Although time has passed and her audience has grown, she still tries to connect with her followers on an everyday basis. Last year she started a Fashion Design Program, to give people the opportunity to travel to New York City during NYFW and meet with designers and fashion experts, and just two weeks ago she launched a new consulting service for small businesses and entrepreneurs, to help them grow their online presence.
VP Digital Marketing, Launchmetrics
Gina Gulberti is the VP Digital Marketing of Launchmetrics, where she leads their digital marketing strategy dedicated to Fashion, Luxury and Cosmetic industries, present in several markets. Previously, Gina led social media and communications of Infoempleo and was also part of the marketing team at Eltenedor.es, a Tripadvisor company. In her free time, she is an active member of the education programs in prestigious business schools such as IED, ISEM Fashion Business and previously IE.
Launchmetrics is a Marketing Platform and Analytics Solution to help Fashion, Luxury and Cosmetics professionals, discover, activate and measure the voices that matter. The company works with over 1,000 brands as well as partners like IMG, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, the British Fashion Council, Pitti Immagine, Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana and Google, to accelerate their business and build lasting exposure. The company’s industry communities GPS Radar & Style Coalition bring together over 50,000 influencers, editors, buyers and more to share content, events, news, images and more.
Founder of Fashion For All Foundation
Hannah Stoudemire along with co-founder Ali Richmond, two passionate individuals who are solution oriented driven; solutions lead to impact and impact leads to change. They believe in the transformative power of education, diversity and inclusion. Education coupled with diversity and inclusion creates a world where every person from every background can confidently work in any industry and feel valued, appreciated and accepted. Society looks to the fashion industry to set the tone when it comes to the latest trends.
At Fashion For All Foundation, we believe every talented and qualified person should have access to all roles in the fashion industry no matter their background, racial makeup, size or physical ability. The Fashion Industry can take the lead and serve as stand up examples by setting the trend of diversity, representation and inclusion. It is our hope that by doing so, we the fashion community will spark a revolution and the world will follow the trend of Unity.
Hannah has professional experience in many facets of the fashion industry having worked on various levels such as retail, wholesale, corporate, fashion show production and most recently as a Stylist for the House of Lanvin. She is also the Founder/CEO of GOTI (God On The Inside) International Foundation — a nonprofit committed to transforming the lives of impoverished and underprivileged children around over the world.
JACQUELINE M. JENKINS
Executive Director of Strategic Planning and Innovation, Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT)
Jacqueline M. Jenkins is the Acting Executive Director of Strategic Planning and Innovation at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT). As a member of the President’s Cabinet, Jacqueline leads the efforts to develop and execute college-wide strategic planning while also establishing programming
and a physical location in New York, NY, to support FIT’s goal to be an innovation hub for the creative industries. Prior to joining FIT, Jacqueline was the Dean of Graduate Studies for LIM College. She oversaw and created curricula for all graduate programs. She is the founding dean for the Global Fashion Supply Chain Management degree. Jacqueline is the co-author of Fashion Supply Chain Management, a look at fashion production from concept to consumer. The book was published by Fairchild Books. She has contributed articles to industry publications such as WWD and the Fashion Manuscript. December 2019, Jacqueline was a contributor to the inaugural publication of the Coller Venture Review of the Coller School of Management Tel Aviv University on the topic of fashion innovation. Jacqueline has held the following board appointments: Pennsylvania Private Investors Group (investment fund), the Ben Franklin Technology Partners Enterprise Growth Fund (micro-loan program), and APICS NY and LI (supply chain trade association). Jacqueline was a Philadelphia Business Journal Forty Under Forty honoree. Jacqueline is also a Philadelphia Business Journal Women of Distinction honoree. The Networking Journal has also recognized Jacqueline for her accomplishments as one of the most influential African-American businesswomen. Jacqueline is the founder of www.SophisticatedCuration.com , a social community established to support the fashion interests of professional, mature women. With 10k subscribers, the community is working to create a platform for this under-serviced market of consumers. Jacqueline earned her B.A. in economics from Spelman College and her MBA in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She resides in Brooklyn, NY, where she is an aspiring fashion designer/stylist and an active member of the fashion ecosystem.
