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The Couture Council

The Couture Council of The Museum at FIT will honor iconic footwear designer Christian Louboutin with its 2019 Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion on Wednesday, September 4, 2019, at a luncheon at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City. The luncheon benefits The Museum at FIT (MFIT), New York’s only museum dedicated exclusively to the art of fashion. As has become tradition, the award ceremony and luncheon herald the arrival of fall New York Fashion Week. Read more about the prestigious award and event.

Follow the conversation on Twitter and Instagram using #COUTURECOUNCIL


The Couture Council is an elite membership group that supports The Museum at FIT. The Couture Council helps make it possible for the museum to mount world-class exhibitions that educate and inspire, to build and conserve its extraordinary permanent collection, and to organize free public programs that serve FIT’s 10,000 students as well as the general public. 

The Couture Council, working in conjunction with the museum, organizes activities and events to raise the institution’s profile and provide financial support for the museum’s initiatives. The most important of these events is the Couture Council’s award ceremony and benefit luncheon. Designers who have received the Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion include Karl Lagerfeld, Valentino, and the late Oscar de la Renta.
Illustration of open-toed shoe with big bow by Christian Louboutin
Illustration by Christian Louboutin
See photos of Couture Council events on Flickr.

Join the Couture Council:

Members of the Couture Council are invited to all of the museum’s opening receptions and other special member-only fashion events. 

The Couture Council is pleased to offer the following new membership levels:

  • Couture Membership - $1000
  • Fashion Icon Membership - $2500
  • Fashionista Membership - $350
  • Fashion Professional Membership - $350
Learn about the Couture Council's membership levels and benefits. 
Join or renew online via our secure website using your credit card.

Board of Directors

Kamie Lightburn
Julie Macklowe
Carole Divet Harting
Jeffery Fowler

Past Chairmen

 Yaz Hernández
  Liz Peek

Board Members

 Jane E. DeFlorio
 Angela Dotson 

 Joele Frank
 Violet Gross
 Audrey Gruss
 Marjorie  R. Harris 
 Sharon Jacob
 Eleanora Kennedy  
Lisa Klein
Michèle Gerber Klein
Stephanie Loeffler
Julie Macklowe
Lara Meiland-Shaw
Melissa Mafrige Mithoff
Laura Nicklas
Amelia Ogunlesi
Karen Phillips
Kathy Prounis
Kathy Reilly
Darcy Rigas
Lois Robbins
Kara Ross
Emilie Rubinfeld
Peter G. Scotese
Jean Shafiroff
Nicole Weiss


Valerie Steele, Director MFIT


Advisory Board Members

Ken Downing
Linda Fargo
 Hal Rubenstein


Couture Council Members JULY 2019

Mona Aboelnaga
Tom Ajamie
Loreen Arbus
April Armstrong
Julieta Arrieta
Virginia N. Barbato
Jessica Barber
Kathryn Berry
Ruby Bola
Paige Boller

Jane L. Bradbury
Amelia Brown
Anna Brusco

Noreen Buckfire
Janna Bullock
Robin Burns-McNeill
Alyson Cafiero
Lindsay Caprioni
Christina Castle
Suzanne Chute
Angela Clofine

Christina R. Davis
Kate Davis
Mary E. Davis 
Marisol Deluna
Beth Dincuff
Karen Eckhoff
Pamela Egan
Martha Kramer Fox
Ann Gallo
Barbara Georgescu

Melissa Gottesman

Annette Green
Manuela Zissler Grenert
Victoria Guranowski
Susan Gutfreund
Jody Harrison Grass
Terri Havens
Celia Hegyi
Kate V. Hemphill
Tania Higgins
Evelyn Blose Holman
Heidi Holterbosch
Joan Hornig
Meghan Horstman 
Leslie B. Hull

Sharon Coplan Hurowitz
Ami Javeri
Robyn Joseph
Elizabeth Kahane
Erica Kasel
Rod Keenan
Gordon Kendall
Adnan Ege Kutay
Laura Layfer
Brenda Levin 
Lauren Levison
Yvonne Lynam

Carolyn Mackenzie
Hilary Macklowe

Shirley Madhere-Weil

Ann Mailly-Long
Lisa Malitz
Hannah Mannion

Meredith Marks
Jacqueline Martin
Avery McCann

Asante Mills

Danielle Morrin
Natalie Mouilso
Momsen Noel
Barbara J. Parsky
Cristiane Peixoto
Sarah Sulzberger Perpich
Elizabeth Petersen
Katherine Phelps
Donna Poyiadjis
Leticia Presutti

Barbara Putnam
Kerri Quigley
Lauren Rantz
Hannah Rokes 
Harling Ross
Sydney Sadick

Nicole Salmasi

Colleen Salonga
Pam B. Schafler

Patricia Schatz 
Barbara Cirkva Schumacher

Sara Schwarz

Patricia Selden

Katherine Simon

Christine Smith
Cally Stavropoulos
Randall Ian Stempler
Sheila Stephenson
Debbie Stevenson
Alisa Swidler
Allyson Tang
Emiko Terasaki

Nora Tezanos
Margaret Thorne
Rebecca Vanyo
Lauren S. Veronis
Olga Votis
Patti Wagner
Kelsey Weber

Ashley Wein
Graham Wetzbanger
Nina Whitman
Lauren Wilson

Sarah Wolfe
Lynn Wright
Yliana Yepez
Frank Zambrelli
Highlights from Previous Special Events
  • Invitation to the annual Couture Council Artistry of Fashion benefit luncheon. Past awardees: Ralph Rucci (2006), Alber Elbaz of Lanvin (2007), Isabel Toledo (2008), Dries Van Noten (2009), Karl Lagerfeld (2010), Valentino (2011), Oscar de la Renta (2012), Michael Kors (2013), Carolina Herrera (2014), Manolo Blahnik (2015),  Albert Kriemler (2016), Thom Browne (2017), and Narciso Rodriguez (2018).
  • Private tours of exhibitions at The Museum at FIT.
  • Private visits to the ateliers of fashion designers such as Isabel Toledo and her husband, fashion illustrator Ruben Toledo, Ralph Rucci, Zac Posen, Angel Sanchez, Chadwick Bell, Prabal Gurung, J. Mendel, Francisco Costa of Calvin Klein, Reem Acra, Bibhu Mohapatra, Lafayette 148 and NYC Ballet Costume Shop.
  • Store events with Calvin Klein, Verdura, Tiffany, Reed Krakoff, the FD Gallery, and Mish New York.
  • Lectures with Michael Kors, Zac Posen and Ruben and Isabel Toledo at the Doubles Club.
  • Cocktails and Conversation with Peter Copping of Oscar de la Renta at the Core Club.
  • Cocktails and Conversation with designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler and Dr. Valerie Steele, Director, The Museum at FIT at the Proenza Schouler Boutique.
  • Tea and Conversation with renowned hat designer Patricia Underwood.
  • NYC Ballet Costume Shop Tour.
  • Cocktails and Couture with Bibhu Mohapatra at the Core Club.
  • Cartier Mansion Tour.
  • Cocktails and Conversation with Jason Wu.
  • Great Designers event featuring fashions by Lee Alexander McQueen.
  • Introduction to Fashion History featuring The Little Black Dress.
  • 2019 Couture Council Winter Luncheon with Roopal Patel, SVP Fashion Director, Saks Fifth Avenue.
  • Great Designers event featuring fashions by Azzedine Alaïa with supermodel Veronica Webb.
Proenza Schouler with Valerie Steele
Photo by Brian Ach/Getty Images for The Museum at FIT