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All Hail Fern Mallis, the Godmother of Fashion!

Style dynamo Fern Mallis, a speaker at our NYC Out Loud event, is receiving another honor—and sharing the spotlight with some incredible peers.

Fern Mallis was one of the stars of NextTribe’s recent Out Loud event in NYC, wowing the crowd with her candor and creativity. (That’s her in the photo above flanked by Kimberly Cihlar, NextTribe’s fashion editor, and another fashionista Catherine Fisher.)

Mallis, 71, has had a storied career in fashion: She served as executive director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America from 1991–2001, where she created 7th on Sixth productions—or New York Fashion Week as it is known today. This is the now-legendary style summit, where passers-by gather on NYC street corners to gawk at designers, models, and journalists sweeping into runway shows. Mallis was also senior vice president of IMG Fashion from 2001 to 2010 and is a notable philanthropist, having led campaigns that have raised millions of dollars to fight AIDS and breast cancer.

In recognition of her work, which has earned her the moniker “The Godmother of Fashion,”  Mallis is being honored with the inaugural Silver Star Award by the Carter Burden Network, a renowned agency that provides aging services. On November 4th, not only will her work be acknowledged, but also that of a few key influencers on aging who were selected by Mallis herself.

Read More: How I Conquered My Midlife Fashion Crisis

In Good Company

Among them are Iris Apfel, the 98-year-old style icon who is so well-known for her Aging Boldly fashion sense that she even styled a version of Barbie. Her global style has been featured in museum exhibitions, in books, and on film—and she even signed with a modeling agency at age 97!

Also being honored is Joan Kron, who is in her 90s and who’s been an author and journalist, including for the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Allure magazine. Kron has focused on the topic of plastic surgery in recent years, dealing with it in a frank and taboo-busting way. She also made her debut as a film producer/director a couple of years ago with the feature, Take My Nose…Please!

Fran Weissler, 91, is also being saluted for her work as a Tony Award-winning theatrical producer in partnership with her husband Barry. After years of touring Shakespearean companies, they moved up to Broadway with Othello and Medea in the early ‘80s. The duo has earned seven Tony Awards and four Drama Desk Awards, among other honors.  

Congrats to all of these amazing women!

Read More: Women Over 50 Shine at This Year’s CFDA Awards

By Janet Siroto


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