Deputy Fashion Editor, Bustle
Jessica is the Deputy Fashion Editor at Bustle. She oversees all things fashion, from red carpet roundups to trend reports.
Jessica has over 10 years of experience in the fashion industry. Previously, she was the deputy fashion director at Refinery29 and before that, the fashion features editor at Teen Vogue. Prior to joining Teen Vogue, Jessica contributed to ELLE, Vanity Fair, The New York Times, and Essence while also running her fashion and travel blog, Glamazonsblog.com. She has a BA in English from Columbia University.
When Jessica isn't interviewing designers backstage or typing away on her laptop, she enjoys traveling, taking dance classes, volunteering through her church, and spending time with her family in New Jersey.
Founder, Luxor + Finch (Fit Technology Expert)
Jessica Couch is a fit technology experts in the fashion technology space and owner of Luxor + Finch Consulting. She received her undergraduate degree from North Carolina State University's world-renowned College of textiles and her Master’s in Digital Innovation and Fit from Cornell University. Since the completion of her Master’s, she has worked with and advised numerous companies, brands, and retailers in the fit technology space as well as brands. Jessica has published over 50 articles on the matter of fit and fit tech.
Jessica’s works has been featured in The Sourcing Journal, WWD, Fashion is Your Business Podcast and many other publications.
As a consultant, Jessica works to resolve the pain points caused by fit through technology integration, best practices and innovative strategy. Through Luxor + Finch Consulting, she is able to focus on integrating technology throughout the supply chain to improve fit, educating brands on fit as a competitive advantage and to devising sustainable solutions. In 2018, she co-founded The Women of Color Fashion Tech Brunch, bringing together women of color in the fashion, tech, and finance industries . The group has evolved to include thousands of people around the world all dedicated to more diversity and inclusion in the fashion and tech world. Jessica Couch continues to innovate in fashion.
Assistant Editor, Sports Illustrated Swimsuit
Joanna is the Assistant Editor at the coveted Sports Illustrated Swimsuit publication. Joanna leads the brand on their social and digital platforms in addition to managing all styling and market work for the brand. She keeps the fashion relevant and on trend by transforming what we see on major runways into swimsuit photoshoot concepts.Throughout her years with SI Swim she has overseen photoshoot concept and styling execution for four issues.
Model / Actress / Influencer / Body Positive Advocate
After graduating in 2014 with a Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance, Jonna E. Capone found herself in New York City, to work towards her Master’s Degree at NYU. While in a production of Annie Get Your Gun, the costume designer mentioned that Jonna should look into Plus Size Modeling. Through her, Jonna found herself suddenly on set within a month for her first big commercial shoot with the company Dia & Co. She was hooked from there. Working as a fit and commercial model, influencer, and performer Jonna wanted to use her platform to help others find their voice. She noticed that there was a major need for diversity in theatre and began teaching workshops to theatre camps and students around the city. Jonna aspires to inspire others to tell their stories and be heard regardless of body type. She has worked with many young students on creating characters and strives to dismantle body image problems on the Broadway Stage. You can find Jonna’s work on her social media pages and even on tv, print ads, and more! With more than 250,000 followers, Jonna says she has been blessed to share her platform of body positive theatre as a “Curvy Creative” and IG influencer. Working with some great companies, to share the message that all bodies are beautiful and everyone has a story to tell. Follow and share your “Curvy Creative” story with Jonna @curvy_capone (IG) #curvycreative
Celebrity & Editorial Stylist
Joiee began her career at Teen People magazine where she assisted styling on photo shoots with celebrities such as Gwen Stefani, Jessica Biel, Mila Kunis, and Beyonce to name a few. She then became Accessories Editor, scouring the market for the hottest accessories in jewelry, bags, and shoes.
She was named TV Stylist at People StyleWatch and Instyle magazines in 2012, after working with these brands as a freelance stylist for nearly a year. She then added the title of Brand Ambassador at StyleWatch to her growing list of responsibilities. She has appeared on/styled fashion segments for national shows such as Good Morning America, Today Show, The View, Wendy Williams and VH1’s Morning Buzz. Joiee is the former Fashion Editor at Essence magazine where she styled Gabrielle Union, Naomie Harris, Laura Harrier, Regina Hall amongst many others, for celebrity covers and fashion stories.
She is currently a Celebrity/Editorial fashion stylist. Joiee is a proud Brooklyn native who credits her mother as a major influence on her style. Her motto: “People make clothes; clothes don’t make people.”
Co-Founder of Fashinnovation
Jordana Guimarães is a career entrepreneur and public relations expert with 17+ years of experience working with leading companies like Porsche Design, Nina Ricci and Lanvin, to name a few. In 2018, she co-founded Fashinnovation, the multimedia platform which connects entrepreneurship, innovation and technology to ignite change within the fashion industry.
Since launching with their inaugural conference at New York Fashion Week, Fashinnovation has built a community of powerhouses and brands such as Fern Mallis, Diane Von Furstenberg and Louis Vuitton, Chromat, WGSN, Wearable X, Mara Hoffman, Boxed Water, Refinery29 and Fast Company, among others.
Born and raised in Brazil, Jordana grew up exposed to economic inequality. She launched The Nylon Project in 2016, an awareness campaign that humanizes homelessness. Jordana’s philanthropic spirit then led her to publish her first book, “It Can Be You,” which taps her network of influencers and celebrities to tell the stories of homeless individuals. A preview of the book was featured at the bi-annual Fashinnovation conference; it will be on sale on Amazon and in stores by May 2020.
Jordana resides in Palm Beach, FL with her husband and business partner, Marcelo, and their two young daughters.
Executive Director of The Swimwear Association of Florida / Swim Show Organizer
In 2005, The Swimwear Association of Florida brought SwimShow to the Miami Beach Convention Center and coined the term ‘Swim Week’ to describe all of the auxiliary happenings during the event.
With more than three decades of expertise, SwimShow is recognized as the leader in swimwear exhibitions worldwide. As the industry’s most celebrated and established exhibition, SwimShow is the premier global tradeshow where the very best gather to network, exhibit and purchase next year’s trends.
Held every July, SwimShow is the largest of its kind in the world and attracts more than 7,500 buyers, manufacturers, designers, corporate personnel, press, bloggers, influencers, fashion consultants, stylists, VIP’s and other fashion industry leaders from over 60 countries across the globe to showcase brands and create business opportunities.
SwimShow offers exclusive access to the most current designs in swimwear, beachwear, resort wear, lifestyle, men’s, children’s and accessories. SwimShow caters to designer boutiques, resort shops, specialty stores, surf shops, department stores, mass merchants and more.
SwimShow is planned and executed with the utmost needs of swimwear buyers…anticipating the trends, debuting new designers each year, expanding the special events and producing an all-encompassing tradeshow that is second to none.
Attorney, Law Office of Katerina I. Duarte
Katerina I. Duarte is a transactional and litigation attorney. Her practice is focused in the areas of litigation, corporate law, business law and intellectual property. Having been raised in New York City by an artist and a designer, Katerina is passionate about supporting and counseling those in the creative industries. Prior to becoming an attorney, she gained more than 10 years experience working in the fashion and hospitality industries in New York, Miami and Greece. This practical experience has helped her in representing her clients since she understands the specific challenges that these industries face. Throughout her career, Katerina has established a solid reputation representing small businesses, start-up companies, as well as restaurants, national retailers, manufacturers, designers, photographers, galleries, artists, authors, influencers and filmmakers.
Writer for Essence and HelloBeautiful
Keyaira Boone is a writer, columnist, and arts advocate from New Jersey. She has written widely about entertainment, fashion, and beauty. Her work has been featured in ESSENCE, MadameNoire, Cassius, Bustle, Allure, and HelloBeautiful, where she writes the Model Monday column.
She is the founder of growing lifestyle destination TheCLetter.com and a supporter of Newark Arts.
Before interviewing some of the biggest names in fashion and entertainment including Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, Tracy Morgan, Tamera Mowry, Vivica A. Fox, Kelly Rowland, Naturi Naughton, Flaviana Matata, and Cheyenne Maya-Carty she began her career at LoveBrownSugar, where she contributed to the development of the BrownGirlsLove ambassador program.
She also serves as the Programs Coordinator for Liberty Hall Academic Center and Galleries, where she oversees all public facing arts and culture related matters.
She holds a B.A. in English from Kean University and a M.A. in Public and Organizational Relations from Montclair State University.
Fashion Journalist, Brand Consultant, and Creator of P.S. It's Fashion
When Liz Black began working in the fashion industry over twelve years ago, she was shocked by the obvious lack of diversity and inclusion. As a plus size woman, she stood out at every event in the thin-obsessed industry, but her love of the transformative ability of fashion and desire to enact positive change inspired her to focus on improving plus size fashion, size inclusive fashion, and inclusion overall.
Liz created her site P.S. It's Fashion to document her journey as a body-positive activist and a fat woman in working in fashion, and has added her voice to a myriad of different sites, working as a freelance writer for Glamour, Fashionista, Who What Wear, Refinery29, Bustle, Huffington Post, The Curvy Fashionista, City Magazine, and many more.
In 2016 her editorial fashion shoot entitled "Sample Size" went viral internationally, spurring a conversation within the industry on the limitations of extreme sample sizes and the impact of homogenous runways.
Liz currently contributes to a variety of websites, including her own, as well as providing content and copy for several different fashion brands. She has previously worked as a brand consultant for companies hoping to expand into the plus size sphere and is available to provide consultation for any brand that desires to be more inclusive.
Owner, The Riviere Agency (PR/Marketing/Production)
Lori Riviere has been a top PR and marketing expert in the fashion, beauty, and lifestyle space for over ten years, with a specialty in swim and resortwear. She has produced shows and done PR for major platforms and swimwear brands including Frankie's Bikinis, Hot-As-Hell, Monday Swimwear, Mikoh, San Lorenzo Bikinis and SWIMMIAMI. She earned her Bachelor's degree in Advertising from University of Florida and a law degree from the University of Miami School of Law. Together with Nicole Doswell, she has built one of the top minority-owned and operated agencies managing shows for New York Fashion Week, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, and Miami Swim Week. She is a go-to source for brands looking to build trendsetting events, get press, and work with influencers globally. She has built a reputation for merging impeccable event production and experiences with getting the right people and the right buzz for brands through strategic press placement. When she is not mapping out amazing plans for brands to grow market share, she is sharing recipes, outtakes from her life in NYC, and #momfails with her toddler and baby on Instagram @loririviere.
Senior Director, Business Development + Strategic Partnerships, CLD PR
Melanie Hunter is a Southern California native, publicist and beauty enthusiast. Her publicity career started in 2010 working in talent and entertainment public relations. While doing entertainment publicity, she also worked production on televised award shows such as the GRAMMY Awards, VMAs, BET awards and a myriad of others. A search for another genre of publicity, Hunter stumbled into the world of fashion. Her fashion career started in 2012 at CLD PR through 2017. While at CLD PR, she cultivated successful PR strategies and campaigns for brands - mostly swimwear. While at CLD PR, she also produced and promoted a bevy of runway shows for Miami Swim Week each season. After leaving CLD PR, she freelanced and worked at a few other prominent LA based fashion PR agencies, ultimately returning to CLD PR in 2020 as the Senior Director of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships. In her new role, she is dedicated to expanding CLD PR's presence in the fashion industry and providing up and coming brands with the dynamic publicity services for which CLD PR is known.
Founder and CEO, Andie Swim
Melanie Travis is the founder and CEO of Andie, a global e-commerce brand upending the women's swimwear market. Melanie established her career at some of New York City's most successful consumer technology companies: Foursquare, Kickstarter and most recently Bark & Co. Andie, founded by Travis in 2017, presents swimwear in a way that makes sense to the modern consumer. Debunking the myth that swim is a seasonal category, Andie has created a brand that consumers turn to time and time again for their year-round vacation and travel needs. By launching with a DTC model - Andie has shattered the stigma surrounding swim’s seasonality, creating an engaging online platform that allows them to connect with their consumers on a consistent basis. To date, Andie has raised $10M with investments from Sonostar Ventures, Social Starts and Trail Mix Ventures - further establishing the growth and credibility of the DTC swimwear space.
Community Manager, Tailwind
Melissa Megginson is Community Manager and resident Cat Lady at Tailwind, the leading visual marketing tool for brands. As Community Manager at Tailwind, it is her job to make Tailwind's members look GOOD and find success in their marketing efforts. In her 8 years at Tailwind, Melissa has won an ADDY award worked with major brands like Adobe and JCPenney, and recently graduated with an MBA from the University of Oklahoma. Find her on Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram at @MelMegg
Founder and CEO, DC Swim Week
Moh Ducis, former designer and now CEO of DC Swim Week- An omnichannel platform for Independent fashion designers working at the intersection of tech and fashion,. Moh received an MBA from Geroge Washington University and a graduate degree from Parsons NYC on Fashion Management (MPS). Prior to founding DC Swim Week (DCSW), he spent over 10 years as a subject matter expert/consultant in the fashion technology space working closely with Farfetch, Steven Madden & Revolve on product technologies and show production logistics.
The vision for DCSW came into focus after its simple-yet-transformative concept through fashion show productions and a growth platform for independent designers. 6 years after its inception in Washington DC, NYC and Miami, DCSW is incorporating software development and data science in mobile commerce and retail technology through its DCSW NOW digital platform. Moh's vision is to understand what designers are looking for and the trends in the marketplace through smart data solutions so brands can make more informed and educated business choices.
NATALIJA DEDIC STOJANOVIC
Paraiso Miami Beach Co-Founder
Prior to co-founding Paraiso Miami Beach, Natalija spent 10 years at Funkshion Productions as Chief Creative Officer. Under her creative leadership Funkshion grew and rebranded its fashion week platform to a new breed of experiential fashion festival presenting over 40 events each season and consistently producing brand content that had a dramatic impact on social and traditional media.
Natalija was instrumental in helping Funkshion position Paraiso Miami Beach as one of the fastest growing national fashion platforms, and the leader in the swimwear and beach wear industry. The event invites brands into the conversation, providing invaluable insights into consumer preferences, limitless opportunities for authentic content creation, and unforgettable experiences that generate both excitement and loyalty.
Prior to joining Funkshion, Natalija was a journalist and TV host at Serbian National Television, with her work mostly focused on the fashion industry. She is passionate about wellness and sustainability, and regularly speaks and writes about both topics.
Founder, Custom Collaborative
Ngozi Okaro advocates for a fashion industry that honors planet and people. Ngozi founded Custom Collaborative, to support immigrant & low-income women launching sustainable fashion careers. Custom Collaborative serves US designers who want to design and produce locally, fashion-industry workers, and consumers who want ethical fashion. Among other distinctions, Ngozi is a 2020 “World-Changing Women in Conscious Business” winner, from Conscious Company Media and Kate Spade, 2019 NYC Fair Trade Coalition "Changemaker of the Year", and 2019 New York Women's Foundation "Spirit of Entrepreneurship” awardee. She is certified by New York University’s Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising, was a 2014 Environmental Leadership Program Fellow, and is a graduate of the Coro Leadership New York program. Ngozi is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center and Morgan State University. She is licensed to practice law in Louisiana and New York.
Founder, Models Of Color Matter
Nicole Doswell, a Clark Atlanta University graduate, got her start in fashion at one of the top modeling agencies in the world and has since worked both producing and publicizing fashion shows and brands leveraging her strong influencer contacts at The Riviere Agency in New York. Models of Color Matter is an initiative spearheaded by Nicole Doswell to increase diversity and representation in fashion, entertainment and media. Nicole has been featured on Glossy and Fashion Week Online for her advocacy and diversity work during New Fashion Weeks. Currently Nicole Doswell has been using her platform to uplift Black Model voices and help spread awareness of the mistreatment of black models behind the scene of the fashion industry.
Other Initiatives / Actions Items Include: Content creation utilizing models and creatives of color, Diversity Casting, Modeling Agency placement, Diversity Counseling for brands, Research to build the narrative and uplift the voices of models of color, and the promotion of Black History studies.
Disability Advocate & Model
Rajee Aerie was born in India and contracted polio at a young age. Fortunately, she was adopted by a loving American family. Growing up she never let anything get in her way and this can do attitude has stuck with her. As a teen she noticed there was no one who looked like her in TV shows, movies or in magazines. The lack of South Asians and disability representation in the media frustrated her, so she decided she would work hard to create change so that all people would feel included and seen. Rajee received her degree in broadcast journalism in hopes of being part of the change to include South Asians and people with disabilities in the media. After she graduated from college, she was faced with countless rejections but she never gave up. Rajee is agency represented and has appeared in TV and print work as well as speaking engagements and interviews over the past several years. Her most noted work has been a national campaign for American Eagle’s sister brand Aerie in which she was featured on a billboard in Times Square 2x in 2018. Aerie is a brand she has always wanted to be a model for and coincidentally is her last name. Rajee wrote an op-ed in Teen Vogue, as well as USA Today and she was interviewed for CBS national news on being the new face of modeling.
ROCCO LEO GAGLIOTI
Founder / CEO, Fashion News Lifestyle Network
Rocco Leo Gaglioti is the founder and CEO of FNL Network. He has devoted over 25 years to the industry as a multi award-winning producer, director and creator. His network streams all over the world on Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Android devices and iOS devices, while successfully reaching a diverse audience of consumers. Rocco and his international team provide a steady stream of lifestyle entertainment content for millions of viewers across the globe.
Rocco entered into the entertainment industry in 1992, and in 2000, he began his own production company called, RLG Productions. Since then, his productions have been nominated and won several awards across the globe. This year, Rocco has developed a groundbreaking platform called International Digital Fashion Week which will allow designers from all around the world to showcase their new collections to a bigger audience than ever before on the FNL Network platforms. Over the years, Rocco has developed tight knit relationships with acclaimed fashion designers, top models, esteemed producers and so many more prominent creators within the industry. As an international businessman, he’s traveled the world to experience other cultures that helped him shape the diverse and inclusive series within his network.
Founder, Sandy Krupkin Consulting
Sandy Krupkin is the founder and CEO of Sandy Krupkin Consulting based in New York. Sandy works with women’s emerging fashion designers, launching new brands to enter the retail market. She oversees all facets relating to sales, pricing, merchandising, and brand strategy. She is also the curator of pop up shops in Westchester NY, providing a retail platform for well known brands along with emerging designers to be introduced to the end consumer.
Sandy graduated with a BA in Fashion Merchandising with a minor in Marketing from Bradley University. She started in retail management, working with Bloomingdales, Gucci, Elie Tahari and for the majority of her career at Nicole Miller in corporate wholesale sales where she oversaw the company’s sales force, launching the brand internationally to great success. She was also instrumental in pioneering the launch of contemporary ready to wear and resort labels. Sandy brought her knowledge and expertise to the annual Miami Swim Week at Hammock, where she worked as a brand ambassador and headed up VIP relations for retailers.
Sandy has combined her 20+ years of fashion experience with her passion for social media to create new and exciting ways to introduce and promote her emerging brands and events.
Head of Content, Influencer Intelligence and Fashion/Beauty Monitor
As Head of Content, Sarah creates and manages the content strategy across product content, research and content marketing for Fashion & Beauty Monitor and Influencer Intelligence - the leading platform for talent and influencer marketing partnerships.
Influencer Intelligence is a full-service talent marketing solution. Combining a data-driven influencer marketing platform with a dedicated in-house analyst team, we help businesses identify and evaluate the right talent for their campaigns and plan their communications effectively.
Fashion & Beauty Monitor is the go-to digital resource for the fashion, beauty and lifestyle industries, helping brands drive outreach, build relationships and engage with their audience in a constantly evolving communications market. With over 60,000 industry contacts, an extensive event calendar and constantly updated industry news, our leading PR solution ensures businesses can effectively plan content coverage and build relationships that really matter.
At Influencer Intelligence and Fashion & Beauty Monitor, we pride ourselves on thought leadership and meaningful insights. We regularly publish research reports exploring key issues impacting influencer marketing and run events discussing hot topics and trends to help businesses make informed decisions on their communications and marketing strategies. In the report 7 Influencer Marketing Trends for 2020, we predict the hot topics for this year that brand marketers need to be aware of, from the rise in popularity of purpose-led influencer marketing, to the creation of the ‘virtual influencer’.
Co-Founder, The Lingerie Collective
Tiffany Cole-Allen, Founder of The Lingerie Collective, a professional organization that provides a networking community and business resources for individuals and entrepreneurs within the intimate apparel, swim, and active wear industries. Prior to starting The LC, Tiffany was a technical designer specializing in the fit of intimate apparel and swim for well over a decade, working on product for retailers such as Victoria’s Secret, Betsey Johnson, Aerie, and Walmart. A graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, she has trained and worked in many other facets of the industry including merchandising, production, modeling, and marketing. She uses her platform as a model and industry professional to advocate for inclusiveness in the intimates and swim world.
Founder, Nessy Swimwear
Nessy Swimwear is a range of fashion forward swimsuits loved by countless girls around the world. Made with a double-lined seamless design, Nessy Swimwear’s luxe bikinis are created to compliment the body with a universally curve hugging fit. From on-trend bikinis to staple styles, the brand has something for every taste, perfectly worn both on and off the beach.
Founded by LA-native Vanessa Sanchez, Nessy came to life when - at the young age of 15 - Vanessa noticed a gap in the swimwear market. In searching for suits to fit and flatter her own curves, Vanessa started designing and sewing bikinis for herself. What initially began as a personal passion project, quickly turned into a business as friends and classmates began requesting bikinis, with social media serving to swiftly propel Nessy Swimwear to popularity among her peers.
As Nessy Swimwear’s foundation was solidified and brand awareness grew, Vanessa learned to balance the demanding responsibilities of simultaneously attending high school and building a business. From sketching designs in between classes, to finishing orders on a Friday night, the budding entrepreneur used her self-taught skills to create the sought-after swimwear line that Nessy is today.
With one goal in mind, bringing confidence to the masses, Vanessa (now 18 yrs old) prides herself on being involved in every step of the process -- all designing, manufacturing, and marketing is done soley by Vanessa. Through even the smallest tweaks, each suit is handmade by Vanessa to fit you like a glove.
Today Nessy Swimwear can be seen on some of your fave influencers like Chantal Jeffries and Celebs like Kim Kardashian, Ming Lee Simmons, and Naya Riviera.
Digital Director, Bollare
Born and raised in Venice, CA, Zack Tanck obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Upon graduation, he relocated back to Los Angeles to pursue a career in public relations. Now having worked in the PR industry for over thirteen years, Zack is currently a Digital Director at communications firm Bollare. With a keen eye for detail and passion for creative thinking, Zack specializes in the swim, resort, and contemporary markets, having worked with swimwear brands including ACACIA, Beach Bunny, FAE, GIGI C Bikinis, Gooseberry Seaside, L*SPACE, Luli Fama Swimwear, MIKOH, O'Neill, She Made Me, Tori Praver Swimwear, and Vitamin A, among others. On a daily basis, Zack works closely with his widespread network of digital influencers for brand partnerships, earned placements, content creation, social procurement, and activations.
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